Turn your little monster into a angel in these ways!
A frustrated child is never easy to handle. Help you child with three quick ways!
1. Verbalising his thoughts
When parents help children verbalise feelings, children then learn to use words to express themselves instead of showing undesired behaviours to express themselves.
For instance, as your child displays his frustration, you can help to verbalise his emotion, "I can see that you are mad with your falling blocks when you scream and yell, and your fists are clenched." Make eye contact with your child, start modelling three deep breaths, and say, "Take a deep breath in... and out... and in... and out... (repeat "in... and out..." three times)".
As your child follow your lead and calm himself down, praise him by saying, "You are such a big boy (or girl) now! You have learnt to calm yourself down.”
2. Managing his expectations
Some children have high expectations of themselves, e.g. they want to draw perfectly straight lines or cut out perfect shapes. You can help your child to regulate expectations of himself by showing praise and appreciation for things that he has done, even though he may not be perfect.
Let them know diligent practice can help him master his skills, share your own stories about how you learned a new skill in the past.
3. Coming up with coping strategies
Think of a coping strategy together with your child. Some simple ways including taking three deep breaths, taking a walk, or doing an activity together! Of course, it will not be easy at the start. Children tend to forget about all these copying strategies when they are truly frustrated.
To help them in self-regulating their emotions, come up with a book of emotions where you and your child document the different types of emotions he experienced, and the coping strategies that he has previously used! Refer to the book whenever he becomes upset or frustrated!
KidzMatters is an online resource on all matters regarding parents and infants to 6-year-olds. Subscribe to KidzMatters for more news, tips, updates and activities!
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