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How can I help my child handle new tasks?

Lynne Kenney
Psychology
Some children are quite resistant to shifts in activity. They become cognitively rigid and have trouble transitioning from one activity to the next. This can result in a tendency to become emotionally overwhelmed and melt down. How can you help your child to experience cognitive flexibility when facing new tasks? Follow the following steps:

1. Prepare your child for the new task. Tell your child the what, when, how and who of the task. Get her used to the whole idea.

2. Engage your child in creating the strategies to achieve and manage the new task. Ask your child what she thinks will help her achieve the task. Develop steps for achievement with your child’s ideas in mind.

3. Review the steps to achieve the new task.

4. Practice the new task with your child.

5. Revise your words and actions based on how your child responds.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.