The importance of developing emotional intelligence in ourselves and in our children cannot be over emphasised in today’s fast-paced and complex world.
When we teach children emotional intelligence – how to recognize their feelings, to understand where these feelings come from and to learn how to deal with them, we are teaching them some of the most essential skills for success in life!
Research has shown that emotional intelligence or EQ predicts over 54% of the variation in success (relationships, effectiveness, health, quality of life) and that young people with high EQ generally earn higher grades, stay in school longer, and make healthier choices.
As parents of our children, when we struggle to have a consistently healthy way of handling emotions ourselves, we are of course, less effective in teaching our kids to handle theirs. This is why the change needs to first start with us – and it is never too late!
Each of these elements contribute to an individual’s personal success and sense of well-being:
- Self-awareness. Knowing our own emotions.
- Self-regulation.Being able to regulate and control how we react to our emotions.
- Internal motivation. Having a sense of what’s important in life.
- Empathy. Understanding the emotions of others.
- Social skills. Being able to build social connections.
Researchers have found that mindfulness practice can help reduce symptoms of stress, depression and anxiety in children (and adults) and this involves a conscious awareness of our breathing as a tool to calm and relax ourselves; constructing some inner calm amidst the external chaos and developing an attitude of kindness, caring and gratefulness. (see the link to ‘Hey Sigmund’ below).
Here at school, within the classroom program, specialist health program and as part of our whole school beliefs about wellbeing and learning, we support children to navigate their way by incrementally building key social and emotional skills that help them to deal increasingly more positively with every day events and challenges. We build a growing awareness of their capacity to achieve their goals, deal with life events and achieve success and satisfaction. Children are made aware of the connection between their thoughts, mood and behaviour, through exploration of peer scenarios – seeking inclusion in games, being refused entry, responding to setbacks and disappointments, dealing positively and assertively with criticism, teasing and bullying.
The closer the parent-school partnership, the greater the opportunity for us to support the development of high EQ in your children.
Some excellent resources can be found at the following websites:
LINK TO KIDSMATTER RESOURCES
And remember – we are here to help and support you in any way we can!