Teaching patience activities are not usually one of the main virtues of children. Their difficulty in orienting themselves in time, as well as the scarce development of the frontal lobes, make it difficult for them to delay gratifications. So, it is usual that they want everything immediately. However, that does not mean that we should not teach them to have patience, a value that will be very useful in life.
Teaching patience activities tips
1. Become your model of patience
Children learn a lot by imitation, especially from the closest models: their parents. Therefore, if you want your child to be patient, you must be patient with him. If you lose your nerve every time something does not go according to plan, your child will assume that impatience is a normal response.
2. Start with small doses
If your child is still small, it is difficult to remain silent for an entire hour while conversing with someone. Patience is dosed. So, in the beginning, you may have to start by asking her to be patient for five minutes. As you grow and develop self-control, you can demand more patience.
3. Resorts to reflective listening
For a child, it is difficult to stay in a row for a long time when he would rather be playing. Helping you verbalize what you are feeling will allow you to deal better with the wait. Therefore, listen to it from empathy and validate your feelings. Sometimes children need their parents to pay attention and listen to them to get rid of frustration and regain calm.
4. Use Timers
When your child asks for something, and you respond that you will attend in a minute, you can be generating frustration without realizing it. Young children have no sense of time, so a minute or an hour is not too different for them. One strategy to help them be patient and delay gratification is to use timers. The hourglasses are ideal because they can also have a relaxing effect. Therefore, the next time your child asks for something and you can not attend to it immediately, simply resort to a timer. But make sure you keep your promise when the time limit expires.
5. Teach coping skills
As the child grows, he must learn to deal with waiting with his strategies. Explain that in many cases to achieve something you want, you need to wait and be patient. However, while you wait you can do something you like, such as drawing or reading a story.
6. Involve it in games and activities that require patience
One of the main disadvantages of electronic toys is that they accustom children to instant gratification. To teach your child to be patient you need to involve him in projects and activities that require time, such as making pottery, planting plants or turn-based games, in which he is obliged to wait. If your child has difficulty waiting for his turn to rocking on the swing, for example, instead of avoiding the park you should visit him more often to reinforce the need to be polite and patient.
7. Power self-control
For a child, having patience is reduced to learning that he has to control his emotions and actions, especially when they feel anxious, frustrated or tired. Therefore, teaching patience also implies enhancing self-control. Before giving in to a request from your child, it is important that you ask him or her to recover some self-control. Giving in to your tantrums, screaming or crying will not help you develop self-control and be more patient; on the contrary, it will reinforce the idea that if you act with impatience, you can get what you want quickly.
8. Applies intentional delays
In a world where instant gratification is everywhere, sometimes parents have to delay a few things on purpose, with no other reason than to teach the child to be patient and strive to achieve what he wants. For example, if your child wants a puppy or a toy, it is not necessary to satisfy him immediately, he can wait for his birthday or Christmas.