The social and emotional development of a child is critical for child development and success in life. That’s why it’s necessary to promote early social-emotional development in classrooms, homes, and daycare centers.
Social-emotional development affects the child’s overall well-being. It’s the ability to recognize emotions, express them properly, and have some control over them. This includes empathy, personal and social behavior, and making choices.
It’s never too early to start, so here’s how you can improve your child’s social and emotional development.
Help Them Recognize Their Emotions
Your child needs to be aware of their emotions. Help your child learn, identify, and name their emotions from a very young age. When they’re upset, angry, or throwing a temper tantrum, talk it through with them and ask them to use words to explain how they feel.
It could have them stumped, but work it out with them to label how they feel.
Teach Them Power Words
Some children find it easier to express themselves in situations, but others need help. This is especially important during conflicts. Help your child learn to stand up for themselves when they feel threatened.
That’s where power words and phrases come in. Simple words can help them show how they feel. For example, you can teach them the word stop with a firm tone and a hand gesture to help them remember it. Using a gesture also helps them do something physical with their body that doesn’t hurt anyone else.
Let Them Learn About Consequences
Your child should know their behavior has consequences. They should be able to make connections between their actions and the response of their actions. You can help them learn this by having them show responsibility for their actions. For example, if they throw toys during a tantrum, ask them to pick them up later.
Do remember that this could result in aggression from the child. To avoid hostility, keep the consequence in connection with the action. Don’t make it about you being angry, and use a neutral tone when addressing them.
Help Them Learn Self-Control
It’s important that you show self-control to your child by being an exemplary model. Set an example by addressing them in a calm way and showing them it’s important to take timeouts or count to ten to control emotions.
Listen to Them
Empathetic listening is crucial. If a child is feeling strong emotions, they need your undivided attention and empathetic ear. Let them know you’re listening by making eye contact, repeating what they say, and reflecting their tone. This will also help your child learn empathy and will encourage them to listen to others better.
Your child’s social and emotional health is important for their growth. That’s why it’s important they have the right support at home, school, and daycare centers.
Whole Child Development Center is an affordable after-school care center, child development center, and pre-school in Lenexa. Not only do we help foster learning and critical thinking, but we also work on your child’s social and emotional development.
Visit our website to find out more.