What kind of face is this?

For ages 0 – 8 years

Children learn by copying what they see. In this activity your child can show what they feel and see what that looks like. It will help them learn about feelings and how to express them. They can also learn  to recognise feelings in others, which can help them to get along with other people.

 What do I need?

  • Just yourselves!
  • Mirror (optional)

 How do I do it?

  1. Sit facing your child.
  2. Ask them to show you their ‘happy face’.
  3. Copy the same face back to them and ask: “Is that how your happy face feels?”
  4. Do the same thing with other emotions: ask them to be angry, scared, frustrated, sad, surprised, excited.
  5. Ask some questions:
    “Show me what it feels like when you’re eating a delicious apple.”
    “What does your face look like when you’re excited to go outside and play?”
     “What does it look like when you hurt yourself?”
  6. Show them how your face looks when you experience different emotions.
  7. Next show them their expressions in a mirror – if you are using one.

With babies, you can smile at them and see them return your smile, or open your mouth into a surprised face and watch them mirror your expression.  

No-one knows your child better than you.  So, choose and/or adapt ideas here to best suit you and your child. Remember it’s the talking and time spent together that matters most.

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