How Emotions Develop During the Preschool Age
Your children’s brains continue to develop after birth. Day by day, they develop new psychomotor, cognitive, and emotional abilities to help them survive in the future. Do you ever wonder how your children develop emotions and understanding for others’ emotions? Here’s how emotions develop during the preschool age according to WebMD:
- Intense emotions
When your children reach the age of three, they might begin to make sense of what they are currently feeling. For example, if they find something funny, they’ll laugh about it. It will take time for them to move on from laughing at a funny joke or object. If something causes them to cry, they will cry hard and might even throw a fit. At this developmental period, your children may seem to act according to how they feel. They still don’t have the ability to control their impulses yet. Your children might resolve conflicts through inappropriate ways such as hitting, biting, shoving, or pushing others.
- No room for delayed gratification
A famous psychological experiment called the “Standford marshmallow experiment” showed how children respond to rewards, especially when those rewards were put on hold for a few minutes and were not given to them immediately. During the preschool age, children tend to have no room for delayed gratification. When they want something, they will always want it immediately.
Most four-year-old children form empathy as they start to understand that others have feelings, too. They can relate when a friend or a family member appears to be in pain or appears to be happy. They might respond to others by giving warm hugs, patting others’ backs, or crying along with others.
As a parent, you should be the one who will guide your children in what is appropriate and what is not. It’s important for you to help them manage their emotions while they are young. At this age, you can help your children develop values and principles that will help form their personality and identity.
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