Kate Middleton Uses Code Words to Let Her Kids Know They're Acting Up in Public

Kate Middleton reportedly has a code word phrase that she uses with her kids to let them know that they're getting out of line.

  • When it comes to Kate Middleton's super powers (opens in new tab), being an incredible mom is at the top of the list.
  • According to a report from The Sun, the Duchess of Cambridge uses code words to communicate with her kids, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, especially in public.
  • Kate also uses techniques like touching her kids' foreheads when they start to act up and getting down on their level to communicate, according to parenting expert Dr. Rebecca Chicot (opens in new tab).

Kate Middleton (opens in new tab) is a lot of things. She's a duchess (opens in new tab), a philanthropist (opens in new tab), and, of course, an amazing mom (opens in new tab).

Anyone who has ever raised (or, TBH, even babysat for any length of time) kids the ages of the Cambridge kids (opens in new tab)Prince George (opens in new tab), 6, Princess Charlotte (opens in new tab), 4, and Prince Louis (opens in new tab), 1—knows that achieving the kind of near-perfect behavior they display in public is no easy feat of parenting.

This is just a normal fact of life: Kids will be kids and that means not acting like perfect, miniature-sized adults every second of every day. Add to that the very public nature of being a member of the royal family, though, and Kate's parenting prowess (opens in new tab) is nothing short of incredible.

So, how does the Duchess of Cambridge (opens in new tab) do it? She has a secret language of sorts for communicating to George and Charlotte (opens in new tab) (and, someday, Louis) that they need to check their behavior.

kate middleton and kids

(Image credit: WPA Pool)

According to a report from The Sun (opens in new tab), Kate's code word phrase for "calm down" is pretty simple: "Let’s take a break."

When Kate announces it's time for a break, George and Charlotte (opens in new tab) know that it's time to take things down a notch and, if they aren't out in public at the moment (because this code is used behind closed doors, too), they take a few minutes to engage in a quiet, solo activity, like reading a book or doing a puzzle, to regroup.

"It’s very hard for any parent to have to parent in public," Dr. Rebecca Chicot (opens in new tab), founder of Essential Parent and the author of the Calm and Happy Toddler (opens in new tab), told The Sun (opens in new tab)

Kate also has some physical communication techniques that help her keep George and Charlotte calm in public, Chicot says.

"She seems to be good at making warm contact 'touch to the head' which is a nice connection," Chicot explained. "She gets down to their level to talk to them but let’s them be children. She has a lovely balance of sensitivity and gentle boundaries. She doesn’t expect them to behave like little adults and knows that children go through perfectly natural stages like tantrums."

kate middleton and kids

(Image credit: Samir Hussein)

"Kate is a sensitive and warm mum," Chicot added. "This is a called an authoritative style of parenting that is now encouraged. This is compared to an autocratic parenting that was encouraged in some circles in Victorian times (e.g. children should be seen and not heard)."

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Kayleigh Roberts
Weekend Editor

Kayleigh Roberts is a freelance writer and editor with more than 10 years of professional experience. Her byline has appeared in Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, ELLE, Harper’s Bazaar, The Atlantic, Allure, Entertainment Weekly, MTV, Bustle, Refinery29, Girls’ Life Magazine, Just Jared, and Tiger Beat, among other publications. She's a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.