Succeeding in preschool and later life is about more than just having study skills and academic knowledge. Your child also needs to master emotional intelligence, a broad term describing the ability to recognize and control one’s own emotions and empathize with others’. To foster this important skill in your child, take the following steps:
Recognize his emotions: Before a child can begin to control his emotions, he must learn to experience them in a healthy way. You can encourage him to do so by talking him through his emotions. If he is angry, say something like, “I bet you’re angry that your sister won’t play with you, aren’t you? Why don’t we talk about it?” This allows your child to express his emotions fully without losing his temper. He will know that it is acceptable and encouraged to say what he is feeling instead of suppressing his emotions.
Teach him to solve emotional problems: Once your child recognizes his emotions, you can teach him to see that there are often ways he can resolve the issues that upset him, instead of simply staying angry. If he is upset with a brother or sister, encourage him to think of ways he could talk to his sibling to fix the problem.
Help him learn to empathize: Emotional intelligence isn’t just about handling your own emotions; kids also have to learn to recognize and acknowledge what others are feeling. When a friend or family member is angry with your child, encourage him to think about reasons why and how to solve the problem in a way that works for both kids. You should also help your child learn to communicate his emotions to his friends instead of acting out.
Emotional intelligence can be difficult to master, but it is a vital quality for your child to develop in order to be successful. Beginnings School focuses on teaching children to develop healthy relationships and emotional intelligence. To learn more about enrolling your child in our child development center in Weston, call (781) 891-1011.