4 Fun Ways to Develop Your Children's Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is an important component of our personality. As intelligence in general, EI needs to be developed.

I want to remind you that Emotional Intelligence is the ability to be aware of other people's feelings. It consists of five basic components:

Self-Awareness: the ability to understand our own feelings and the outcomes of our particular emotional reactions.

Self-Regulation: the ability to manage our own emotions and tame impulsive reactions.

Motivation: the ability to act effectively and reach goals despite distracting feelings.

Empathy: the ability to understand other people's feelings.

Social Skills: the ability to manage relationships and predict the response to certain kinds of behavior.

Today, I want to propose to you four fun ways to develop your children's emotional intelligence. For the games that I am going to offer, you should prepare paper cards. Depending on the age of your kids - these cards should show seven main emotions: anger, joy, sadness, fear, contempt, surprise, disgust for children from 3 to 6 years, and different shades of these emotions (for example: fear, anxiety, doubt, guilt, shame, humiliation) for children over 6 years. You can depict emotions on the cards simply by printing them from the Internet.

1. "Alias" about emotions. One player chooses a card with an emotion that will be drawn for other players who have to guess that emotion. You can show emotion with facial expressions, sounds, words, and show a fictional situation. You can use everything that your imagination invents, the main thing is not to name the emotion itself.

2. Association game. You choose the emotion, and the child should name the maximum number of words that evoke such a feeling. For example, you choose the emotion "joy", and the child names everything he/she likes - ice cream, ball games, dogs, a walk, a cartoon about cars, and so on. Over time, you change roles. Also, you can change the order of the plot of the game - the kid says the words, and you guess what emotion your little one feels about it.

3. Discovery of creative emotional potential. Each of the players chooses one emotion. Their task is to draw feelings on paper. Allow your children to express themselves - let them use pencils, markers, paints, they can glue and cut, draw with their fingers instead of brushes. It is important to give children the freedom to express their fantasies on paper - this is one of the forms of art therapy. As kids grow, their perception of the "appearance" of feelings (as on paper) will be transformed into a physical and psychological understanding.

4. Tales. The task of the game is to come up with fairy tales, the heroes of which will be emotions. It is important to describe the feeling in detail - their appearance, their behavior, preferences, and ways of expression. For little ones under 6, adults should come up with these tales (with the help of children, of course), older children can do it themselves.

Such exercises must be joyful and are designed to help kids better understand their and other people's emotions. It is so important that you also take an active part in these games! Show your kids that you are on the same level: you also have emotions, you imagine them in your own way, you are interested in getting to know each other's feelings.

I wish you great success in the world of emotional intelligence!

With love, Elizabeth Cole