Toddlers know a thing or two about experiencing a wide range of emotions, but they know little about handling them. It will be quite a while before toddlers have those strong emotions under control – so until then, what can grown-ups do to help little ones begin to recognise feelings?
How CBeebies can help
Social and emotional development is all about how children learn who they are, what feelings they have, how they behave and how their relationships develop.
So many of the CBeebies shows, songs and activities can be a really helpful way for children to start to recognise, name and express feelings in a safe way. The characters on the shows often talk about their feelings or demonstrate emotions in some way.
A great starting point is for children to begin to name the expressions they see on their favourite character’s face. Try watching any of the following shows together - Balamory, Chuggington, Show Me Show Me or Same Smile –and, with a little prompting from you, give them the opportunity to point out a variety of emotions.
How to make a magic moment
The point at which your toddler begins to reflect on how they are feeling is a moment to be celebrated. It also takes time for little ones to know that other people can feel what they are feeling. The small steps they take on that journey are magical.
You could play a game about feelings with your child. There is a great one on the Tikkabilla web pages. Click on ‘Emotion Theatre’ in the Play Games section of the CBeebies website. Read the story together and watch Tamba’s different emotions. Have a chat about the story afterwards.