Dear Grandparenting: Everything is changing so crazy fast in my family. My daughter Lindsey cut the cord with her no-good husband and moved to Illinois with my grandson Alex.
They are starting over again. Lindsey has a new job and Alex started up in a new school. I worry about them, Alex especially. He turns nine in December and needs to make new friends, learn the ropes and fend for himself, start all over.
Here’s what gets me. Lindsey said Alex is working on building up his “emotional intelligence” to help control his feelings. I don’t understand know how you get smart about your emotions. Is this something I need pay attention to, or is my daughter just too stressed out to make sense? Joyce Baker, Murfreesboro, Tennessee
Dear Joyce: We’ve all heard about the importance of IQ or intelligence quotient, but some experts contend that emotional intelligence skill or EI — an ability to manage and express one’s personal feelings and respect others — is equally if not more important for proper childhood development, and a predictor of future achievement.
EI programs, offshoots of Daniel Goleman’s seminal 1995 book “Emotional Intelligence,” continue to gain traction with educators. Students experience fewer of the wild mood swings that accompany adolescent and teenage years, derailing productive thoughts and actions.
As with any skill, EI can be learned. Schools that adopt social and emotional learning programs report measurable positive results, including character development, violence prevention and anti-bullying, improved discipline and academic success. Now what grandparent wouldn’t go for that?
Grand remark of the week
Ned Salley from San Jose, California was looking forward to a visit from daughter Tracie and little grandsons Timmy and Tommy.
“We don’t have any little kids like you around here anymore,” Ned remarked as he pulled Timmy up onto his lap.
A little frown flashed across Timmy’s face. “What did you do with them all Granddaddy?”
Dee and Tom, married more than 50 years, have eight grandchildren. Together with Key, they welcome questions, suggestions and Grand Remarks of the Week. Send to P.O. Box 27454, Towson, MD, 21285. Call 410-963-4426.