Guide for New Parents: The HOW TOs on your Child’s Emotional Development
Emotions are the main factor that affects the behavior of a person. For children, they learn emotions through imitation and experience. Their behavior reflects happiness, sadness, frustration along with many other feelings. Allow this guide to help you steer your child in the direction of proper developmental growth of emotions at different stages.
People, both adult and children, experience difficulties in managing their emotions. Often, parents struggle in helping their child express their feelings appropriately. Parents should keep in mind that taking the time to help and teach their children how to handle their emotions is extremely important and beneficial for their children. It will show the child how to pay better attention to things around them and be less likely to act impulsively. Not only will it help them develop their emotions but it can also help them develop meaningful relationships with others in the future.
Here are some tips that can help you handle your kid’s emotions in relation to emotional development examples that may occur:
- Start with talking about feelings/emotions. Discuss the different kinds of emotions they can feel; Happy, sad, angry, surprised, scared, tired, even include sick, hungry, thirsty, and lonely. Make sure they understand each emotion very well. Talk about what kind of facial expressions might come from different emotions. Explain why they are feeling this way and why they exhibit certain behaviors from these feelings.
- Discuss how they should be able to recognize how others feel. Children need to know how to read other people’s emotions. Your child will be able to identify how others feel by teaching them the basics on how to read facial expressions and body language. This will help them understand and learn how to interact with other people and can help them build better meaningful relationships with others.
Identifying and implementing coping strategies with social and emotional development milestones. To utilize your child’s emotions, you have to help them identify different coping strategies. Let them understand that it is possible for people to lose control; however, there should be different coping strategies in place to help them regain control of their emotions. Some strategies include taking 2-3 deep breaths, counting to 10, sitting in a quiet place, reciting the ABC’s. Every child is different, so you have to implement the appropriate coping strategy for your child.
- Create and write social stories. After figuring out what triggers your child’s emotions and coping strategies that will help them, use it to help them control their feelings. Write a story together wherein it contains the factors that upset your children. You can start with the usual “Once upon a time..” and let them be the main character. For the ending, you can input the coping strategies that helped them conquer the villain or the bad scenario on the story that you have created. Once you created a story, read it to them daily so that they can understand and apply it in real life. Remember, the developing child needs closer attention because this is when they are likely to encounter changes with their physical and emotional aspects.
- Catch them in control. Once your child maintains control, give verbal praise. Children love whenever their good work is recognized. Make sure that your child receives the credits or praises they deserve in handling a situation wherein they became upset. This verbal praise will promote confidence for them to work through inevitable frustrations and teaches them that they can control their feelings and overcome struggles.
Guide them if out of control during the development of emotions at different stages. Help your children calm down if they fail to independently use the coping strategies that you have discussed and developed. Be sure to coach him properly and give feedback on how they behaved. However, avoid coaching them until they calm down. If you start to give feedback during the situation, the situation will only get worse and will make them more upset. Once they are calm, they will be able to think clearly and will also be able to rationalize the situation that happened. Following the breakdown, you can talk to them about what happened, how it made them feel and ask them what could have been the more appropriate way to handle the situation. Let them know that you love them and reassure them that everything is okay.
- Practice the coping strategies every day. One of the most effective and fun way to help your child handle situations is by using role-play. Let them learn through play. Try to practice the strategies by letting them talk about different upsetting situations that could happen. It can help them deal with future upsetting situations. Before you offer guidance or help, let them independently provide as much information about what they would do to handle the situation.
- Be a good guide in showing emotional development examples. Children often copy what they see around them. The way you handle and act in certain situations can be a huge contributing factor that will help them cope with their emotions. They mimic actions that have been exhibited by others whether it’s good or bad. Be a good role model and practice what you preach. Yes we are human and we also get upset, but we have to be careful by the actions we do every day for others can see them.
Children are fragile and innocent. They should be taught how to deal with their emotions to mold them into a mentally healthy, positive thinking person. Parenting is a challenging yet rewarding gift. Guide your child and remember that every move you do affects their emotions and ultimately guides their behavior. That is why we are here at Spec Kid Club. We will provide you pathways to support the development of your growing child. Visit us at http://speckidclub.com/ for more information.