Your Parenting Info Sign Up

3 Ways to Teach our Children Emotional Intelligence

by Joe Lawrence | April 6th, 2016 | Communication, Elementary

egg huntCommunication skills are essential for people of all ages. Most of the issues we have in this world are because of communication gone badly. Although, there is no definite cure for this ongoing issue, there are some things we can teach our children to be better at communicating their thoughts and feelings.

In the business world, emotional intelligence is one of those buzz phrases. It is said to be a leader, one must have a high emotional IQ. I can’t say I always agree with the fad, but there is certainly something to take away from it. We all know those bosses that simply do not understand when someone is upset or pick up on a sarcastic remark. Most husbands misunderstand the “I am fine” from the Mrs. as if she really is fine. Communication cues are missed all the time.

We have worked with my daughter since a very young age to understand what emotions and body language cues to pick up on. I can tell her to go to her room in an angry voice, and she can sense if I really mean it or not. Then again, I can just give her a look and she is running to her room.

I thought about how good she was at this today after an Easter egg hunt at our community center. There were a couple of kids who did not get very many eggs and she noticed how sad they were. Then she went up to them and offered some of her eggs to them. This made me extremely proud, and it reminded me of the things we worked with her on in our home.

First of all, when she was very young, we worked on reading expressions. “This is a sad face, happy face, etc” and then we made her mimic them so she could see what it felt like to make those expressions.

Next, we would ask her about she was feeling. “How does it make you feel when daddy takes your toy?” We let her talk it out and guide her through those feelings. It is important that kids understand how to read emotions and what they mean before moving on to the next phase.

Lastly, we had her witness other kids and people and witness how they were expressing emotions. After awhile it became second nature for her to not only read the facial expressions,but the body language, too. After her telling us what the emotion was she would need to tell us how to make them feel differently.

It is never too early or too late to start working with our children on understanding emotions. Once they learn to read expressions, they can learn to tailor their actions and words to truly convey a quality communication.

Comments on 3 Ways to Teach our Children Emotional Intelligence