Throughout your child’s life, they will encounter conflict. This is especially true for young children, as they are still developing socially and learning how to interact with others. The disputes your child has at a young age may not seem significant now, but will ultimately impact how they handle conflict as adults. Therefore, it is crucial that your child learn conflict resolution. The Kangaroo Forest has compiled a few tips for how to teach your child this important social skill:
Children must be taught emotional intelligence. They often respond poorly when emotions are heightened, expressing anger and frustration in inappropriate ways. When your child is experiencing conflict with another child or sibling, it is important to discourage aggression, reminding them that nothing can be resolved if they continue to lash out. Parents should lead by example and calmly mediate the exchange.
Allow each child to speak without interruptions
When mediating a dispute involving children, it is important that each child is given the opportunity to recount their side of the story. When one child is speaking, the other child should remain silent and avoid interrupting. This practice encourages active listening and open, honest communication. Ask each child to express their concerns and what outcome they feel would be ideal.
Conflict occurs when two people want to accomplish the same thing but with different approaches. If your children are fighting over a toy, conflict arose because each child wanted the same toy. This conflict cannot be resolved without compromise. In order to resolve this issue, encourage both children to put their heads together and decide on an outcome that is mutually beneficial. Compromise encourages fair, just exchanges.
At The Kangaroo Forest, we recognize the importance of conflict resolution in and out of the classroom. For more information about how our curriculum promotes social development, contact us directly!