These activities will help children develop empathy, which is so necessary in their lives!
Empathy is the ability to understand feelings and emotions, with the aim of putting yourself in the place of the other. From a young age, children must develop this concept to go beyond themselves to have the ability to put themselves in the place of others. Activities to develop empathy in children are essential for their social development as well as for their well-being .
The help to develop empathy in the little ones in the house is very important since it can generate positive and pleasant feelings within them. Being so small, they consider that everything that happens revolves around them, but the reality is different. Every time they get older they realize that this is not real, therefore, it is essential to help them name those emotions and express what happens to them so they will quickly learn to care about the needs of others and to be understanding. Thanks to this, they will be able to acquire all those social skills, fundamental to interact with other people.
Many experts assure that empathy, currently, has been disappearing in society. Human beings have become more selfish , worrying only about ourselves and our surroundings, leaving others aside. This harms the development of children, since adults are their mirror, that is, if they do not see empathy in adults, they will not acquire it.
Empathic children are more communicative because they know how to express their emotions better and they have greater self-esteem because they feel more secure, therefore, it is very important that they learn to listen and be observers.
The verbal language and body language that one of the subjects performs in a communicative interaction transmits a message, emotions and feelings that the other perceives and makes them understand each other in the whole set of elements that intervene. Being empathetic does not mean that both must have lived the same experience, but that both put themselves in the other’s place.
LIMITS OF EMPATHY
Empathy does not imply that the other person has gone through the same experiences. Empathy can be appreciated to a greater or lesser extent in people, as in children and adolescents. Children often have difficulties to put themselves in the shoes of other people since, as I said before, they have an egocentric vision in which the center of attention is themselves along with their needs.
Therefore, it is very important to take into account the stage of development of children, and to understand that at certain ages and in certain situations, in which friction occurs between children and parents is normal, since children are still it is unfolding. Empathy is a skill that has to be fostered little by little.
THE IMPORTANCE OF DEVELOPING EMPATHY DURING CHILDHOOD
Next, we give you the keys to why it is essential to develop empathy during early childhood education:
– Helps children develop their social and communication skills.
– Promotes emotional development in order for children to focus on what is around them instead of focusing attention on oneself.
-Enrich the development of emotional intelligence .
GAMES AND ACTIVITIES TO DEVELOP EMPATHY IN CHILDREN
Parents play a fundamental role in this section since they are in charge of ensuring that their child is empathetic and understanding, reaching beyond his person. Next, we propose a series of games and activities to develop empathy in your little ones at home:
– Stories and movies are a means for children to learn to be empathetic and to know how to put themselves in the place of others. The Bambi film is an example, as various feelings and emotions are perceived in it. The death of Bambi’s mother is a fact of the film that helps children to empathize with Bambi for the death of their mother.
– Do theater . This activity means that through the representation of various characters in a story, it is positive for them to realize how each character feels.
– Draw pictures that express different emotions . We can ask the child to draw us how he feels at that moment. Thanks to this activity, we help you little by little to express how you feel, whether you are sad, happy or angry. You will know how to name each emotion and you will understand when the other person has those same feelings.
– Enroll him in extracurricular classes with the aim of acquiring self-confidence.
KEYS TO DEVELOPING EMPATHY IN CHILDREN
-Share moments with the children to know how they are and to talk about the feelings of other people so that they understand the concept of putting themselves in the place of others.
-Taking your opinion into account when making decisions helps in the development of empathy. For example, when making decisions about a plan or trip, listening to your opinion is important to them. Of course, it should not be his opinion that is always done, from time to time, it is correct to say no so that he learns to tolerate frustration.
– Promote healthy guilt, that is, if there is a conflict between your child and another person, take advantage of this feeling and use it as a tool to improve their empathy. Thanks to this, you will be able to empathize and reflect on what happened.
– Avoid imposing labels on them. With the imposition of labels on our children, we make our child limit himself and this is negative for his development.
-Give an example. Parents are the mirror, therefore, we must teach them how to behave with others.
– Ask them if something good or bad has happened to them during the day. This causes children to open up and share their feelings and emotions with others.
– Reward them for their good deeds. If we reward them for their good deeds, it is likely that in the future they will do it again.
Dr. Tabriella Perivolaris, Sara's mother and fan of fashion, beauty, motherhood, among others, about the female universe. Since 2018 she has been working as a copywriter, always bringing to her articles a little of her experience and experience as a mother and woman.