I fully agree that kids' EQ development is very important because it can help children recognise and understand their emotions. Then they can learn and benefit from controlling their emotions.
My daughter Winchi is going to be three years old in August. She is adorable and a fast learner. She started to learn about emotions like love, sadness and fear when she was only two.
We have trained her to keep her toys back in the storage bin after playing. There was one time when she refused to keep her toys back after playing with them. The whole dining hall was very messy with her toys scattered around. Then I told her: “Mummy is so sad because Winchi didn’t keep the toys back. Mummy might fall down if she steps on a toy and slips ….” I then showed her a sad face.
Immediately, she understood and kept the toys back. I was so proud to see that she could understand what sad was. The next day, she told her daddy that mummy was sad. I think this has made her more responsible.
Like a lot of children, Winchi fears insects and dark places. She dares not enter her room without switching on the light. And she will scream if she sees insects - even ants! To overcome this fear of insects, I bought her some books about insects and insect toys like a grasshopper, beetle and bees. At first, she was afraid and dared not touch the insect toys. I told her stories about insects and showed her how to play with the insect toys. Soon, she warmed up and loved it and even laughed a lot when I dropped the insect to the floor. One day, she saw ants in the house and said to her father: “Daddy, got ants. I not afraid of ants. Ants is very small. ChiChi (this is how she called herself) is big.” And then she killed some ants by stepping on them. We were glad to hear what she said and we know she is more confident now.
I am now expecting my second child. Winchi loves the baby and looks forward to playing with baby. However, when I take her toys and play music for baby, she gets jealous and refuses to share her toys. This a another challenge for me to develop her EQ to manage jealousy. I have bought her books on jealousy. We have also talked about her emotions. Sometimes, she can even make a jealous and sad face. This really makes me laugh till I cry.
I believe the EQ of a child can be developed if we recognise, understand and discuss emotions with our child. We need to raise a high EQ kid in order to help them become more sociable when they go to school. More importantly, we must spend quality time with them every day.
Tan Kui Lim