Ever heard of a ‘street angel house devil’? Here’s how to deal with kids that behave very differently at home

Polite and hard-working at school then moody and lazy at home, children’s behaviour can vary depending on the environment — but there are ways to improve it

If you’re frustrated with your teen’s untidiness, you could allow them keep their bedroom in whatever state they like, on condition the tidy up after themselves everywhere else. Photo: Getty/picture posed© Getty Images

Dr David Coleman

Have you ever heard your child described by another adult and not recognised your child in the description? Occasionally you might get negative feedback about them or their behaviour, but more likely you will be told what a lovely child he or she is, how helpful they are, or how polite and mannerly they are. You compare that with your experience of the same child being rude, self-centred, gruff, lazy and occasionally really challenging. You wonder where this ‘street angel and house devil’ has come from.