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Promoting A Healthy Emotional Development In Children

Instilling good emotional development in children is one of the most important things parents can do in fostering their toddlers. Naturally, toddlers have certain innate emotional abilities, but their understanding depends on their interactions with others during the early years of their life.

Ways to Enhance Your Child’s Emotional Development

Promote Positive Family Reinforcement

Toddlers always want to be asserted with their parents love and support. Thus, it is imperative to praise your toddler’s good behaviors. Each time he does a good deed, congratulate him. Whenever you see your little one exerting effort to dress on his own or fix his toys, give encouragement. If in case expected outcomes are not attained, give encouragement. Avoid scolding and negative criticism. Once your toddler sees that you are ready to listen, he can openly express his feelings without the fear of being judged.  As a result, a strong emotional resilience is created which will help your toddler in his adolescent years.

Give Feelings A Name

Train your toddler to use language rather than actions. This helps your toddler properly express his emotions. Teach him words like happy, hungry, sad, mad or scared. Once he learns how to name his emotions, he can better articulate them. So instead of crying or hitting, he can simply say “I am hungry.” or “I am mad.”.

Set A Good Example

Be your toddler’s role model. Since he likes mimicking his mommy and daddy, be cautious with your words and actions. Deal with your feelings by using acceptable coping methods. If you get mad, go to your room for awhile to give you time to calm down. Or, you can channel your emotions into something productive like cooking or painting. Once your toddler sees you do peaceful deeds inspite of your anger, eventually, he will follow you.

Nurture Him With Your Love and Affection

One-on-one contact is important to toddlers as it conveys the message that they are loved. Every day, never forget to express your unconditional love for your child. Lots of noisy kisses, cuddling, hugging, singing, talking and laughing whether he is happy or sad, cranky or energetic teaches your toddler that he will be loved under all circumstances. The attention you give enables him to properly develop his emotions molding him into a cheerful and likeable individual.

Pay Attention

If you want to learn anything, then you have to pay attention. Your toddler’s early experiences will shape the way he perceives things. Identify what triggers his tantrums and what makes him happy. Exaggerate your expressions by telling your toddler “Do not hit your brother, you wouldn’t want to make him cry do you?” or “The doorbell rang. Let us see who’s there.”. By encouraging your toddler to be more sensitive with his surroundings and the people around him, he can better grow, adapt and adjust his emotions.

Encourage Creative Play

Structured creative play activities like role playing, puppet shows, craft projects, baking cookies, playing with clay and painting lets your toddler express emotions he may have difficulty verbalizing. This allows him to convey his own thoughts and ideas. Plus, it serves as good practice in handling certain situations (e.g. bullying) he might encounter.

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