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One of the more important stages in parenting and raising a preschooler is the ability of self-control, which develops between the 3rd and 6th year of life. What is this ability and why is it so important? You can say that, the goal of the whole process of raising a child is reaching a state, in which the child, and later - a grown up is able to plan their actions, make smart decisions and wisely react to changes in their surroundings as well as well as restrain from sudden negative emotions, which are harmful to them and to others around them. Self-control is the ability to restrain from abruptly reacting under the influence of your own emotions (‘I’m angry, so I’ll punch someone’) and/or outer influences (‘I see a wonderful toy so I want it now!’). Self-control is about being able to plan.
Kids reach a milestone in developing self-control at their 3rd year. It starts when 3 year olds decide on being independent , so we often get to hear „I want to… by myself”. This really is a good moment to grant your child a degree of independence. While keeping an eye out for dangers of course (hot beverages, fire). It’s worthwhile not to do everything yourself even though the child will act unskillfully (spill or brake something). Every time we want to take an activity away from the child (Yes! It is „taking away” something) because they had made a mistake, just remember how many mistakes we, adults make (at a new job for example) and how frustrating it is, when we don’t get the chance to learn something, because a more experienced co-worker declares „oh, let me do it, you’re not doing it right…”. Do you know that frustrating feeling? Suddenly you feel worse and useless. It’s similar with a child, which is learning for the first time how to do things, which to us, grown-ups, seem absolutely basic and simple.
read the rest at http://www.kidfreak.com/2012/05/preschoolers-and-self-control.html