3 Effective Strategies to Help Children Manage Anger and Aggression

June 01, 2017

3 Effective Strategies to Help Children Manage Anger and Aggression

Anger is a complex emotion, especially for children who are just learning how to deal with it. As such, it's incredibly important for parents, teachers, and counselors alike to understand how best to help children manage their anger and aggression. Below are three effective strategies to help caregivers and counselors alike create a better understanding of anger for children.

Validate Good Deeds
According to Psy-Ed.com's Dr. Tali Shenfield, children must fully understand what they are doing right, not just what they're doing wrong. In other words, it's just as important to praise a child when they've done something good as it is to reprimand them when they've done something wrong.

"The human mind is wired to require validation; providing that validation for positive behaviors ... is a highly effective means of ensuring a child seeks out attention in the right ways," Shenfield writes.

Creating an environment in which a child knows when they've done right or wrong is essential in helping them understand that positive attention is associated with positive behaviors.

Label Feelings
Emotions posters are highly useful tools in both therapeutic and classroom settings. In fact, language of emotions posters can even be utilized by parents at home. In times of stress, anger, or anxiety, children can use the poster and point to words or pictures that help them visualize and verbalize what they're feeling. Once they've pointed out an emotion, they can talk about what made them angry and how to handle that emotion in the future.

School Training Solutions also recommends creating thermometer posters or homemade feelings posters as great therapy tools for children.

Lead by Example
This is an especially important tip for parents. According to Shenfield, "children learn primarily by observing the adults around them." That means parents! On average, children develop anxiety disorders and other emotional difficulties around age six. The more they observe parental figures handling situations a certain way, the more they will mimic those behaviors.

In order to help children learn effective ways to manage their emotions, it's important that parents and other caregivers offer good examples.

These are just a few of many excellent strategies to help children manage anger. For more information, don't hesitate to visit Child's Work.