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Responding to emotions

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Talking about feelings with your child in fun ways helps them become more aware and accepting of emotions in themselves and others. These Meaningful Moments help you support your child to successfully manage their feelings and stay calm when feeling upset.

Gab and Go
12-OnTheGo
For ages 0 to 1
When you’re getting ready to go out, talk about what you’re doing and how your child might be feeling. Maybe you could say, "We’re getting ready to go to the shops. You’re wriggling and have a smile on your face. You seem excited. Let’s go and see what we find there." How do they respond? Follow their lead!
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Meal Plan
10-MealTime
For ages 0 to 1
When feeding your baby, talk about what they’re doing and why you think they’re doing it. "You’re drinking your milk because you’re so hungry!" Talk about what will happen next. "After your tummy is full of milk, you’ll be sleepy and it will be time for your nap."
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Mirror Me
1-AnytimeAnywhere
For ages 0 to 2
Children feel many different emotions every day, just like you. Make faces that mirror how your child seems to be feeling. Talk to them about why you’re making those faces. "You’re smiling and seem happy, and I am smiling and happy too."
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Calm Down Kit
13-Playtime
For ages 2.5 to 5
Use an empty shoebox or other container to make a "Calm Down Kit" with your child. Have your child put special items inside that help them feel secure and relaxed. When they are feeling upset, remind them to use their kit. They even can decorate the box to make it their own.
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Thankful Tidbits
6-Bedroom
For ages 3 to 5
At bedtime, take turns with your child listing things you’re thankful for. Here’s an easy one to start with, "I’m thankful for you!" Then, help them think of something they’re thankful to have in their life. See how many times you can go back-and-forth.
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Faces and Feelings
2-AtAnAppointment
For ages 3 to 5
Next time you and your child are stuck waiting, point out a face in a magazine, ad, or picture and have them copy it. Ask them what they think the person is feeling. Discuss with them when both of you might have felt this way too.
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Looking for more moments?

The Bright Tomorrows app provides families more than 1000 tips and meaningful moments that are easy to do every day with babies and young children. Once you load the app, tailored moments backed by science, will be provided for you and your family to help your child’s development. The app will recommend special moments tailored for you and each of your children, based on age and interests.

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