Get to Know Your Child
Get To Know Your Child’s Feelings
Monitoring your children also means knowing how they feel emotionally. Often,
problems grow because children don’t know how to communicate. Start a family
- Together with your child, cut out bright yellow suns, white clouds, dark
clouds, and thunderbolts, one for each family member. Write names on the
shapes and glue them on refrigerator magnets.
- During the day, members of the family set up their emotional weather
reports. Do they feel bright and sunny? A little cloudy? Gloomy as a gray
sky? Angry as a thunderbolt?
Give everyone time to share their emotions, but don’t force them to talk. It’s most
important that you begin to monitor your children’s feelings.
- Are they always gloomy? Do they feel angry often?
- Are they willing to talk about their feelings?
- What makes them feel good? When are they happiest?
Who Are Your Friends
Help set boundaries for choosing new friends now. As your children get older, they
will learn that it’s important to find friends who care about others and act
|Wally Bear and his friends are very important to each other. Use the Character Cards (PDF) to help your children discover why each friend is a good friend to have.
- Talk about what makes your child a good friend.
- I like to...
- I’m always...
- If someone is sad, I...
- I know how to...
- Talk about what’s important in a friend.
- Someone who cares
- Someone who shares
- Someone you can count on
- Someone you can play with
- Someone you can talk to
- Help your children make a list of their friends. What makes each person a good
friend? Think about and discuss their choices of friends.
- Now, check yourself: Do you know each of these children? Have you met their
parents? If not:
- Go to his or her daycare, school, or play group and introduce yourself to the child and, if possible, the parent
- Invite the child to your home to play
- Set up a time to meet the child and his/her parent at the park or playground
Here I Am. Where Are You?
On a large piece of paper, help your child list or draw all the places each of you
goes during the day—work, school, grandma’s house, the babysitter’s, the
recreation center, etc. Talk about when you’re together and when you’re not. Use
this to help your 3- or 4-year-old get to know the day’s schedule. For example:
- When I’m at work, where are you?
- If you’re at grandma’s, where am I?
- Where will I meet you today?
- Who will pick you up from daycare today?
Place the “map” where, each morning, you can talk about the schedule and your expectations for the day. This will not only help you monitor your child, but also give your child a sense of routine and safety, knowing where you are.
If It’s __________ O’Clock, I Must Be __________
Clocks and telling time help 5- and 6-year-olds monitor their own schedules.
- Start with two large paper circles, one for midnight to noon, one for noon to
midnight. Have children select colors to represent their activities: sleeping, getting
ready for school, playing with friends, eating, going to Grandma’s, etc.
- Place the numbers on the round clock faces. Ask your child: What do you do
between midnight and 6 o’clock in the morning? Draw lines to block off that
amount of time on the clock face. Have your child color the time for “sleeping.”
Continue to fill in the clock faces for other activities.
- Have several blank clock faces ready to help your child understand a change in
the daily routine (for weekends, etc.).
- Post the clock faces to help your children know where they will be and what they
will be doing each day.
- As children get older, they will know that any change in their schedule means
they must contact and talk with you. Monitoring your child’s activities will
become a natural expectation.
Please note—to view documents in PDF format, you must have
Adobe’s free Acrobat Reader software. If you do not already have this
software installed on your computer, please
from Adobe's Web site.