7 Ways to Help a Child Cope With Anger
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Teach Your Child About Feelings
Kids are more likely to lash out when they don’t understand their feelings or they’re not able to verbalize them. A child who can’t say “I’m mad!” may try to show they're angry by lashing out. Or a child who isn’t able to perceive or explain that they're sad may misbehave to get your attention.
Create an Anger Thermometer
Anger thermometers are tools that help kids recognize the signs that their anger is rising. Draw a large thermometer on a piece of paper. Start at the bottom with a 0 and fill in the numbers up until 10, which should land at the top of the thermometer.
Develop a Calm-Down Plan
Teach children what to do when they begin to feel angry. Rather than throw blocks when they're frustrated, for example, they might go to their room or a designated "calming corner."
Encourage them to color, read a book, or engage in another calming activity until they feel better. You might even create a calm-down kit. This could include your child's favorite coloring books and some crayons, a fun book to read, stickers, a favorite toy, or lotion that smells good.
Cultivate Anger Management Skills
One of the best ways to help a child who feels angry is to teach them specific anger management techniques. Taking deep breaths, for example, can calm your child's mind and their body when they are upset. Going for a quick walk, counting to 10, or repeating a helpful phrase might also help.
Don't Give In to Tantrums
Sometimes kids discover that angry outbursts are an effective way to get their needs met. If a child throws a temper tantrum and their parents give them a toy to keep them quiet, they will learn that temper tantrums are effective.
Follow Through With Consequences
Consistent discipline is necessary to help your child learn that aggression or disrespectful behavior isn’t acceptable. If your child breaks the rules, follow through with a consequence each time.
Time-out or taking away privileges can be effective discipline strategies. If your child breaks something when they are angry, have them help repair it or do chores to raise money for repairs.
Avoid Violent Media
If your child displays aggressive behavior, exposing them to violent TV shows or video games may exacerbate the problem. Focus on exposing them to books, games, and shows that model healthy conflict resolution skills.
source: Verywell Family
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