This blog looks at an example of how the Little Wise Box of Emotions for 3-6 year olds can help children to learn how to manage their emotions and feelings.
One of the benefits of the Little Wise Box of Emotions is the opportunity it provides for little ones to get really hands on and interactive in their exploration of social and emotional development. Not only does this make the whole process more engaging and fun, it can also empower kids (and parents) to be able to explore situations in more depth than they might otherwise do through talking alone.
As well as exploring social and emotional development more generally, the kit also provides a great opportunity to explore more specific situations. For example, it might be that you’ve noticed a particular event that regularly triggers big emotions in your child, such as worry, anger or frustration. You could start off by looking through the different facial expressions/feelings in the kit and ask/help them to identify which ones are relevant to that particular situation. You could talk about how each of these emotions make your little one feel (not forgetting how these feelings present themselves physically too, such as a knot in the tummy, feeling hot and so on and so forth). For younger children, this could also involve extending their vocabulary and introducing them to new names of different feelings (such an important part of developing children’s social and emotional intelligence). You could then validate their feelings, offer empathy and understanding, and reassure them that no emotions are bad, it is how we react to them that is important. You could then brainstorm together and identity different ways to handle the situation next time. And then of course praise them when you see them implement some of their new techniques.
Often these conversations might need to happen several times before you start to see a difference. But, like sponges, bit by bit children are soaking everything up and are learning so much that they will benefit from for years to come.