We often have childhood memories of learning the alphabet, the days of the week, or counting to 100. However, some of the most useful life skills can sometimes be interpreted as a “random encounter” or be taken for granted entirely.
As early childhood educators at Early Birds Education & Childcare, we understand the importance of teaching children about feelings, as well as ensuring they have a strong sense of wellbeing.
At Joseph Banks Education & Childcare, in Forest Lake, we believe in creating confident, involved and self aware learners, by showing them how to better understand themselves through their likes, their dislikes, their feelings and the feelings of others.
When interpretting such emotions children need guidance, and what better way to learn, than by playing games!
Our Joseph Banks educators have come up with a few fun activities which assist our little early birds to better recognise and understand their emotions. For example, once they’ve identified whether they’ve felt “happy”, “sad” and so on, through the use of colourful visual aids, we then discuss the emotion and why they may have felt this way. This group activity encourages children to better communicate their experiences and further develop a sense of self awareness.
It’s incredibly important for children to grasp these concepts when learning how to better take care of themselves and empathise with others.
We can then extend up on this learning by identifying the most appropriate reaction to someone else’s emotions. This is done through a reward system, also known in the classroom as “filling our buckets” which helps children visualise positive behaviours and reflect on why these behaviours are helpful and kind.
These behaviours and actions include, “being a good listener”, “being a helpful friend”, or “participating with others”.
Providing these types of learning experiences, in a safe environment, gives children the social and emotional tools they need to deflate stressful or challenging situations, as well as effectively contribute to their community.
Learning about their emotions, how they tend to react and recognising how others react, are invaluable life-skills which will benefit them in school and far beyond.