Bitten at Daycare!!

Updated on May 24, 2010
M.C. asks from Windsor Locks, CT
34 answers

Let me first start out by saying I love my son's daycare. We searched for a long time to find the right place for him and pay a significat amount of money ($1250 / month) for him to be in a place that we feel comfortable with. That being said, every daycare has its flaws...

My son is 16 months old and is in a room with other children that are 12 to 18 months old. I completely understand that this is the age that children bite and there's not a lot that can be done about it. My son does not bite, but in the past week he has been bitten TWICE at daycare. I also understand that things happen so fast at this age, there's not much that the caregivers can do to interceed before another child bites.

This REALLY bothers me, but I don't know what to do about it or what to say to the daycare provider. Do I have a right to be angry, or is it just a consequence of the age group? What should I do / say to the director of the daycare?

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So What Happened?

Wow, thanks for all of the responses. It's reassuring to know that many other parents have dealt with the same thing, on both sides of the biting issue. I guess each child has their own phase that they go through. I found out on Friday when I picked my son up from daycare that even though he's not a biter, he tackles other babies and tries to sit on them (!!!). I spoke with the director on Friday to learn their procedures for biting accidents and feel much better. They handle things the best they can and do everything possible to prevent incidences. Thanks again!

Featured Answers



answers from Dallas on

I am responding from the angle of the parent of the child who bites. While none of my children were biters, I worked for a woman whose son was a biter at that age, and she was devastated by the hostile reaction. He was a wonderful little boy, so please don't leap to the conclusion that a child who bites is bad or aggressive or needs discipline. In most instances, it is because it is the only way the child can "communicate" because they just don't have the verbal skills yet. I'm not saying it's right, nor am I saying it should just be ignored. It's not so much about "disclipline" as it is about redirecting. Instead of asking the daycare what type of "discipline" they apply or how soon they are going to kick this kid out of daycare, ask instead if they plan to offer any type of educational seminar to the parents (both of the biter and the bitee). There is a lot to be learned on both sides about this behavior. In the case of the woman I mentioned, once her son's language skills kicked in, the biting stopped because he was better able to express himself. And while it was a stressful time for her, she was very thankful of the educational seminar the daycare provided.

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answers from New York on

I agree with Karen,

my son too went through a biting phase. There were triggers that I could control but sometimes he would just do it for no reason. I also talked to my DR and she said at that age it is typical behavior (although not all may go through it) and that there really isnt treatment for it until the child is older around 3 when there could be a issue on why the child does not understand why this is not acceptable behavior.

I would absolutely talk to the center and see if it is the same child (if they will even tell you that) and when it happened. That way you can understand the circumstances better

NOBODY wants there child to be bitten, but when my child would bite others it would bring me to tears. It made me feel like I was doing something wrong. I stayed away from group classes for a while and did everything I could to stop the behavior from escalating. He grew out of it, but it took a toll on me.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Dallas on

The same thing happened to my daughter at 17 months. Honestly, I was upset that she had been bitten but I know that I would have been mortified had it been my daughter who did the biting. Just imagine how embarrassed and upset the biter's parents probably are.

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answers from Austin on

It is part of the age group. The kids cannot verbalize their feelings so they bite. It is a great way to get another child to drop a toy!

Even in families with a young child, the young child can bite a sibling, parent, pet.. .. It is just one of those things.. .Wait till sometime your child hits, pushes, curses.. whatever another child. All of a sudden you will be on the other side and know it is not a mean thing, it is a reaction..

Have you ever seen this video? It is called Charlie bit me.

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answers from Chicago on

I have actually discussed the biting issue with health care and behavioral therapists in the past. So I understand, loud and clear, every Mom who is saying "it's part of the age...don't sweat it." This is definitely the "acceptable social approach" to biting in this day and age. But I still don't understand it. Am I really the only one who believes a Mom can control this type of behavior in our children?

My son bit his older brother once. The consequences for his biting was quite severe at my house (Pediatrician approved, of course.) And it has never happened again. And, gracious, he has never, ever bit or hit someone in public. Again, these are part of my home's No Tolerance policy -- even at 12-18 months of age.

I don't believe that any Mom on this board waits until the age of 3 to teach her child not to run in the street or touch the hot oven! And this is not a matter of teaching the child why it's bad to bite. The child does not need to understand -- but he should learn that it is not an option and it will not be tolerated. Period. To allow social acceptance of biting ("it's just the age") seems lazy to me. If I can control this with my special needs seems like anyone with a typical child should have no problem. I'm really surprised I'm in the minority. I'm not trying to be controversial. But Moms like me do exist.

EDIT: Yes, of course you have a right to be angry. I would ask the Director to explain the exact measures taken when a child has been bit -- how do they clean the skin, etc. I would also ask what their plan is to ensure it does not happen again. What is their policy about children who frequently bite others...when are they asked to leave, etc. I'm sorry this happened to you.

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answers from San Francisco on

"I completely understand that this is the age that children bite and there's not a lot that can be done about it." - your quote

Yes, it is just a consequence of the age group. Don't be angry, the biters are 1 and 2 years old. Your child is already over it, you are the only one that is still upset. Biting happens.

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answers from Joplin on

I worked for La Petite Academy in the Toddler ( age one) room and I have to tell you as upset as you are, I can assure you that the teacher is upset and aware of the situation and is doing her best to try and avoid any of her little charges getting bit or biting others. It looks bad for the teacher, it may seem as if she is not paying attention, but its a tough job, and not one that someone takes on if they don't absolutely adore children. I am not sure what the ratio is teacher to child, but the ratio when I was a lead teacher was I could have 6 one year olds at one time, and 12 if I had another reacher with me. That is a lot of little ones. Biting, sadly is age appropriate, it is a means to communicate when language skills are not there yet. If it happens a lot more I would be upset, but still there is not a lot that can be done. You should get an incident report each time. If you have any other concerns that may be a red flag and then you may want to bring it up to the director. Lots of luck!

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answers from Las Vegas on

Of course you have the right to be angry, this is your baby. But, his surroundings are a room of probably 11 other little guys his same age, same mentality and with teeth. They are still trying this concept out, unfortunately it was on your son.

I am assuming this is your only child, as children are full of all sorts of surprises and you learn that they all do these things. If it is not biting, then one day you will have slipped and not cut his fingernails and you will receive a note that he scratched someone. I think at this age, they don't do this stuff intentionally, the intentional stuff comes later.

I am told by the school my 4YO daughter is quiet and shy and is never a trouble maker. Well, I walked in the school the other day and my daughter was in a mixed age room while waiting to be picked up. I saw her laying on the bottom shelf of a book shelf with a little boy who is probably two. She had her foot with a shoe on on his head. I didn't raise her this way, but they do it and who knows why...because they can? Too lazy to move? Older and what's he going to do? He hit her before and it's payback time? I don't know, but they do these things.

So, while you are understandably upset over this, let it go. I am sure your son has and he is the one who was bitten.

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answers from Madison on

This has been a problem at my son's daycare as well. When they were around that age (18 months) it is very common. My son got bitten twice in a week too and there has been a few weeks when everyone started biting everyone. Even my son bit a few times. It was crazy!

What the daycare teachers did was to say "no biting" to the biter, and give attention and TLC to the one bitten. They also shadowed the "big" biters to intervene before they bite. It seemed to slow down quite a bit as they did these, and as the kids grew up and became more verbal, so they can use their words instead of biting.

Well, unfortunately, looks like it started to happen again recently (they are around 2 now). My son (luckily) is good at saying "No!" and "Stop it!" when another child bothers him, which helps. Here is what the daycare providers are doing in addition: The teachers noticed that the bites usually happen in the morning, between snack and lunch time. So they started to separate children into two groups of four and take one group outside during that time to give them more space. They also called in a professional childhood development person specializing in problem behavior, to observe and give the teachers advice. I thought it was a very good thing for the daycare to seek such professional help. We do not know yet if these will help stop the biting but it is good to know that the daycare is doing something!

You could also ask the daycare provider what they are doing in case of a bite, what is their policy regarding biters (do they get expelled etc), what their plan is to stop the bites, etc... Are the parents of the biters cooperating? Can they bring in an assistant to shadow the biters? Can they separate the children into groups? Can they seek professional help?

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answers from Austin on

I'm sorry that you're child was bitten. Really I am... because when my daughter was 16-19 months, she went through a bad biting phase. I was even warned that she might be asked to leave the school. I'm a FT working mom--I can't lose my daycare!! So I checked into child psychologists, to see if they could help me stop the behavior... They don't even offer assistance unless the child is at least age 3. We read books about not biting; I sent her to daycare with teethers and gum numbing gel (in case it was brought on by teething irritation); I asked that she not sit next to any children that she tended to bite more often; I gave them a chart to fill out so I could see if the biting was more prone at certain times or situations. The facility told the teachers to shadow her as much as possible... If that didn't work, I was going to have to find a nanny... And then, she out-grew it. And some other child was pulling her hair or biting her.

I truly tried to break the behavior as much as possible. I'm sure if there is a biter in your son's class, the parents feel just as upset by it. I don't want to make excuses, but biting is possible behavior for the age group. You can ask the director if one child is biting in particular, and if so, can your child can be sat next to different children at circle time, lunch, art, etc.

A lot of previous posters are mentioning discipline... Ok... Well, between 12-20 months, children really don't grasp 'cause & effect' discipline. That requires a developmental milestone that occurs a little later. They can be separated and have quiet time, but true discipline isn't effective.

Hope it gets better!

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answers from Columbus on

You are experiencing one of the hardest parts of motherhood! Your head and your heart are reading two different books.

In one book, your head knows all the reasons why this issue is not anyone's fault and you know that your child is in a safe and nurturing enviornment. In the other book, your heart is angry that your child is the one who got bitten and you want the little buggers who did it to pay...(tounge in cheek here) every Mama has been angry when someone hurt their kid, even when it is a little one.

I think you should keep an eye out for it being a pattern for one child to bite your son, but if it was just one of those things, then you should try to let it go. Hard, for sure. You may not ever get any better at this when he is 5, or 10, or 13 or even 18 or more, but you will get more wise as you age and learn when it is just better to keep your mouth shut in public, rant to your husband, and kiss the baby a few extra times...


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answers from Dayton on

I think this is a part of the age group. My daughter got bitten couple of times too when she was about 16 months and then she bit someone when she was around 18 months. I did a lot of research and it mostly pointed to that she was trying to emulate the behavior she was seeing in her case.
Just because a kid bites does not make them a bad kid. There can be various reasons for it - teething, experimenting, expression due to lack of vacabulary, etc. What if your kid bites someone tomorrow? Would you still be angry? There is not much you can do to control it with that age group.

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answers from Nashville on

Of course you have a right to be angry. It's very frustrating as a parent when you baby gets bitten. I'm the mother of two. My youngest is about to turn 4 and my oldest is 6. Both of them have been in daycare for years. Yes, it is most definitely a consequence of that age group. BUT, that still doesn't mean a biting child can just have a field day and bite away until they "out grow" it. Our daycare has a biting policy. It's a kind of three strikes and you're out kind of thing. The first time a child bites, the parents have to sign the accident report and the teacher will discuss the concern and ask for their help in their home to address the behavior with thier child. The second time the child bites, the parents are called immediately and must come pick their child up. The third time the child bites, the parents are called to come pick up their child and the child cannot return until the parents have corrected the biting behavior. After that, if the child bites again, the parents are called to pick up their child and they are expelled from the daycare. This is all written in the contract you sign. So, I would approach your daycare director and ask them what their policy is on biting. Then, you will know what to expect. Granted, the teacher cannot tell you which child bit your son, but if/when it happens again, then you have every right to ask if it was the same child. If it was.......then I would start really asking the teacher/director what they are doing about it.
I know it's tough. But, it really is just a phase and it will get better as your son gets older. Neither of my kids ever bit anyone, but they were bitten many times. I know how awful it makes you feel.

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answers from Dallas on

This is very, very common. It happened to my son as well - he was bitten twice in the SAME day. I was livid.

Talk to the director/owner. Find out what kind of discipline action they take, and at what point they ask a child not to return. At my previous daycare they made the parents sign an acknowledgement that their child bit someone (or hit/pushed/harmed - whatever happened) If a child had the same issue a certain amount of times it was in their contract that the daycare could and did ask the families not to return. Make sure your daycare has this in place.

You can also raise concerns about attentiveness but -- as a Mom of three kids with number four on the way.. I know how easy it is for something to happen while you're just changing a diaper. We all do. So, keep in mind what the teacher to student ratio is and that diaper changes, putting snacks together, etc take attention.

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answers from Indianapolis on

Our daughter is in a toddler room, too. She's 2 and has been with many of these kids since they started at a few weeks old. She's been bitten 4 times in the past month.

The teachers are really good about letting us know. We've worked really hard on developing good relationships with them so we can have open dialog. They've reassured us that none of the situations have been provoked by our daughter doing something.

3/4 were by one girl who is our daughter's BFF. This other girl isn't developing verbally as quickly as other kids, so she's taking her frustration out by biting.

We have gotten to know her parents well and have a hard time believing they're the kind who wouldn't address it at home. After the 3rd event, my husband went to the director. They set-up a meeting between the parents, the owner, the director and the teacher to talk about the situation and come-up with a resolution.

No more problems until last week when another child bit her as they were both trying to play with the same toy.

I'd talk frankly with the teachers to make sure you're aware of the situation should it arise again and come-up with a game plan if you have a chronic biter in the class.

Just as important, at home, make sure to discuss with your child that it's not acceptable. At 2, we ask her, "Do we bite our friends?" No. "Do we hit our friends?" No. "Can we give our friends hugs?" Yes. That way she knows acceptable interaction vs. unacceptable, and you just have to keep reinforcing until it all sinks in.

Good luck. Hoping it's an isolated incident.

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answers from Orlando on

The FIRST day my daughter went to daycare (18 months old) she got bit! I couldn't believe it. I loved the daycare, and the teachers reassured me that in this age group, it is biting.. She said in the 2 year old room it was hitting! My daughter is in 2nd grade now and I think now it goes to more hurting peoples feelings or using your words to hurt people. I know it sucks. My daughter got bit probably like 4 times! And stayed at the same daycare until she started kindergarden and guess what the little boy who used to bite her in the 1 year old room , they ended up being friends. lol - I know it's so hard. It will pass .. unless of course they tell you it's the same kid over and over and over again that keeps biting her .... if it happens 2 or 3 times then the teachers should start watching her more closely when she's playing with the little one that keeps biting. If it starts getting out of hand I'd get angry.

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answers from Charlotte on


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answers from Chicago on

Of course it bothers you and you have every right to be angry. These sound like isolated incidents though. I would talk to the person in the room and ask how they handle such things.

When my oldest daughter was in the 3 yr old room, there was a younger child (just moved up to 3s) that was a serial biter. He bit everyone multiple times, every day! I finally had enough and had a conference with the center director and two teachers in the room. I said, "Now I know I'm not supposed to know who the biter is, but I do. What are you doing to stop Max?" They said, "We can't be everywhere at once." I said, "I know, but you can keep an eye on one kid! You know he usually bites kids in the kitchen area (which was around the corner from the changing table and bathrooms), so keep him out of there." They did and it wasn't a problem any more. I was surprised that they didn't think of this simple solution themselves. Anyway, as Max matured, he grew out of biting people.

Good luck!

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answers from Redding on

I think things should depend on how your daycare handles this.
Do they notify you when your child is bitten? I mean, do they bring it up and make you aware of it as opposed to finding teeth marks on your child?
If they know that biting is happening and they let you know, that would at least say that they are very aware of it. What is their protocol for biting?
Neither of my kids were biters, but they were bitten numerous times. And, I didn't like it.
"Kids this age may not be able to express themselves so they bite".
Obviously, not all of them do.
And it's fine for the kid who bites. They're just "expressing themselves".
What about the kids who get bitten?
"Sorry, some kids just get bitten in this life." (?)
I've done daycare. I've dealt with a million kids. I find it interesting that moms who are absolutely opposed to a pop on the seat of the diaper or a light pop on the back of the hand think it's absolutely out of the question because it teaches children to hit, BUT, kids biting is acceptable and in no way teaches kids who don't bite that biting is okay.
Not all kids bite. And I guess the best thing that can happen to another biter is for a kid to get fed up and bite back. Then you can end up with a biting melee.
I'm sure the daycare isn't any happier about the biting than you are. Hopefully the biter's parents don't like it either. Just make sure you understand what the plan is and what happens when a child bites. Are they redirected and moved to another area? If they bite over a toy, is the toy taken away from them and not given back? Are they told that biting isn't nice and offered a chance to hug the child they bit as an apology? How many other kids have been bitten by that same child or children?
You have a right to ask these things and be made to feel comfortable with how it gets handled as opposed to being told, "This is just a normal part of having your kid in daycare."
It may be prevalent, but I don't think we should see it as normal to the extent that it's like hey....let it go. Your kid's probably over it by now.
My little sister was a serial biter and trust me, kids didn't just get over it. She broke the skin and left bruises.
There's no point in mentioning how my mother put a stop to it because it would be seen as inappropriate, but my sister never bit anyone again.
I do agree that little kids who bite don't understand how much it hurts.
So, I would just make sure that you know how biting is handled at your daycare and make sure you and the parents of the kids who bite are notified in a timely fashion.
Kids who get bitten know that biting isn't nice and hopefully the kids who do bite learn a different way to interact with other children.

Best wishes.

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answers from Altoona on

Biting is a part of that age group, but I would take my concerns to the director anyway. If there is a problem with the amount of people that are helping, and the kids aren't getting the supervision or stimulation they need, perhaps the director can do something about it.

My 2nd son was a big biter, but we found out that when he bit someone, it was usually because his teeth hurt or he was just hungry (he seemed to eat non-stop!).

Is there only one child that is running around biting the other kids? I would hate to have my child in a daycare where he would pick up habits like that, but being on the other end of the table, I understand too that it is a normal part of their behavior. If/When you do talk to the director, I would just make him/her aware of the situation (in a calm manner), and ask them what they can do about it. You might also want to find out about the staffing and the schedule that the kids follow. If you can pinpoint a cause for the biting (hunger/boredom/etc) you might be able to help nip it in the bud! Good Luck!

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answers from Kansas City on

I understand that you are upset, it hurts to have someone bite you!! Does your son talk much yet? Give him just a couple of words, play act with him. "No Bite, No Bite." show him how to do this is a loud strong voice. It shows him that he has the right to speak up for himself. (Hopefully, it will also get the attention of the caregivers.)

Good Luck

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answers from Phoenix on

I understand your anger and I would be distraught too. It is normal for this age group. It may help you to know what consequences a child receives for biting another child. Be open and honest with the daycare providers. I know it's difficult to discipline a child that young, but my son started biting his siblings at about 18 mo old. I put him in timeout and he quickly realized that behavior was not going to be tolerated. It is normal for a child that age to "try out" some bahaviors. As long as they see it doesn't get the results they want, they will stop doing it.

Tell the director your concerns. Ask him/her what the consequences are for the biting child and what they are doing to prevent it from reoccurring. Be honest with them and share your feelings with the director. They may make you feel much better about it, or you may walk away feeling like they dismissed your concerns. If you feel they dismissed your conerns than maybe think about changing daycares.

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answers from Savannah on

There's really nothing you can do. It would happen anywhere, at any daycare. Its a mixture of that age group, and that particular group of children.

I taught preschool for a long time and there were times when I'd have an entire season with a class full of no biters.... but then there were seasons when I'd have one or two or more biters.

If he was treated for the bite (witch hazel rub, or peroxide rub...and a little TLC) and if the parents of the biter were properly notified - there isn't anything else can be done.

Hang in there! He will be okay.

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answers from Seattle on

Of course you are angry... your baby got hurt.
It's ok to be angry, but unless you have reasons to believe that your son isn't well cared for, don't direct your anger at the teachers.

When my daughter was that age, also in a good daycare, she bit other children twice and also got bitten once or twice. It's normal behavior for that group. We worked at home with her to address the biting and at daycare she was disciplined with a time out as well. It just lasted a couple of weeks and she got it...

You say that your son doesn't bite... well, he probably will at some point, almost every kids does. So while your feelings are understandable, you also know that that is age appropriate behavior.
If it makes you feel better, ask the teacher how they address this, they will not tell you who the child was, but they will be able to tell you what techniques they use.
Good luck.

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answers from Boston on

Hi M.
I worked as a Toddler Teacher in a very reputable (yuppy) daycare.
Your son would have been the age of children I taught.
If we had a biting incident-it was our fault (the staff) . The reason is-if you have a "biter" in your class-it is your responsibility to keep that child with one on one supervision until they out grow this.
Once we practiced this method-the biting lessened greatly.
Hope this helps.
J. H


answers from Hartford on

it is tough with that many kids to watch! If a child is known for biting then the child cargiver should be watching them closely for the safety of other children.
If you are looking for a new/cheaper place let me know. My sister is a nanny and would nanny at your home. She would be less than the $1,250 you are paying now. She has her BA in Early childhood and is going into her MA in the fall. She is amazing with children and lives in Somers, not to far from Windsor Locks. Let me know. Shoot me a message if interested!
Hope to help!


If you knew it was toxic would you still use it around you kids?



answers from Harrisburg on

You need to first make sure they write up an incident report everytime your son gets bitten. You also need to check out the policy they have on biting and such...almost all daycares have rules/regulations regarding behavior and discipline. My daughter was bitten several times and they did nothing so I took her out of there immediately. You gotta fight for your kid. Good luck!


answers from Boston on

It sounds like there are 2 problems - 1, your child has been bitten twice and 2, you aren't sure the daycare provider is handling it right.

I agree with a previous post that it is essential that you are notified that it has happened, and also that the biter's parents are notified. Was your child bitten twice by the same child? If so, they need to be separated, and the biter should be moved, not your child. Be sure that the room has enough staff to remove a problem child and still leave the others supervised, or see if they have a policy where the director or assistant director comes in to provide an extra staff member. If you are just finding the bite marks, that is unacceptable. My child was bitten once, and the director was at the door to greet me and inform me before I even saw my son, and she told me who did it and what they were doing about it. The emphasis was on my son as the victim, and no one minimized it by saying "all kids bite". I appreciated that.

I understand that many kids bite and it's a common phase. That doesn't make it acceptable. I also understand all the sensory stuff about kids feeling their molars and needing something to chew on - that's pretty easy to fix if that's all it takes. But you can't hand a kid a chewy treat after he bites someone - that's the wrong "reward" approach and the damage is done.

I'd get on top of it even it it means scheduling a meeting with the director - you obviously don't have your questions answered and that needs to happen.

What I would NOT suggest is that you engage the other parents directly, particularly with such young children. It can make them defensive and get in the way of them working with their child. It's important that the daycare senior staff handle this.

Good luck.



answers from Boston on

I'm sorry, my daughter was a biter. It was a phase she went through for a few months around that time either as a response to being pressured or if she got excited. She repeatedly bit one particular boy who was a year and a half older so the daycare provider basically separated them, and when they were together they supervised or had physical items to keep them apart. They did get reintroduced in the same room not long after (maybe a week) and it was fine. It is a phase, luckily, but I am mortified as a parent. As long as the daycare provider is aware and can try corrective behavior, that's pretty much all you can do.

If you are concerned, you can ask the Director what their policies and protocol are in this situation, more out of a question rather than an accusation. You should phrase it as a concerned parent who wants more info rather than an attack on the school/providers.

good luck!



answers from Los Angeles on

My son is 2.5 years old and has been bitten twice. Both times unprovoked. I think the biting continues till they are about 2.5 years old, my son is in a room with 2-3 year olds. The solution that the day care came up with is to put the child that is doing the biting with older children. They have a room with 3-4 year olds and 4-5 year olds. And most of the time they say it works.



answers from San Francisco on

I work as a toddler teacher in exactly the age group your talking about! Let me tell you we try so hard to keep the kids from bitting. We only have a group of 8 with me and one other girl. We only have 2 really bad bitters and I feel horrible telling parents their baby was bit today! We do time out, also telling them bitting is wrong and making them tell their friend they are sorry. We also report it to the parents saying either son/daughter was bit by a friend today or son/daughter bit a friend today. We have had a couple insidents last week which I feel is due to the new children entering and the change of people helping in the room. The parents seem to understand and I tell them every detail except names, gender and stuff that could identify the child who bit them. We also use peroxide and give the child who was bit a little extra love until they feel better (which is fairly quick). I also have a 19 month old who is at a home daycare for now and was bit last week. I was not upset but when she pointed it to me I gave her extra love! Also we tell the parent before they even get a chance to see it so they know we are on the ball and not ignoring the subject! I am glad you spoke to the director I would advise you ALWAYS go to him/her when any problem arises with your child or staff! If my director told me someone complained I would fix whatever I was doing immediatly for the children who deserve the best care!



answers from Boston on

It's always hard to see your little one come home with teeth marks of a classmate, but unfortunately, there's not a lot you can do. It really is just the age and it happens, I think, in every situation where groups of kids this age may be.

The teachers at the two daycares we used when our kids were small, made sure to care for the bitten child first, and then firmly told the biter that biting is unacceptable, etc. That made me feel better that they weren't just throwing their hands up, etc. At that age, they really are too little to know better, but they can learn better behavior as they go. It does end almost as quickly as it starts, if it's any consolation



answers from Tulsa on

There are so many reasons for kids this age to be focused on their teeth and biting...they are growing molars, they are learning to chew different foods, they are learning to talk, etc...ask the center to keep looking and find out if it is one child doing most of the biting or is it all of them.

Biting is a developmental need that has to be satisfied. A child will satisfy this need in any way they can, so if chewy foods (such as bagels, licorice, beef jerky) aren't given, a child will find the next best thing (as in a toddler's arm)! Have the caregiver ask the child's parents if it is ok to give jerky or other chewy foods to the child. Basically, since biting is instinctual and necessary, you need to find positive outlets for the child to use their biting skills on- not try to punish the biter. Of course, the child needs to be told "no" when they do bite, but it should be phrased something like, "We bite food, not people. You hurt your friend." Simple and to the point, lets the child know the consequences of his actions and how it affects others.



answers from Burlington on

I have both kids. My first was the one being bitten, and I felt angry and disappointed that they would "allow" this barbaric behavior. My poor little guy was an innocent in the several occasions that he was bit (in two different rooms). My daughter is now the same age, and she was the biter! Oh, the embarrassment. Our daycare does not tell who bit who, only that she bit a friend today, or he was bit by a friend today. I felt guilty, and of course apologized to every parent in her room, until I figured out who she bit. Seems to be the age/stage. We corrected her behavior at home, and figured out that she was much less apt to bite if she had been medicated for teething. Daycare was not lax, but did say that it is fairly common. We worked with the teachers to make sure that it was not a common occurrence with our daughter. Know that the parents (if they are told) are probably horrified, and that it is a stage that the biters grow out of. Good luck.

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