5 answers

Teaching Your Child to Read Body Language

Hi moms!

My mother saw one of our local area doctors (possibly from Rush Presbyterian?) on tv talking about how important it is to teach your children to read body language. He says that children who can't pick up on these non-verbal clues are more likely to be teased and picked on. He mentioned that there are 5 things you can do to help your child but only had time to explain one (playing a game with your child whenever you're out - asking "what do you think that person is feeling?" or "does that lady look happy or angry?"). I don't know what the other steps are, however, and my mother can't remember the doctor's name. Did any of you see this or hear of this? Are there any books out there on the subject? What about bullyinh in general?

Thank you!

What can I do next?

More Answers

I'm not sure the doctor to which you refer but there is a sort of therapy called Relationship Development Intervention, www.RDIconnect.com which addresses these issues.

Have you tried to google the program he was on? Try that, they probably have a list for the week of who was on and the topics they talked about.

here are some thoughts/ideas to help with teaching body language/emotions:
- flip flop faces (game) http://www.discoverytoyslink.com/esuite/control/product?P...
- print off pictures and talk about them (http://www.fotosearch.com/photos-images/kids-body-languag...) or clip pictures from magazines – How does this person feel? Why do you think they feel that way?
- http://do2learn.com/games/facialexpressions/index.htm – free computer program that you can change the expression on the face
- http://do2learn.com/games/feelingsgame/index.htm - free computer program to identify emotions
- role play
- when reading books talk about how the characters in the book feel

hope that helps :)

What ages are your children? Teaching about your own and others feelings is very good to do and there are so many good children's books out there. I usually pull up Amazon lists when entering the topic I want and then go to my library's website to order and read for free. There are so many important topics for children that it is hard to fit them all in....so remembering that a child won't remember anyhow unless they have had experiences to increase interest.

Don't know about the steps but I think there are many things you can do with your kids to teach them about body language.

Play a game of 'Faces' and make a face and have them guess how you are feeling. Do this out in public as well (discretely or people may become weirded out).

Ask your child to tell you how they are feeling about a certain thing - does this make you happy/sad/etc. Why do you feel this way?

You can also do this game without using faces but instead hands/arms/legs.

Use specific instances "You took the ball from me and look over and see me looking like this" mad face or frowning, arms crossed. Ask "How do you think I am feeling? Why do you think I feel this way? What should you do about it?"

Nonverbal communication is something she'll learn about in HS - at least around here they have to pass Communications as a sophomore and they talk a lot about non-verbal vs verbal communication.


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