Helping Develop Children’s Emotional Intelligence

A girl with her head in her hands. Children’s Emotional Intelligence

I think lots of what parents and schools focus on trying to improve children’s numeracy and literacy.  Not enough is done to help develop children’s emotional intelligence.

Apparently one in eight children have a mental health disorder.  I think if we focused on developing children’s emotional intelligence, their ability to cope with their emotions this figure would be a considerably less.  We should be working on ways to help our children be more robust emotionally.  Able to identify how they are feeling and find ways to

Emotional Intelligence should really matter and have a greater focus on the curriculum.  Giving children the strategies to cope with their emotions would make a huge difference to their lives.  Many of us can feel sad or disappointed at various times.  If we knew how to get a handle on our emotions, I am sure we would feel better quicker.  Some children don’t deal with their emotions well and then a simple matter can soon escalate.  They become quick to anger and find it very hard to calm down.

Don’t view Your Child’s Emotions As A Challenge

Boy with sad face holding a heart on a stick. Children’s Emotional Intelligence

Your child will show different emotions.  Try and respond to them in a positive way.  Emotions always serve a purpose.  Your child needs to know it’s okay to feel sad or angry!  What you should do as a parent is help your child find ways to manage that emotion.  Our youngest son copes best left to process his emotions for a bit.  We can give him advise but then we need to give him the space to digest everything we have said.

Develop Their Emotional Vocabulary

They can understand how they are feeling better if they can put a word to that emotion.  One way to do this is with the emotion alphabet game children identify an emotion for each letter of the alphabet.

Build their Self Awareness

If children understand how they are feeling they can step in with the right strategy to help themselves.  Asking your child afterwards how they could have done things differently is a worthwhile avenue to try. Children can identity how reacting to the emotion in another way might have led to a better result.

Persevere with your Child

Lots of patience is needed helping children develop their emotional intelligence.  It’s not always going to be easy.  As parents we don’t always get it right and need to learn to apologize when you make a mistake.  I know I haven’t always handled my child’s emotions in the best way.  But the steps you put in place now will make a considerable difference with how your child can regulate their emotions so hang in there and keep trying.

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