Tips from Tuesday’s Child
by Dr. Michelle Sobon
Staff Psychologist, Tuesday’s Child
Friendship Club Facilitator
The holidays can bring more family time, board games, gift exchanges, and a change in schedule and pace. For some families these events can bring about sore losers, arguments over who’s playing with whose toy, refusals to compromise, and what feels like huge reactions to small problems. These are issues we see often around Tuesday’s Child and in our Friendship Club. Some of what we work on and tips you can try include:
- Praise kids for the moments when they are flexible. Even when it seems like they should roll with the punches, praising small moments of flexibility highlight the importance of this skill for your child.
- Plan ahead of family arriving, with your child, about which toys they want to share and which toys they want to put away for safe keeping. Learning how to share with their most precious toy is doubly difficult and better practiced with lower stakes toys.
- Practice naming feelings such as disappointed, frustrated, and overwhelmed.
- Compromise means everyone gets some of what they want and no one gets all of what they want. You can talk about this definition with your family and role play examples. Then when conflict arises, name it a “compromise moment” and talk through what each person will and will not get.
Friendship Club offers children ages 6-8 and their families a framework and language for talking about their child’s social challenges. The Superflex Team of Unthinkables tries to derail your child from being flexible, cooperative, and able to have fun with everyone. Destroyer Of Fun might try to get her to tease her cousins after winning a round of Connect 4! Glassman might sneak in and attempt to make him to have a total meltdown over receiving the “wrong” Fortnite hoodie from Aunt Melanie. Then Rock Brain might attack and get him to dictate the rules and terms that the family can play Jenga! When these Unthinkables show up, family time and friendships can be challenging. Friendship Club helps kids identify these behaviors as they arise and practice strategies to fight back and defeat the Unthinkable.