I get questions like these all the time, “Why is my child doing _____?” Why is my child angry all the time? Why is my child not turning in their homework? Why is my child having tantrums in target? Why does my child lie?” The list goes on and on.
The answer to this question is more than just their behavior. It’s beyond the surface. The way I like to think about it is: a child’s behavior is their way of communicating things such as “help me,” or “I feel out of control,” or “I am overwhelmed,” or “it’s too loud in here.” They don’t yet have the verbal communication skills to tell you why they are doing what they are doing and what they need.
This is the beauty behind play therapy- allowing children to communicate through play and toys- a language they know very well. For play therapy to be most helpful, it’s imperative for parents to have the tools they need to carry this out into their world outside of the playroom.
This blog series on “Steps to Better Understand your Child” will do just that: help parents and caregivers to better understand their child’s world and to discover the answer to the question “why is my child doing____?” Throughout this series, we will be answering the following questions together:
- WHO? Looking at who children are from a biological and developmental perspective
- WHY? Taking a look into why children do what they do and the potential meaning behind their behavior.
- WHAT? Learning practical skills to improve understanding and communication
- HOW? Discovering the best way to carry out these skills in the way that YOUR child needs them
- WHEN? Understanding the appropriate times to implement these skills
By the end of this series, my hope is that you will start to see your child’s world through their lens, not just your own.
Written by: Amberly Ellis