It’s hard to see a child unhappy. That’s why adults often rush in to offer immediate relief. But as psychologist Susan David, author of Emotional Agility, points out, this doesn’t help children in the long run.
When teachers help preschoolers manage emotions in the classroom, those children become better problem solvers when faced with emotional situations, and are better able to engage in learning. In teenagers, “emotional intelligence”—the ability to recognize and manage emotions—is associated with greater self-esteem and ability to manage stress.
Dr. David offers four steps for helping a child go through, rather than around, a negative emotion and emerge ready to move on:
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