When kids play with other kids, some friendly play dates may lead to conflict. Parents wonder how to teach their kids about conflict. Some parents converse with their children in a soft voice while other parents use a stern tone to curb their children’s attitude.
What is conflict resolution?
By definition, conflict is a challenge to how a person behaves. Children find it hard to resolve their conflict. To them, when some other kid did them wrong, it’s time to stop playing.
Some of the conflicts kids face stem from:
- Determining whose turn is it to play on the swing
- Who gets the toy
- Which food to choose as snacks
These conflicts may seem simple, but to kids, they take a toll from them. They feel different emotions that they haven’t encountered yet.
What are the 5 steps on how to teach conflict resolution for kids?
Kids wonder why their parents tell them to make up with the kids that they took the toy from. They wonder why taking the toy abruptly causes a little panic. Here’s how parents can start teaching their kids how to resolve conflict.
Tell the kids to step away from each other. This way, they get to calm down and think about what happened. Start by having them walk in opposite directions while counting to 20. Some let their kids draw whatever they like. This releases the tension that the kid has and helps them talk better.
#2 Start the conversation
When the kids have cooled off, start conversing with them. It’s important to ask them what’s wrong before scolding them or telling them what should they do. Children feel when their parents intend to scold them. Parents need to converse with their children calmly.
Encourage them to be completely honest about what happened and reassure them that they will have support. Remember to tell them to use “I” whenever they tell their stories.
#3 Give a sincere apology
An apology takes the form of sincere words or letter. Support the children to formulate a good apology. Some find it better to apologize through a letter while others hug it out.
To the parents, teach the kids these elements so they can create a good apology:
- Acknowledge the reason of the conflict. For example, “I got your toy from your locker.”
- Utter the words, “I’m sorry.”
- Sincerely explain the plan to prevent future conflicts. For starters, “I will share my food with you during breaks.”
- Encourage the kids to improve their behavior with other kids.
- Forgive and ask for forgiveness.
On the other hand, some apologies turn out bad, especially if they blame the other person, lie about what happened, or say that what happened was a prank.
#4 Encourage kids to find solutions rather than telling them
Most of the time, children ask their parents how to deal with things. Sometimes, they ask for immediate answers. To teach them about conflict resolution, parents must encourage them to resolve the conflict on their own.
One way to do this is to encourage the kids to listen to their playmates. Next, tell them to repeat what the other kid is saying and to be honest with each other. Remember that some words may be hurtful towards others.
#5 Reassure, forgive, and be grateful
Check on the kids to see if they’re getting along. Kids engage in different activities like playing, coloring, or reading books together. However, there are time when incidents push the children apart. Kids need a break and new playmates to interact with. Reassure kids that forgiving other kids reduces conflict between them. This establishes a good relationship between them early on. It encourages them to be more sociable and adaptable to different social situations.
Kids look up to their parents as their first teachers. They learn various things such as conflict resolution that help them as they grow up. Remember, resolving conflict begins in the home. Choose the right daycare center for you, choose Wee Care Preschool.