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The naughty step is a good thing, say researchers. Do you agree?


Looks like the naughty step may be due a bit of a comeback – as a new study shows it's actually one of the most effective ways of dealing with certain kinds of toddler tantrum.

The naughty step's recently been rubbished by many parenting experts as being too negative a way to discipline a tantrumming toddler; they tend to recommend reasoning with your child or offering a compromise.

But, when it comes to a toddler who is being defiant or hitting, say scientists at Oklahoma State University, time out on a naughty step 'more effective than reasoning'. And, they say, 'used consistently... it significantly reduces problem behaviors over time.'

But what do you think? Would you put your toddler on the naughty step? Or do you prefer to do something else when it's tantrum time?

Please do let us know by adding a post to this thread. We'd love to hear your views.


  • Absolutely yes, couldnt have got by some days without the naughty step. Only problem now is my toddler sits on the step with her big sister!

  • We still use a step now with my girls 5 & 7. We don't call it a naughty step tho just the step and they go there to calm down and assess what has happened. I don't have a specific area although at home it's generally the bottom step of our stairs...In our old house it was the black mat by the door etc if I'm out I will improvise and use various places a bench if we are in the park etc...

    My 5 year old hates it and takes longer to calm but it does work and she will use the time to get out her anger etc and then she comes back and we talk about why she ended up on the step in the first place. It means I spend less time shouting and more time resolving the conflict and they are able to come to their own resolution. 

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