Let’s begin this blog with a general scenario – Your 7-year-old comes back from school one day and is cranky and sulking over nothing for the longest time. After some coaxing, you realize that he had a fight with his friend from school over muffins. The other kid called your child a thief, and so, they aren’t friends anymore!
Now, what would you do in such a scenario? Yes, we know, like any concerned parent, you will be quick to your toes and inquire about what’s wrong. You might even try your best to resolve the issue between the two kids so that they both can be back to their usual happy and chirpy selves.
However, do you know that while conflicts like these may sound trivial to your adult ears, they can leave an everlasting impression on your child? In fact, some of such instances can even end up cropping long-term psychological and behavioral issues in kids! To avoid such things, it is important that instead of getting involved in resolving the conflicts of your kids, try and instill them with conflict resolution skills so that they learn to resolve their issues on their own.
So today, in this blog below, we, at The Navyandhra School, ranked among the best preschool in gurgaon, will shed light on why it is important for you to focus on fostering conflict resolution skills in your little ones and how you can go about the same. Read on.
Why is it important to resolve conflicts positively?
Before we move on to discuss why it is vital to imbue conflict resolution skills in kids, let us first understand why it is necessary to teach them to get the conflicts resolved on a positive note.
As you all may know, it happens more often than not that children find themselves in unfamiliar situations that they can’t even control. Though that may still sound normal to many, it might turn into a problem if they don’t know the correct protocol to follow during such situations. For example, what should have been your child’s best course of action when his friend called him a thief?
At The Navyandhra School, one of the best preschool in gurgaon, we firmly believe that hitting back or verbally assaulting the other kid is never the option, and thankfully, most parents agree to it. However, not saying anything or simply walking away is also not the best move. Not only does it reinforce in the other kid that it is ok to accuse others without proof, but it is also not good for your child’s self-confidence.
When it comes to conflict resolution, the key is healthy and open communication. The more you encourage your child to express his/her feelings with clarity, the better are his chances at explaining his/her stand to others when faced with conflicts.
Practical strategies and tips for fostering conflict management skills in children
In over 90% of conflicts, the main culprit is emotions. For children (and even many adults), feelings and emotions can be difficult to wrap their heads around. The confusing aspect of human emotions is that they are multi-faceted. Often, the sentiment on the surface, for example, anger, is just a façade that hides deeper feelings such as fear, sadness, embarrassment, etc.
So, the first skill to teach kids is how to identify and control their emotions. A great way to do this is to ask them to maintain emotion journals to write how everyday situations make them feel. You can periodically use their journals to help them understand various emotions that hide in plain sight. Once you teach your kids the socially appropriate way of reacting to emotional triggers, they will be in a better position to recognize and control their emotions whenever posed with any conflict situation.
Once your children learn to identify their emotions, next comes the important step of teaching them how to stay calm in the face of conflicts. Since anger is one of the most common reactions people have (adults and children, both), teaching them how to contain their anger and stay calm is essential. As they say, an angry man closes his eyes and opens his mouth; it is impossible to think logically if you are angry. This makes it essential to get the anger in control, and that can only be done when they know how to calm themselves down.
Controlled breathing exercises, positive thought training, and even humming are excellent ways to calm down immediately. Doing 15-20 seconds of such activities can help a person to collect his/her thoughts and release the pent-up energy.
At The Navyandhra School, recognized among the best preschool in gurgaon, we firmly believe that a very important aspect in conflict resolution is to put yourself in another person’s shoes and try to assess the situation from others’ perspective as well. As such, it is really important that you teach your kids to be active listeners so that they don’t just hear but rather listen, understand, and then analyze the situation with a calm and clear mind. The good thing is that when you teach your kids to grow into keen listeners, it not only comes to their aid in conflict resolution scenarios but also helps them become more empathetic and respectful individuals.
We, at The Navyandhra School, believe that being upset about a situation is a completely fair ask, but if you don’t resolve the cause of the conflict, it can pile up in the form of negative emotions. On the other hand, when children are taught the crucial life skill of conflict resolution right during their early years, they not only learn to be patient listeners but also grow with strong communication skills and clarity of thoughts. Moreover, children grow more aware of themselves and their surroundings and turn out to be better and more innovative problem solvers. In this regard, here’s hoping you found this blog insightful and will use the tips and strategies to teach your kids how to be better at handling as well as resolving conflicts.