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What causes challenging behaviour?

What causes challenging behaviour?

Every young person at some point will probably behave in a challenging way. It's a natural process of growing up and testing boundaries, as young people learn more sophisticated ways to communicate and express themselves.

The reasons for challenging behaviour can be many and varied and may well lie outside Scouting and its activities. There can be many reasons for young people to behave in a challenging way and as a leader it's important to distinguish between the causes that you can influence and those you can't.

Some behaviours may be linked to medical conditions, disabilities or additional needs. See supporting those with additional needs and neurodiversity for information and guidance on autism. It's important to work with the parent or carers to plan support strategies and to make reasonable adjustments to meet their needs. There may be strategies or a behaviour plan used at school, which you can refer to.

Some challenging behaviour can be a result of boredom or inactivity, or on the flip side too much energetic activity, so the way you plan the programme can have a big impact. There may be factors from outside the section meetings that impact on the behaviour of a young person in a group e.g. bullying, family and social situations or issues that are personal to them that they may not have expressed to you.