4 Ways To Teach Your Child Empathy

As parents, most of us make sure our children are put in the best schools so they can reach their full potential and attain a high level of intelligence. However, one aspect of intelligence that’s often overlooked is emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence is important because it is the key to both personal and professional success, as it deals with the ability of being aware of, controlling, and expressing one’s emotions, and handling interpersonal relationships with logic.

One of the main aspects of emotional intelligence is empathy. It is important that parents teach their children the value of empathy at a young age because of the benefits that will aid them in growing and becoming a well-rounded individual. Children with empathy have more awareness surrounding their environment, tend to be better at handling conflict and difficult situations, are less likely to bullies, and are more likely to be compassionate and kind towards other children.

Here are 4 ways you can teach your child to be empathetic:

1.       Showing them your own empathy:

Children learn by watching others. If you’re not empathetic to them or to others, your child is less than likely to be empathetic. For example, let’s say your child makes a mistake and instead of understanding what might have been wrong, you get mad at them for it. As a result, children will learn to approach mistakes made by their peers in a similar fashion. Empathy helps children learn to be understanding.

2.       Teaching children how to deal with their own negative feelings using self-control:

If a child is unable to figure out why they feel certain emotions, it’s unlikely they’ll know how to deal with them. It’s important that parents teach children how to acknowledge their feelings. For example, if your child throws a temper tantrum after a situation you might deem to be “insignificant”, it’s crucial that you treat the situation with delicacy.

Ask them what made them mad and make sure they understand that their feelings are validated. A lot of parents usually have an urgency to want to fix things right away without making that first step to communicate. It’s important to know that, although frustrating, taking the time to listen will help your child learn how to deal with their emotions.

3.       Encouraging children to read more books and watch TV together:

Children acquire a lot of their role models through fictional characters in TV shows, cartoons, and movies because they unconsciously choose characters to empathize and sympathize with. In books, you can encourage your child to see life through another perspective. In movies, you can explain to them what characters are feeling and dealing with as the storylines develop.

4.       Encourage them to help others in need:

Whether it’s a big or small situation, encouraging your child to sympathize with those in need teaches them to care more about others. For example, if you have multiple children, teach your child the simple trick of trying to understand why one of their siblings might be frustrated in a given moment. Prompt them to ask questions as to why they might be feeling down, if something happened at school, if they were hungry, or if they’re just having bad day. The little questions will go a long way.

Teaching Empathy at Cranium Academy

At Cranium Academy, we value the duality of both academic and emotional intelligence. We pride ourselves in making sure our teachers lead by example and model empathy every day as they interact with students and fellow colleagues.

Making the Most of Birthdays

Birthdays come once a year, and they are special days for everyone, especially young children. They look forward to a whole day dedicated to them, with lots of food and fun in store. If you want to make the most of your child’s birthday, here are some tips to prepare and throw a great party!

Plan ahead

Any good celebration takes some planning in advance. Even when a birthday party is  casual, party-goers need to know what time to show up, what to bring, and how they should dress. Take a look at your calendar, figure out how much time you might need to organize your ideas, and then get to planning.

You can go online to check out videos or parenting blogs about birthday parties that people have thrown for their children. It’s a great way to get inspired and track down resources that you might need. You can even go on party-store websites and just browse to see what themes you like.

Don’t forget, half of the party is the people who show up! When sending out invitations, make sure to send them early. That will give other parents plenty of time to mark down their calendars and make sure their child can attend your party!

Birthdays are for everyone

It’s your child’s special day, but he probably won’t have a good time if none of the other children are having fun. Make sure that when planning the event, theme or location of the birthday party, you take everyone into consideration.

You may be planning on one theme, but your child might want another. No matter how fantastic your idea might be, you should take a step back and think about what your child and his friends would like best. This will ensure that everyone has an enjoyable time.

It’s all about location

The biggest question when planning birthday parties is where should you throw it? There are several options, each with their own pros and cons, that you might want to consider based on the age of your child, her interests and the cost.

At-home parties make transportation a non-issue for you. You can set up everything and have it ready to your exact specifications. The main issue parents have with this is the clean-up afterwards. When the party is over there will be a mess, that you will have to clean up after the exhaustion of hosting everyone.

Parties at indoor locations, like trampoline gyms or museums, make for a memorable experience. They are different and exclusive, exactly what your child would want on a day dedicated to him. The organization, set-up and cleaning are all done by the venue, but the price for these parties tends to be more expensive. Between renting out the space and purchasing the food and supplies, the costs can add up.


Parties at Cranium

At Cranium Academy, we offer amazing party-planning and hosting services for children ages 2-8 years. Nearly exclusive use of our spacious indoor facility combined with two experienced party pros dedicated solely to your party make for a more worry-free experience for you! To learn more about our parties or book a reservation, visit our Birthday Parties page.