Remember when your baby wouldn't sleep through the night and you got the advice to establish a nighttime routine, reading books?
Now that your baby is a toddler or a preschooler and you're facing big tantrums - the advice rings true again... just with a different flavor.
Nighttime read-aloud is a wonderful time to connect with your child and to gently teach him/her about their big emotions, why they happen and what to do next time they feel very upset.
Nighttime is also a great time to get them to verbalize how they feel and to "digest" how their day went and what we are learning.
It is also a great moment to express your own feelings to your little one: did you lose control over your own emotions and ended up yelling or punishing? How about if you gently apologize? Apologizing won't diminish your authority, rather will humanize you and help you get closer to your children. It is also a great way of teaching how and why we apologize to others, by modeling the behavior we want to see in them.
Books to read to your child to teach them to cope with tantrums
If you are hoping to get started with a productive night time routine to reduce tantrums, you'll find our favorite book inside the Tantrum Fix box. In addition, here are some other wonderful options you can find at your local library or Amazon:
- Jilly's Terrible Temper Tantrums: And How She Outgrew Them, by Martha Heineman Pieper.
- Listening to My Body: A guide to helping kids understand the connection between their sensations (what the heck are those?) and feelings so that they can get better at figuring out what they need, by Gabi Garcia.
- Cool Down and Work Through Anger (Learning to Get Along®), by Cheri J. Meiners M.Ed.
- Words Are Not for Hurting (Ages 4-7) (Best Behavior Series) by Elizabeth Verdick
In conclusion, a nighttime routine is generally a great idea to not only help induce a good night of sleep on your little ones, but it is also the perfect moment to teach complicated concepts, like why tantrums happen and how to overcome them.
You got this!