We always joke around that our middle child, Kitty-boo, has anger management issues because she tends to be the foot stomper and door slammer in the family. In all seriousness, at the age of 4 1/2, it is really starting to become less “cute” and more frustrating! I have noticed that no matter what emotion she is feeling, she always reacts in anger. For example, if she falls down and hurts herself, she freaks out, screams, and stomps to her room! This is the same reaction that we get when we tell her “no” or if her sister says something mean to her. It became apparent to me that she needed some help differentiating between her different emotions, and learning the appropriate reaction to each one! We recently made this emotions chart to help facilitate some meaningful conversations about how we are feeling. I purposefully did not put her name on this chart, it is for anyone in the family to use. Each morning I ask Kitty boo to change the face to how she is feeling (usually “happy”) and if there are any “incidents” throughout the day we change the face and talk about what is and isn’t ok to do when we are feeling that way. I
If you are thinking this sounds a little touchy feely for your family, I completely understand. We never had to talk to our older daughter about emotions, although we are now! But I think that as parents we are often called out of our comfort zone in order to meet the needs of our children, whatever those needs will be. So here we are, getting all in touch with our emotions!
Here is what you need:
Foam Sheets (although construction paper and contact paper to laminate would work)
Step 1) Draw and body on the white paper. Leave the head blank (this is where the face will go), draw hair if you like
Step 2) Have child decorate the clothes, write “I’m feeling…” on the paper
Step 3) Laminate with contact paper, or slip inside a clear plastic sheet protector. Tape to the fridge
Step 4) Cute circles out of different colors of the foam sheets (one color per emotion)
Step 5) Using a Sharpie, draw a different face on each one (I also wrote the emotion under each face for my older daughter to read)
~ Angry, Sad, Frustrated, Embarrassed, Happy, Surprised, Shy, Confused, etc. Pick a few that are most common to your child.
Step 6) Glue the magnet buttons to the back of each face
That’s it! Now just sit back and let the chart guide you through some conversations about feelings. It has been very interesting for us to be more aware of each others emotions. I don’t think the kids ever thought I was capable of feeling the same emotions as them! Eye opening