Developing self-regulation skills in early years is a strong predictor of the children’s later life successes

The capacity for conscious and voluntary self-regulation is central to our understanding of what it is to be human. It underlies our assumptions about choice, decision making and planning so that we can manage our behaviour and reactions in a healthy manner. We often have little control over when we experience emotions and what they are, but we do have some say in how long an emotion will last and how we react to a given emotion. In fact, self-regulation holds a pivotal place in the holistic development of a child and, thus, is significant in developing their social-emotional competencies.

Self-regulation is an internal mechanism that helps children to engage in behaviour that is mindful, deliberate, and considerate. Through effective self-regulation children learn to develop the ability to control their impulses and to stop behaving or reacting negatively when they are frustrated, excited, upset, angry, or experiencing any other type of strong emotion. This in turn fosters children’s cognitive control which helps them regulate their automated responses by encouraging them to think before acting, thus, helping them to learn under what conditions a particular action is deemed appropriate.

Research has shown that children who are more adept at self-regulation are better able to learn, typically behave well, have positive relationships with others, and become more independent. It gives them the confidence they need to handle intense emotions successfully and react appropriately throughout their lives, not just in childhood.

At Happy Hearts, we help children to navigate situations that require behavioural, emotional, and social regulations through appropriate feedback, problem solving, roleplay and relaxation techniques to help them adapt their behaviour and gain the skills necessary to handle challenges independently. By tailoring our approach to each child, we are able to focus on their unique needs and help them develop accordingly.