Although it’s true that Montessori techniques have been admired as much as they’ve been criticized, it still remains an interesting topic, which we can use in the classroom as well as at home and in the daily education of our children.
Today, we’re going to talk about angry and excitable outbursts that young children display, which are so complicated for us channel, control and understand.
One of the most useful concepts that Maria Montessori left us was sensitive periods. Children, from the moment they’re born to 6 years old, experience what is known as “windows of opportunity.”
These windows of opportunity are instant when children have innate skills to learn and acquire certain competences and skills.
This is the best time to teach them how to handle and understand that complex emotional world that sometimes overwhelms them.
Today, here on our website, we are going to offer you some simple techniques on how to tackle some of the emotional states of your child.
Montessori techniques to handle temper tantrums and anger in children
We all more or less know what form of teaching takes places in the daycare centers that use Montessori techniques.
Basically, these centers put the child’s autonomy first. This mainly focuses on how the child is responsible for her own learning by exploring her curiosity and interaction with everything that her surroundings can provide her.
However, many mothers and fathers asks themselves how Montessori pedagogy can help them in a closer and more primary environment, which is at home. At the end of the day, a child’s home is an immediate surrounding, where she can receive the most basic educational tools.
Let’s look at some advice to think about, which will greatly help parents to channel those angry moments that children can have.
Maria Montessori never “solely” talked about emotional intelligence. According to the famous teacher, emotion and socialization go hand in hand.
When a child has a temper tantrum, what she is feeling is nothing more than the inability of her social environment to adjust to her experience. Specific examples include:
- She can’t have what she wants, she feels offended, annoyed with something or someone, or incapable of waiting for a reward…This all translates into tears, screaming and kicking.
- Emotions come to the surface in this socio-emotive context of the child upon interacting with adults or other children, and this results in the child being unable to distinguish things from each other.
- Despite the fact that some have criticized the Montessori method for offering this so-called freedom and independence to children, we cannot forget something fundamental:
- The adult is the guide, the adult enables learning, and above all, the adult is a model that the child imitates and follows.
- These sensitive periods, which are understood as occurring between birth and 6 years old, are a key milestone that children go through, so that parents are there to respond to every question and attend to each emotion.
Aspects that we must consider in order to channel our child’s emotional world
- According to Montessori techniques, we shouldn’t disregard a single word or piece of behavior of your child, nor compare them to anyone else. These actions will make them angrier.
- Make sure your child feels confident at every moment. For instance, you should ensure that they feel comfortable talking to you, confident about daring to discover the world, talking to other children, playing with other children respectfully, trusting in people and creating things.
- Allow your child to make mistakes. Offer them advice, but allow them to resolve their mistakes on their own. Children need to do things all by themselves in order to feel capable of boosting their self-esteem.
- When a child becomes angry this means that there is something that she does not know how to express. Alternatively, this could also mean that there is some aspect of something in her environment that we must know about and understand.
- So it’s important that, as parents, we guide our children with calm and patience. Never neglect these outburst of excitability, especially if they are small. It is necessary to trace the origin of them and provide strategies to combat them.
In the last couple of years, so-called “calm bottles” have become extremely popular, and are used to relieve stress and anxiety in children. However, it’s important to clarify what their purpose is and how to use them.
- A calm bottle is a visual stimulus that children center their attention on for a few moments, thanks to the movement of the glitter inside the bottle.
- A child must always use one in the company of an adult.
- A child can, for example, take a calm bottle to their bed every day. While your child observes and moves it you can ask her how her day went, or what worries her, what makes her scared, what she likes and dislikes, for example.
- You should ask these questions correctly, without judging her, and also without having to directly ask her. Instead, the questions you pose to your child will be part of a game which fosters her emotional release.
Calms bottles are simple resources that can greatly help us as parents, and they can be easily made at home.