It is no secret that tiny humans can have huge emotions, but how do you react to their big feelings, and better yet, how do you teach them to process them? Keep reading for some tips to equip yourself and your preschooler for situations when those emotions threaten to spill out.
It is not a bad thing to have big emotions, in fact, some big emotions are good such as happiness and excitement. It is the tougher ones like anger and impatience that can be harder to deal with in the moment.
There are resources available that might help you steer your preschooler in the right direction. Many books are available that you can enjoy together with your toddler such as How Do You Feel? by Lizzy Rockwell, Llama Llama Mad at Mama by Anna Dewdney, or Big Feelings by Alexandra Penfold to demonstrate to him how to deal with his feelings. The PBS Kids show “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood” has many episodes depicting Daniel and his friends experiencing big emotions such as sadness, anger, hurt feelings, and fear. Throughout the episode they learn safe and healthy ways to deal with those feelings. These are great to watch with your preschooler and then when your toddler is in a similar situation, you can remind him how Daniel and his friends expressed themselves.
It is important to help your preschooler learn to deal with big feelings before the situations arise. Play a game of pretend with your toddler. Act like you are angry. Play out some different ways you can express it and ask your toddler each time if it was appropriate. Roll on the floor kicking and screaming. Another time, clench your fists tight and count to ten. Next, you can yell, scream, and stomp your feet. Ask your child which way was the best way to react. Your child will probably get a kick out of seeing a grown-up act that way!
While it will take some time and practice (like with anything) to get those big feelings under control, be sure to praise your toddler when you see progress is being made. Hopefully, he will be encouraged to keep improving!
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Want to learn more about Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academy of Bella Terra located in Richmond, Texas? Our mission is to provide secure, nurturing, and educational environments for children ages 6 weeks – 12 years. We help children to bloom into responsible, considerate, and contributing members of society. For more information, give us a call or stop by for a tour! We’d love to get to know you and your family.