One of the biggest problems I see as kids age is the ability to communicate feelings. This translates into bad behavior. The child stays with the same patterns of communication, which usually means arguing, crying, or tantrums. Not a pretty thing as toddlers age into bigger kids. If you think it's embarrassing to deal with tantrums now, just wait until your eight year old throws enough crying fits at school that you get called into a meeting to put a "behavior plan" in place. Pretty darn awful.
Click here for a Free Printable Toddler Feelings Chart.
Address this now!! Get kids identifying and labeling their feelings. Talk about what went wrong and how you can change it. Of course you have to do this in toddler-speak, but the little dudes and dudettes are a lot smarter than you think. They just need the vocabulary and guidance to organize all these feelings and learn how to deal with them appropriately. Use our emotion chart to start. If you need, pick one emotion a day and introduce them to the cooresponding face. Practice acting out that emotion (or have a favorite stuffed animal act it out instead!) and review it the next day, adding another emotion. It won't be long before your child has a pretty cool grasp of different emotions and can start to identify and talk to you about them as they occur in daily life. This puts you and your child well on the way to healthy, productive, and positive communication patterns!