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Q and A: Why emotional quotient matters for children

Sunday, 29 June 2014 - 5:32am IST | Place: Pune | Agency: dna

Today's children inspite of being smarter as seen on their higher intelligence quotient (IQ) levels, are not so smart about feelings (their own and others). They are showing disturbing trends of increased anger proneness, loneliness, aggression and impulsive behavior in them.
  • Sandeep Kelkar a leading pediatrician dna Correspondent dna

A passionate advocate of emotional quotient (EQ) and a leading pediatrician, Sandeep Kelkar, has a decade long expertise in the field of EQ. He is a certified and trained expert in emotional intelligence from six-seconds (US) and author of a book 'Parenting with Emotional Intelligence'. He speaks to Rajesh Rao on how having just a high IQ does help children in dealing with real life issues, challenges and stress and why EQ is also important.

Q: Why emotional intelligence in children is important?
In this hectic modernized world children need emotional intelligence skills like emotinal literacy, emotional self awareness, emotional management skills, intrinsic motivation, empathy and impulse control skills to deal with life challenges more effectively. Research has proven that children with higher EQ are more responsible, less lonely, are happy, healthy and have much better academic performance. The modern neuroscience now accepts that emotion and cognition work together and are complementary parts of a healthy person.

Q: Why are we neglecting EQ and can it be developed in children?
Children's EQ can be developed and parents as well as teachers have a major role in teaching children these basic emotional and social skills. Too often we give importance to child's cognitive capabilities (IQ) leaving their emotional competency development to destiny. Even our present education system favors improvement of child's cognitive and physical capabilities, leaving behind emotional domain of child's life. Emotional competency education is the 'missing piece' in our education system.

Q: How does emotional training as part of education can help children?
Emotional intelligence or EQ of child can be nurtured by various scientifically proven methods in homes and schools. Emotional competent children are found to tolerate frustration better and are less violence prone. They are more optimistic, assertive, focused, responsible, popular and outgoing. They are less lonely, impulsive and have greater academic achievement.

Q: Why it has become important for parents to know about emotional intelligence?
In today's time children are faced with such incredible emotional challenges that they can only prosper with carefully honed emotional skills. They need to be equipped with tools to grow strong and learn to reach their full human potential despite the negativity that surrounds them. Parents have to know about the concept of emotional intelligence and how they can nurture childs EQ skills at family level. They have to know what is EQ and why it matters. They should also master emotionally intelligent parenting skills so as to enhance EQ of their children.

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