Preschool Martial Arts Classes for 3-year-olds and 4-year-olds may seem like a bit of an early start… But when it comes to regulating temper tantrums, no time is too early! We know they can be stressful! Read on for some amazing ways that our preschool classes help create a tantrum-free household.
Temper Tantrums in Preschool Kids
Preschool kids are emotional beings. They don’t rationally understand consequences. During a temper tantrum, all they can think about is that they’re upset, and that they definitely want you to know about it.
We can’t fault them for throwing tantrums, because their logic systems are still developing. What we CAN do is help teach them emotional regulation, listening, self control, focusing, and refocusing. And these skills apply to so much more than just tantrums!
What is a Temper Tantrum?
A temper tantrum works like this: Your child becomes upset by something. They feel a very strong negative emotion- most often, frustration. This frustration causes them to physically express their emotions through crying, whining, screaming… It can even manifest itself in aggressive behavior like hitting or throwing.
Every child has thrown a temper tantrum before, so you’re not alone! Plenty of parents enroll their children in our preschool classes because they’ve heard about how martial arts can help with these behavioral issues in young children.
Getting Your Child Ready for School
In a temper tantrum your child is acting based on pure emotions. They’re fueled by thoughts of how unfair something is, and their frustration just keeps building.
What we do is teach them how to focus, listen to instructions, and then redirect their focus to something different that is far away from the source of their tantrum. This will help make life more peaceful for you and everyone in your family!
How Preschool Martial Arts Classes Can Help
This is why martial arts for young kids in preschool is so amazing. We see a REMARKABLE difference in kids who start at ages 3 and 4 and kids who start at ages 6 and 7. Kids who start martial arts classes at ages 3 and 4 get to learn these emotional and behavioral skills much quicker than 6 and 7 year olds.
Then, as they progress through the ranks, they learn more in their upper level classes because they’ve already gotten their emotions regulated. They’ve already learned how to control their behavior, and the material sticks better because they’re focusing better. Then, when they enter school, they have an incredible advantage because, well… just read that previous paragraph!
It all applies to school as well. That’s why martial arts is way more than just punches and kicks. It’s a tool we use to shape our students to become the absolute best versions of themselves, and it shows.
Focusing and Refocusing in Class
So with all that in mind, here’s how we run our preschool martial arts classes: Step one is listening. We make listening FUN in our classes. How? Our instructors are super stealthy and love to sneak listening skills, discipline skills and focus improvement into every lesson through fun and games. Just call them life skill ninjas.
Martial arts classes at the preschool level are less about the self defense moves (which they’ll learn as they progress) and more about the foundation of behavioral skills. This includes self control, which is the second step. It’s about being able to control their bodies so that they can sit still without fidgeting. We teach self control the same way- through fun games and activities and positive reinforcement.
That’s totally key with tantrums- positive reinforcement. Kids in preschool often throw temper tantrums because they don’t feel like they’re being listened to. They want your attention. They’ll be less inclined to resort to negative attention strategies like a temper tantrum when we positively reinforce their good behavior skills, like listening.
Reinforcing and praising our kids when they listen is really critical. Everybody gets busy, we know that… But we really like to have parents sit in and watch class, so that they can keep up the positive reinforcement strategies at home. Then when you practice it at home you can really watch your child transform!