Date of this Version



© 2005, The Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska on behalf of the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Extension. All rights reserved.


If you are a parent, guardian or child-care provider, witnessing children fighting is a common occurrence. Fighting or aggressive behavior can occur in various forms, whether it is slapping, grabbing, screaming, pinching, kicking, spitting, biting, threatening, teasing or a variety of other actions.

There are four different types of aggressive behavior: accidental, expressive, instrumental and hostile. It is important to understand the different types of aggressive behavior that children may display so your responses are effective.

This NebFact discusses these behaviors and the general skills needed in handling your children's aggressive behavior.