Help Your Child Learn To Manage Anger (Mini-Course)
Yes, you CAN help your child stop tantrumming, shouting and hitting. You CAN help them learn the skills to express their upsets and needs appropriately. You CAN create a more peaceful home! This Self-Paced Parenting Mini-Course gives you:
1. Three audios with transcripts
2. Two fun printables
3. Two worksheets
that guide you through the steps to support your child to learn to manage anger. (Full description at the "Learn More" link.) While this mini-course will be helpful to parents of any age child because it will help them better understand and respond to their child's anger, it is primarily geared for parents of kids ages four through twelve.
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Kids often express their anger in ways that are hurtful or scary to parents, from angry words to slamming doors to hitting. But your child's anger isn't the problem -- all humans feel anger. What children need to learn is how to express their anger in healthy ways that don't hurt people, relationships or property -- and to constructively address the problems that are causing the anger.
Are you ready to create a more peaceful home by teaching your child how to handle anger constructively? This self-paced mini-course will teach you how, step by step.
Listen to the "Helping Your Child with Anger" audio.
This powerful 16 minute audio will teach you the secrets to handling your child's anger. Download the Transcript for this audio to follow along.
Begin an ongoing discussion with your child about anger.
To get started, please download this pdf:
How to begin talking about anger with your child Worksheet.
Find a time when you and your child are relaxed and feeling connected. In a series of conversations, ask your child questions like the ones on the worksheet.
You'll learn a lot from these conversations, both about your child and about yourself. Your goal is to start creating a family understanding about anger, which will both remove the shame of feeling anger and motivate everyone in the family to handle that feeling more constructively.
TIP: Never begin a conversation about anger when your child is angry. When people are angry, they are in “fight or flight” – a state of emergency. They can’t learn or problem-solve. When a child is angry, your priority is to acknowledge what they’re upset about and restore a feeling of emotional and physical safety so that they can calm down.
Milestones and Action Items
The Anger Milestones and Action Steps Worksheet will help you target where to focus during our Spotlight on Helping Your Child Learn to Manage Anger.
- What’s a Milestone? A marker that tells you where you are on a journey.
- What’s an Action Item? A step you take that moves you toward the next Milestone.
Please start by downloading the Milestones and Action Items Worksheet and reading through all descriptions, to evaluate where you and your child are on the journey to manage your anger constructively. Which fits you both best at this point in time? No shame, no blame – wherever you find yourself is the right place to begin!
Once you decide what Milestone you’re at right now, read the Action Items for that Milestone. Those are the tasks that will help you move to the next Milestone along your Success Path.
What if you can’t decide what Milestone is right for you? No worries. Your goal is to master each level, so you can gradually work your way through the Action items for all the Milestones. There’s no rush. Every one of these Action items takes you toward the family life you want!
My Secret Weapons for Calming Down Printable
Find a time when you and your child are relaxed and feeling connected. Continue your ongoing conversations about anger by brainstorming effective ways to calm down.
To guide your discussion, use this Worksheet: Talking with your child about their Secret Weapons for Calming Down.
Show your child this printable: Secret Weapons for Calming Down and work together to complete it. Remember, your child needs to feel that YOU are working to manage your anger too. If they feel shamed by this discussion, it will make it harder for them to manage anger constructively. All of us are working on this hard thing!
Deconstructing Anger Audio
Listen to the "Deconstructing Anger" audio. You'll find the transcript below the audio.
This audio will teach you how anger works and what it looks like to manage anger in a healthy way -- for both adults and children.
Kids Guide to Managing Anger Printable
Continue the conversation about anger by sharing this printable with your child: The Kids' Guide to Managing Anger.
Let your child read this printable to you. (If your child is too young to read, you can read the printable to them, and ask them questions about it.) As they read, ask them the listed questions to start a discussion.
Put the printable on your refrigerator at your child's level. Model using it when you get annoyed, just as you do the Secret Weapons for Calming Down printable.
When neither of you is angry, make a game of trying out the different ideas with your child to practice them.
Listening To Anger Audio
The 8 minute "Listening To Anger" audio is designed to help children (and adults) calm down when they're upset. Invite your child to listen to it WITH you, and to tell you what they think about it. Then ask them: "Do you think this would help when you're angry? Would you like for us to set this audio up now so you easily access it when you're angry?"
Accepting emotions like this is the beginning of resilience. Gradually, your child will internalize the ability to weather disappointment, and learn that he can't always get what he wants, but he has something better -- someone who loves and accepts all of him, including the yucky parts like disappointment and anger. He'll have learned that emotions aren't dangerous -- they can be tolerated without acting on them, and they pass. Gradually, he'll learn to verbalize his feelings and needs without attacking the other person -- even when he's furious.
You'll have taught him how to manage his emotions. And you'll have strengthened, rather than eroded, your bond with him. All by taking a deep breath and staying compassionate in the face of rage.
Sounds saintly, I know, and you won't always be able to pull it off. But every time you do, you'll be helping your child grow the neural pathways for a more emotionally intelligent brain. And you'll be gifting yourself a lot less drama -- and a lot more love.