Tuesday, July 12, 2011
Teaching Emotional Intelligence during play
Do you want your children to have an advantage in every aspect of their life? Forget about academics, teach them emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is probably the most important thing you can model and teach your children. It gives them tools they will need to regulate their emotions, empathize with others, think, reason, create, overcome obstacles in life, and rise above in the face of difficulties. Emotional intelligence is probably best taught through modeling and empathy – but let’s not forget about teaching it during the realm of PLAY!
Here is a great article about Emotional Intelligence…
I have been working on emotions with my son from a very early age. I had these emotion cards that I used with my students before I became a PAHM. Initially we would just look at the pictures and I would state the emotions. They were already laminated (from my classroom). I added Velcro to the back so my son could put them on his felt board. Watching the progression and his emotional intelligence blossom has been quite amazing. Many people say that toddlers do not understand emotional intelligence. In my son’s case, I tend to disagree. If we are out, he identifies the feelings of those around us and shows empathy for them – “Mommy, she’s sad? We need to give her a hug. Im so sorry she is feeling that way. Maybe a hug would make her feel better.” These picture cards are a great way to reinforce and talk about emotions. They inspire critical thinking and open ended questions as well. :)
(These are stored just under his felt board - the large set is in the basket and I have a smaller set in on of the pockets of the organizer. HE initiates this play.)
He is telling me how all of the children are feeling.
Showing me what "thinking" looks like. LOL
Showing me "surprised".