Over the past few weeks Mr D has been really struggling with keeping some of those big emotions in check. It’s really hard to stay calm and to understand that something bigger is going on, either emotionally or developmentally and I know that I haven’t handled the challenges well all the time
After chatting to a couple of friends with similar aged children I was convinced that once his emotional outbursts had calmed down a little we would see some big leaps in his development. I was right. Whilst he is still struggling to keep some of his emotions in check, things aren’t quite as explosive as they had been a few weeks ago. It’s difficult to describe the change other than he now seems to have a greater worldly awareness. He understands more about how we interact as part of a bigger picture and is asking ever more difficult questions and is able to logically work out answers for himself.
I put the emotions thing on a bit of a back burner but then fate sort of intervened. We received a package of books from Tiny Owl Publishing and one of them was the lovely When I Coloured in the World. The book takes the reader on a journey of exploration changing the negatives and dark parts of the world into colour. It is the perfect book to help younger readers explore their own thoughts, feeling and emotions through the use of colour.
We read the book together and then set about using sugar paper and chalk pastels to create pictures that used colours that made us feel happy and colours that we felt when we were cross or upset. This was really interesting as they were both able to associate some of their recent negative emotions with the darker colours and red.
Adding in the pastels meant that we could also talk about blending the colours and it was really interesting to watch how their drawing technique changed when they did the happy and the sad pictures. When doing the happy pictures they used a variety of colours and were fairly soft in their application of the pastels but when it came to the sad picture they were both much more forceful and created a mass of black and grey.
They spent a while doing this and it was a great way to help try and tease out some of the feelings and emotions that they’ve been experiencing recently. This is something I plan to revisit in different ways in the coming months.
The book, When I Coloured in the World, is the perfect book to help little ones understand the differences in the world (and if your children are like mine, their own position of privilege) and to help them explore their big emotions in a really accessible and manageable way.