Nurture with Words Regulating children's emotions
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Regulating kid’s emotions through drawing

Did you know that drawing can help regulate your child’s emotions? It’s something we often see in young children, especially in the pre-school and starting school ages, where kid’s find it hard to show what they’re feeling, and alternatively, how to deal with it. It can be hard to find different ways to help them and let them grow, and sometimes even frustrating. As a parent, you want to try and find the best way to help – but how? Recently I came across this article, How children use drawing to regulate their emotions, by Jennifer E. Drake & Ellen Winner (you can read it here) Which is an interesting read. They looked at a couple of different ways that drawing functions for children, either ‘venting’ (the child expressing negative feelings) or ‘distracting’ (where the child expresses something unrelated to negative feeling) and compared the two – and both studies showed interesting results – that drawing used to express emotions is (basically) best done with distraction, not venting and the image has to be freely constructed, simply copying won’t have the same effect. What I’ve taken away from reading this great article is that while drawing is an excellent resource to calm or help your child calm and regulate themselves, it has to be something they want to do, and should be whatever they want to draw. Which really, is an excellent idea – at any time. Off to draw now!