Parenting is undoubtedly an adventure. And this adventure also includes finding answers to teach toddlers about emotions.
So, put on your protective gear of confidence and slay this journey. A parent is a child’s first teacher and their first dearest friend. So, employ skillful methods inspired by love and understanding.
And let us help you gear up for this feat of dealing with stormy emotions. Every successful journey requires a checklist.
So here’s something to make it all easier for you! We promise you can’t forget this one beginning with the vowels A, E, I, O, and U.
Acknowledge & Teach Toddlers About Emotions
Children pick up more by example than by explanations. Breathe deep and control your reactions to a nervous meltdown. Do not scream or react when you encounter an emotional outburst in your child. Be ready to confront it with a determined poise.
Showing disappointment or anger will not address the concerns. You must be positive and look to the bright side by taking this as an opportunity to understand their feelings. Validate their understanding of the world, which differs from what we adults make of it.
Empathize With Your Toddler
What are the emotions your kid is going through? To teach toddlers about emotions, it’s only fitting that parents must understand the situation and how their children feel. That’s empathy! Unfulfilled needs like support and security may be challenging for the child to explain. After all, identifying and meeting those needs before mentoring a child is a parent’s duty.
Child development experts say that toddlers experience diverse emotional outbursts such as kicking, hitting, biting, screaming, fighting, laying on the ground, ignoring parents and many more.
To teach toddlers about emotions does not have to involve any disciplinary action. In contrast to spontaneous reactions, toddlers require empathy to understand their unmet needs and feelings. Do not distract or silence them, as doing so will only result in not fulfilling the child’s emotional needs. Empathy gives your baby the most needed assurance that you are with her through the turbulence.
Identify Reasons & Teach Toddlers About Emotions
Toddler tantrums do not imply that you did not raise your child well. Undoubtedly, the world is a harsh place for the little hearts still new to its nuances. Each child shall cross this stage eventually. However, a parent’s role is to prepare them to cross this stage by being an anchor.
Identifying the reason behind the behavior in your child is essential in teaching how to regulate emotion. Is it frustration about a promise you did not keep? Could it be anger? Wait until they let it out. Ask them to count until a number to feel better. Undertake similar measures, and show your toddler to take deep breaths. Do it along with them to be in sync with their efforts.
Offer Your Support Before You Teach Toddlers About Emotions
Hold their little hands, come down to their level, make eye contact and assure them you are there for them and you understand. Allow them to cry it out instead of bottling it up. In this manner, you will encourage them to heal and learn to self soothe even as grown-ups.
Use sentences like, “I accept your disappointment. I want to help you.”
“You are upset because you did not get what you wanted. I intend to make you feel better”. Do not argue or teach while a kid seems disturbed. Voice out when they are calmer. Offer love to the child, envelop them in your arms if they wish to be. If the child retorts, “Go away”, or hits you, do not take it personally.
Remind yourself that you are the haven and the toddler is experiencing a rough moment. On the contrary, reassure by saying, “I know you love me, you don’t mean to hurt me. I’m here for you, even if you do not want me to be.” Offer your unconditional affection and understanding to your little person.
Usher In Calmness To Enjoy Toddlerhood
Letting your toddler experience the outburst of emotions without tucking away their feelings is sure to usher in calm. On your part, make sure the child is well-rested and not overtired.
Do not fret over judgement by other family members for the choices you make for your child. Remind yourself to pay a deaf ear to retain your composure.
Parenting trek is an adventure. Actually, more of an uphill task because you ought to teach toddlers about emotions, which is crucial. Nevertheless, with confidence and patience, you can scale it. Remember this checklist of AEIOU, put on the sunglasses of empathy, and be steady while you carry the backpack of your toddler’s emotions. The summit of happy parenting is right here!
Also read: How To Teach A Toddler To Self-Soothe