Child-friendly education

What to Expect of a 4 Year Old

Kindergarters begin to relate to their gender to identify. Boys do not want to be considered girls and vice versa. They are now looking more closely at their bodies to determine the differences: ""I am a boy because I have a penis."" Uncle Ralf is also a boy, so he must also have a penis. ""Aunt Susanne does not have one because she is a girl. ""

Kindergarten children are also starting to get interested in where they're from and the topic of pregnancy and childbirth fascinates them, especially when a sibling is on the way.

It is natural for a kindergartner to want to know more about his body - and yours - and not be ashamed to ask (Much more likely, parents will blush or try to avoid the subject). At the same time, kindergartners will not understand the physical components of sex and the feelings of adult lovers, and a discussion of erections, periods, contractions or other bodily functions will rather upset them.

How to talk about it

Stay calm and relaxed.

Stay as factual as possible if your child wants to know about sex or other difficult issues, so your child does not feel that certain topics are embarrassing or taboo.

Of course that's easier said than done. Most adults feel insecure when talking to children about sex because they are not used to it and they are afraid to talk too much when the topic first comes to the table. The best tactic is to answer the questions calmly and directly, no matter how unusual or embarrassing they appear.

If these conversations are difficult for you, rehearse their answers beforehand - in the head or with your partner. Take advantage of the questions that come up when you and your child are relaxed - playing puzzles, having a tea break, or putting your child to bed. Also, the car is a good place to discuss such things because you can keep your eyes on the road and avoid eye contact - which may make it easier for you in the beginning.

""It's important for parents to explain difficult topics without sounding worried,"" says psychology professor Jerome Keagan of Harvard University, ""the child gets the tone, more than the words.""

Keep it simple.

In kindergarten, the best answers are the short and straightforward ones. ""You ask where you're from, you're born in Mama's belly and grown there until you're born.""Even if you do not want to sound like a doctor, you should use the anatomically correct terms ("" penis ""and"" vagina, ""not"" pippi ""or"" pussy. "") This helps to make the child feel that sexual Issues are not embarrassing.

A three-year-old child may be content with a short answer, a four-year-old, in case of doubt, has the next questions: ""Did Robert grow into Daddy's belly? How does a baby get food when it's in the stomach? When does the baby come out? ""Provide answers as long as your child shows interest, but do not overburden them if they've stopped asking and asking for their own building blocks.

Support His Interest. < Whatever your child asks, do not try to strangle it: ""Where did you get that?"" Or stop the conversation with the words, ""We'll talk about it later, now it's meal time."" Either way, your child it will conclude that his natural questions are taboo and that it is even evil to think of them. Instead, praise his curiosity: ""That's a good question."" (This sentence also gives you a momentary air to reconsider your answer) Afterwards, encourage your child to ask further questions, ""You can always ask me.""

Of course, you never know when or where such questions will arise - if your child loudly asks in line at the supermarket what a vagina is Give him a quiet answer and tell him that it is best to discuss questions about intimate things in private. Even if it becomes embarrassing for you, try not to silence your child. Your child needs your willingness to be honest with him and to help him through the rapids of childhood, puberty and life.

Take advantage of everyday opportunities.

You also do not have to wait for your child to ask. Perhaps you have long since started talking about sexuality and multiplication when you saw the suckling goat in the zoo or when your child found the broken swallow egg on the sidewalk. Many children's books and films give opportunities to talk about babies and childbirth. Some parents use the bedtime story to look at pictures of their sexuality and offspring with their children (a classic is still ""Peter, Ida and Minimum"", a storybook telling the story of a family with two children, another one) Baby expected - awarded the German Picture Book Award).

Bring privacy close.

Your kindergartner can already understand that there are ""private times"" and that it has to knock when a door is locked. Also follow this rule when the door to the nursery is closed. Your child will not require privacy and would rather be accompanied in the bathroom, but it will understand a rule better if the adults stick to it.Your child can already learn that his private parts may only be touched by his mother and father, his babysitter and the pediatrician, and only when he needs help after the toilet or when washing, or to carry out an examination.

Ask children ... Parents answer

""Where do I come from?""

This highly philosophical and banal question is often the first question a kindergartner has about life. A good answer already mentioned above is, ""You were made in the belly of your mama and grew there until you were ready to be born."" Some children may want to have more details: ""A daddy's seed and an egg from mom got together and conceived a new child - you! Then you got bigger in a special shell called a womb and it was in mom's stomach.""

Some further questions your child might have are, ""Are all babies done this way?"" - ""Yes, all human children and also many animal children are made like this."" Or ""Can fathers also have children?"" - ""No, only female bodies can make babies grow.""

""What is sex?""

Normally kindergartners only ask this question if they have picked something up somewhere - from older children or on TV.

But when the question comes, do not be afraid. Say ""Sex is a kind of cuddle that moms and dads do to show themselves that they love each other."" If your child wants to know more about it ""When adults love each other, they can be as close together with sex as they are, caressing and kissing in a special way, and sometimes they make a baby out of it."" Questions that may follow are: ""Can I have sex, why do you have sex, what does 'love make', is it sex, what you do in bed?""

""Can you show me how to have babies makes?"" If a particularly curious child once heard of the ""special way"" of cuddling and kissing with parents and having a baby, it may want to have a show. Then stay affectionate, but direct: ""No, adults only make babies when they have time for themselves.""

""Can I help make a sibling?""

You can start with this question To explain to your child about the physical differences between children and adults. ""No, babies can only be done by adults, you're not there yet, but you can do it later."" Similar questions are, ""Can I have a baby? Will I have a baby if I hug Mandy? Why do not we make a baby if you hug me in the evening?"" (""Because adults have a special way of hugging and kissing and only adults can have a baby."")

""How does the child come out of your gut?""

Kindergartners love the topic of pregnancy and childbirth Childbirth and can imagine everything from the mother who vomits the new baby to the father who opens the mother like a zipper and takes the baby out.The simplest answer is, ""After a long time, the baby becomes too big for the mother's belly and then has to be born."" Many children also understand, ""Our baby is born when it needs more food than Mama's stomach can get and it gets too big to stick in. Then Mom and Dad drive to the hospital together and the doctors help Grandma and Grandpa take care of you and after a few days Mama and the new baby come home and we're all together. ""

If your child is not satisfied with that yet, help maybe the literature mentioned above.

Other questions about the pregnancy can be: ""Does the baby feel alone in the stomach, is it hungry, does it sleep in the stomach, how does it look now, why not fall out when Mama goes to the bathroom?""

""What are you doing?""

Many parents fear the moment their child bursts into the bedroom while having sex. It can happen. While it may be difficult to avoid confusion, try to be straightforward (and then close the bedroom door the next time). For example, say, ""Honey, your dad and I need time for ourselves, and when you go back to your room, I'll come to you right away."" Then get dressed, take a few deep breaths and go to your child. ""We loved each other because we wanted to show how much we like each other, usually the door is locked, but this time we forgot.""

Depending on your child's reaction, you may ask, ""Did that bother you, can I do something for you?"" Make sure that your child is not scared or disturbed and assure him that it did not do anything wrong (do not complain: ""You should have knocked!""). Depending on what your child has seen, your child's reaction may be ""Did Dad hurt Mom?"" to a curious ""Why did you make such sounds?"" or a ""Did you struggle?"" rich.

If your child does not seem worried, you do not need to go into detail, especially with younger children. It may not have seen much because it was dark or you were lying under the blanket. It then suffices to say, ""We have made something especially beautiful together"" or ""We hug each other because we love each other.""

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