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Emotions are an interesting thing, am I right? It’s no secret that kids are full of emotions and when they are young, they don’t know how to handle them. As they grow, they learn how to express themselves, their vocabulary grows exponentially, and soon you have miniature adults that seem to have a full range of emotions. Think about it: when was the last time your child told you what they were feeling as opposed to just acting a certain way? It comes with time. Most kids act impulsively with their emotions because they don’t know how to control them. They don’t call it the “terrible twos” for no reason, am I right?
Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear, and Disgust are emotions that I am well aware of, as well as the new characters from Disney’s new movie, Inside Out. They are also the 5 emotions that my kids seem to have totally nailed. After I took the kids to see the movie on Tuesday (it was SO cute!) it spurred all sorts of conversations about emotions. They talked about what made them angry or scared, and getting giggles talking about what makes them happy.
My kids are pretty receptive to my emotions. If I am crying, they want to know why I am sad. If I am laughing, they want to know what I think is funny. They have started role-playing with the plush toys and their conversations are hilarious. For example:
Brayden: “Kenley, it makes me ANGRY when you take my Legos without asking me.”
Kenley: “Well, it makes me feel disgusting when I can’t play with your toys, too.”
Digust, disgusting, tomAto, tomaHto.
I decided to make an Emotions Basket to further explore my kid’s reactions to emotions. Here’s what we did:
I purchased this adorable basket at WalMart, plus some scrapbook paper and used markers we already had.
I had the kids help me pick the color that most resembled four of the five Inside Out characters: Anger, Joy, Sadness, and Fear. Brayden wrote on a couple of them, and I wrote on the others. Underneath, I had them tell me things that made them feel each of those emotions. I also made a blank circle on each paper so they could draw what they thought those emotions looked like in facial expressions.
It was so cute to see them drawing on their faces and then asking each other “does THIS face look sad? What about this face?” They were having fun depicting all of the emotions from the movie. Brayden also pointed out that it makes him angry when I laugh at him when he falls off his bike. I can’t recall this happening. Out of the mouths of babes, I tell ya.
When we were done, we were left with a bright, colorful basket to store our Inside Out plush toys AND things in writing that make us feel different emotions. It was a fun activity that the kids both loved, and I liked hearing their answers.
Of course, they each have a favorite. Can you guess?
Check out Inside Out plush toys at select WalMart stores– and if you go see the movie, let me know if you loved it like we did!
How do you encourage your children to vocalize their emotions?