Helping Children Express Their Emotions and Make Good Decisions
Do you ever get that feeling when you're performing when it seems like the audience just isn't with you? You can tell something is off, but you can't quite put your finger on it.
Maybe the kids are too loud, or they're not paying attention. Worse yet, maybe they're even laughing at your jokes in the wrong places.
If this has happened to you before, don't worry: you're not alone. Many kids entertainers find that understanding emotions is key to having a successful show.
As entertainers, we often have the opportunity to see a range of emotions on children's faces. Whether it's amazement during a trick or glee when they've figured something out, it's always gratifying to see their expressions.
But what about when they're feeling sad, scared, or angry? How can we help them express those feelings? In this blog post, we'll explore how different types of weather can be used as metaphors to help children express their emotions.
Children’s emotions and kids' entertainers go together
Do you remember being a child and having intense emotions?
What did you do with those feelings?
Did you have someone to talk to who could help you understand and express them in a healthy way?
Unfortunately, not all children have that support. This can lead to them feeling overwhelmed by their emotions and might result in their making bad decisions.
Luckily, entertainers and magicians can help!
Have you ever thought about your emotions as if they were weather?
We all know that weather can influence our moods, but we can also use weather as an image to express how we're feeling emotionally. Each weather condition can be associated with a different emotion.
You can incorporate this in teaching kids to be more vocal and how to properly react to certain situations. By incorporating weather into their emotions, you can help kids understand and cope with their feelings in a fun and relatable way during your performance.
You can prepare a set of pictures or a PowerPoint presentation with images or videos of different weather conditions. Create an activity where they can brainstorm how a particular emotion can be related to certain weather.
They will find this educational and fun at the same time!
Here are 6 different weather metaphors that you can use as reference in educating the kids about expressing their emotions.
1. Anger is a storm.
Help them to understand that their anger is like a thunderstorm.
When they are feeling angry, you can tell them that it can feel like a storm is brewing inside of them. Thunderclouds fill the sky, and everything feels dark and scary.
It's important to remember that anger is just a feeling, and it will pass. They can also express their anger in a healthy way so they will not rage out of control.
They can start by taking deep breaths to calm themselves down and they can share with a friend what makes them mad. Remind them that, just as the storm clouds will eventually clear, their anger will too.
2. Sadness is rain or gray clouds.
When they are feeling sad, it can feel like a rain cloud is following them around. Everything seems gray and dreary, and there’s gloom painted on their faces. Tell them that the rain clouds won't stay forever, and their sadness will eventually lift as well.
Help them to understand that their sadness is like heavy rain and it’s helpful to have them talk to their parents or friends and share what they are feeling. Having someone to confide in when feeling down is very important; remind them that crying is okay.
These things can help them feel better and understand why they are feeling that way so it will not bog them down as easily. Mental health is always the top priority; we want them to not feel alone and not keep things to themselves when they are feeling sad.
3. Fear is a tornado.
When they are feeling scared, help them to understand that their fear is like a tornado.
A tornado is swirling around inside of them. They feel like everything is out of control, and they don't know what to do next, and it’s okay.
Managing their fear in a healthy way can help them overcome it more easily. For instance, they can sing a happy song or think of something that made them laugh hard recently.
Remind them that fear is just an emotion, and it will be gone on its own. The tornado will eventually settle down, and they will be just fine.
4. Happiness is a sunny day.
When they are feeling happy, tell them that it is like a bright sun is shining down on them. All of their worries seem to disappear, and they just feel really good. Remind them that it is important to enjoy these happy moments and make the most of them.
You can also tell them that, just like the sun, when their parents see them happy, it automatically brightens up their day. That’s what they feel when they are with their family and friends, the people that they care about.
5. Confusion is fog.
Help them to understand that their confusion is like foggy weather and that it is important to take things slow and not make any hasty decisions.
When they feel confused, explain to them that it can feel like there's thick fog all around them. They might not be able to see anything clearly, and they don't know which way to go, but that confusion is just a feeling, and it will fade on its own. The fog will eventually clear, and they will be able to see things more clearly.
It is also best to ask the grown-ups if they are curious or confused about something so they can help them comprehend whatever it is that is blurry in their mind.
6. Excited and Hopeful is Rainbow.
When they feel excited and hopeful, tell them that it's like a rainbow in their heart. They can let the colors of the rainbow shine through their smile and their voice. Encourage them to show everyone their happy light.
Explain to the children that when we're feeling excited and hopeful, it's like we're seeing our own personal rainbow. Remind them that no matter what happens in life, they always have their rainbow to fall back on. This can be a powerful tool for staying positive during tough times.
Helping children weather their emotions builds trust
With a better understanding of their emotions, they will be smarter in dealing with different life situations. Helping them figure it out will make them trust you and they might ask for more activities, making you their first choice for their next event.
You can also ask them these questions that will walk them through the process of understanding their emotions more:
- Has this ever happened to you before?
- Do you know why you act this way?
- Think of the last time you felt this way.
- Where were you?
- What are you doing?
- What did you do physically/how did you act?
If you want to influence the children in a positive way and impart a kind of learning that will be useful to them in the long run, help children make good decisions that they can apply in their everyday lives. Be the kind of entertainer that the kids can trust.
Expressing emotions is a key part of this process, and we can help you do it better through KEA Club.
Our resources are tailored to help you connect with kids in a way that makes them feel heard and understood.
We’re here to support you as you work to improve the lives of children everywhere, one performance at a time. Click the button below and subscribe to KEA Club today!