At Wonder Bunch, we are always on the lookout for ways to educate and excite kids about the wonderful world all around them! As Earth Day approaches, we wanted to share a few fun ideas...
It’s common and completely normal for very little children to have very big fears. Loud noises, new faces, and strange places are sure to have children clutching for their parents. But when do those normal nerves become anxiety? Wonder Bunch Media wanted to find a way to help look out for those little hearts, and so we did some digging.
According to a study done by the CDC, about 1.8 million children under the age of 18 have some form of anxiety disorder. You can check out this page for more on the study, what the causes may be, and when to seek professional help.
When you’ve done everything you can to give your child a happy and rewarding life, it can be frustrating to find that there may not be an environmental cause for your child’s anxiety. It’s possible they are simply wired differently. The most important thing to remember is that anxiety isn’t anyone’s “fault,” and doesn’t reflect on your work as a parent, or your child’s resilience or capability. But how you react and respond to your child’s anxiety will have a lasting impact, and has the capacity to teach your child coping mechanisms to empower them to build a more positive future!
One early intervention when your child is getting wrapped around that anxiety axle is HALT. Help your child assess if they are Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired. Sometimes a snack, a nap, a talk, or a walk with a friend can short circuit that out-of-control feeling before it has a chance to take over. When you first notice the trigger, remember to HALT before their emotions, and in turn yours, get out of control.
Developed by an 11-year-old from Australia and her two brothers, Positive Penguins puts the power of perspective in your child’s hands. This app doesn’t try to convince your child that they aren’t experiencing negative emotions. Instead, it empowers them to name exactly how they’re feeling and to explore the facts behind the feelings. Once they understand what triggered their negative emotion, the app then equips them to take bold action to create a better day for themselves.
Realistically, you can’t keep your children from experiencing bad days, but you can help them build a sense of optimism that can help them overcome them!
There’s never a bad time to stop, breathe, and think, and this app has an answer for your child any time of the day. Use this tool before school to improve attention, during homework to aid in focus, and before bed to help relax and let go of the day.
Smiling Mind is the perfect low-impact workout for your child’s mind! Free guided meditations empower your child to make mindful choices about how the day can go from here, and help them make decisions from a calmer, more informed place. Smiling Mind was developed by psychologists and educators to cater to the specific needs of children in just ten minutes a day. It does this in a way that doesn’t simply placate a bad day, but strengthens children’s coping mechanisms to help keep the bad days from taking over.
“Let it Go” is more than an earworm of a hit song, it’s an excellent mantra for anyone who struggles with moving past a hard moment. Dandelion helps children regulate their breathing, giving them the power to oxygenate their brain and make better decisions. This simple breathing exercise can encourage a sense of calm and control, which helps end anxiety reactions sooner.
A de-escalation tool that can help stop anxiety from turning into anger. This is a perfect companion to other methods and therapies you may have in place for your older children. The app comes equipped with a stress assessment (this does not take the place of a professional assessment) daily reminders to practice, two exercises a day, a notepad for keeping track of intrusive thoughts or questions that arise during daily activities, and a progress report to help keep your child moving forward in a positive and healthy way.
Be sure that you are taking the time to care for your own emotional well-being while you’re looking for answers for your children. Being a strong and compassionate parent 24 hours a day can be exhausting, especially if your child is facing real struggles. Take the time to recover every day, and know that there are experts and educators out there right now searching for more answers to make you and your child’s life as joyful and rewarding as possible! Thanks for letting Wonder Bunch do just a little of the legwork for your family!