Working through emotions is already challenging for adults, yet we expect kids to just know automatically how to handle big emotions, even when they themselves are quite small.
I’ve always loved this quote from L. R. Knost, “When little people are overwhelmed by big emotions it’s our job to share our calm, not join their chaos”.
Although I love this bit of advice, and I think it’s amazing advice for working through a meltdown, I think it’s also incomplete.
One of the things I want to teach my kids is how to deal with big emotions as they come up, not just ignore them. Even though I know the importance of teaching them to manage their emotions in a healthy way, that doesn’t make it any easier!
Preschoolers are KNOWN for their huge mood swings and they so frequently experience emotions on a scale that is completely uncontrollable, for both positive and negative emotions.
We use phrases like “having a meltdown” or “bouncing off the walls with excitement” to describe the way they behave, but the more difficult thing to hone in on, is how to talk to them about this, and equip them with tools to self regulate as much as they can.
Trust me, I’ve tried to have a conversation about feelings with BOTH of my kids (at different times) and it was like talking to a wall. A very wiggly wall that kept changing the subject.
It’s no easy task, which is why I was so excited to find out about The Moodsters! We currently have the Moodster Meter and the Snorf talking plush. Each came with a storybook that helps kids learn and understand their emotions. I’ve been looking at them and I really love all The Moodsters products for my kids. Each one, helps the kids explore a different aspect of how they are feeling or a different emotion.
Snorf is a sad little Moodster and helps kids understand what it means to feel sad AND what you can do about it when you do feel sad. Snorf came with a fun little activity book, that helped kids work through different emotions in a variety of ways.
Both kids loved looking at the book and figuring out where the stickers went and how to work through the problems. I was amazed at how long we were able to spend talking about feelings!
When packaged up in a fun and exciting way like The Moodsters the kids actually want to discuss it.
My son was immediately draw to the Moodster Meter. It’s a good way of helping your child to think about and communicate what he/she is feeling. They can slide the lever on the meter to what they are feeling and even push the meter button to hear a little bit about that emotion.
Both kids spent a fair amount of time playing with the meter and unbeknownst to them, learning about what the various emotions mean! Anger, sadness, happiness, fear and love are all covered on the meter and in the books!
With the Moodster Meter we also got the book Meet the Moodsters. It shows how the Moodsters collect clues to figure out how a person is feeling and then help them deal with it. I loved that the book went at a slow pace, discecting each piece of the emotional puzzle, but also kept the storyline fun and exciting. Each page was colorful and fun, the kids were really impressed with the book, and I was too!
It’s no surprise that these toys are so effective both in teaching kids about their emotions and helping them work through the big emotions in the moment! They were created by Denise Daniels, she is a Peabody award-winning broadcast journalist, child development and parenting expert AND author who focuses especially in the social and emotional development of kids. If any one knows how to effectively teach kids about these things, it’s Denise Daniels and her line of Moodsters toys and books are a great example of her expertise.
There are 5 little Moodsters in the stories and they each specialize in a different emotion while working together as detectives to solve mood-mysteries! It’s a fun and engaging concept for the kids and simplifies something that’s usually beyond their comprehension.
You even have a chance to win your own Moodster product for your child. Simply visit ToysRus.com or The Moodsters Website to learn more about our Moodster friends and leave me a comment telling me which one you think would resonate with your child most, and why! Be sure to also like The Moodsters Facebook Page to hear more about the toys and how to use them with your kids!