Tapping for Under 12s

Children and Emotions

, Under 12

Help your child to understand emotions. 

Remember to keep it simple.

If they can’t name the emotion it is OK for them to simply call it an upset.

Tapping for Toddlers and Babies

Adapted from Peta Stapleton’s work and others.

Children respond really well to tapping, they are a lot less complicated than we adults and as such generally need less tapping and less detail.

, Under 12If your child is really young or even a baby, you can gently tap on them or rub/massage their tapping points, it helps to soothe and calm them.

Have fun by giving the points different names.

Try rubbing their foot as indicated here to help soothe them. , Under 12

There are tapping songs on you tube that are great for your kids to sing and tap to.

You can also tap or rub without words or using phrases such as:

‘Even though I’m really upset right now, I’m a good boy/girl and Mummy and Daddy love me’

(or whatever is appropriate for your situation)

‘Even though I’m scared, right now I’m safe and I am a good boy/girl and Mummy and Daddy love me and keep me safe’

‘Even though I’m really mad right now, I’m OK ,I’m a good kid anyway, Mum and Dad love me’


It’s enough to have younger children stomping (or whatever is relevant to the emotion) and tapping, whichever points they are comfortable with.

Tapping for Under 12s

Adapted from Peta Stapleton’s work and others.

For large trauma’s or high intensities that don’t seem to resolve I recommend working with a qualified practitioner.

Bridges for encouraging your children to try tapping 😊

  • I know a way to calm you down quickly
  • I know a trick to get you over being mad – like that
  • I can see you are really worried, want to try something that will make you less worried?
  • You know I have this really great way to stop you being upset. Adults usually use it but sometimes I use it for kids too, I guess you are old enough.
  • You don’t have to tell me what is bothering you. I have a way you can get over it and not even tell me what it is.  You are totally in control and don’t have to say anything.     (and just get them tapping)
  • I want to teach you something that you can use anytime YOU want to stop being upset.


5 Steps for Under 12’s for Feeling Calmer Using Tapping

  1. What is your problem? (You look really upset/hurt/angry, what’s happened?)

I feel sad, no one wanted to play with me after school,


How bad is it out of 10, or with a show of outstretched arms.

(Get them to indicate how bad it is for them, arms open really wide would indicate really big or bad (10) and arms coming closer together as it calms and becomes less important.) – Write it here.

  1. Say it in a sentence 3 times as you tap on the side of the hand point., Under 12

Starting even though (I’m mad/hurt/upset/embarrassed,

I’m a great kid anyway/ I’m OK, and Mum and Dad love me


Even though I feel sad, no one wanted to play

With me after school, I am OK, Mum and Dad

Love me (repeat x 3)


  1. Tap through the points with both hands saying a short word or two to remind yourself of the problem – write it here.


I feel sad


  1. Take a breath and guess the number now

out of 10 (use outstretched arms again to take, Under 12

a measure) – write it here.


  1. Tap again on all of the points until you feel

really calm.


Repeat the tapping on all of the points until

Your child feels completely calm.


As your child matures you can develop the language and utilize more of the points

About EFT 

For example; if you child was feeling worried you would tap on the side of the hand point 3 points stating what the problem is and giving an affirmation. Remember to rate the intensity at the beginning and end, keep tapping until your child is calm.

Side of the Hand:  Even though I’m worried about…… I’m OK

Top of the Head: I feel worried

Side of the Eye: So worried

Under the Eye: I feel so worried

Under the Nose: I’m really worried

Chin Point: I feel worried

Under the Arm: I feel so worried

Side of the Hand: I feel really worried

Helping Your Child to Understand and Express Emotions

(developing their emotional intelligence)

When our children get upset, we can get upset, too, we are human after all.

Your child isn’t creating those feelings, and he needs your help to manage them. The only way to resolve emotions is to go through them.

Here’s the game plan

  1. Calm yourself firsthold and breathe, heart breathing, energy toning
  • Use your pause button: Stop, focus on yourself first, take some breaths, count to 10, use whatever skills you have, to calm yourself.
  • Remind yourself that your goal is to calm the storm for your child, to teach them that it’s OK to have feelings and how to manage or release them.
  • Remember although it might sound personal it actually isn’t. Your child’s emotions are about them. Even if she’s screaming “I hate you!” This is about her reaction to something that’s happened: her tangled-up feelings and still-developing brain.
  • Calm yourself with a mantra: “It’s not an emergency” or “This is an opportunity to be there for my child when he/she’s upset.”
  • Notice the sensations in your body.
  • Notice if you feel annoyance, or the urge to make your child’s feelings go away, again a very natural reaction, and that is about you and for you to explore (and tap on/down).

(a link here to the about EFT page)

  1. Connect and create safety
  • Reach out to connect emotionally, and if you can, physically.
  • Create safety with your touch, your warmth, your tone, your attitude.
  • Give your child the verbal and/or nonverbal message: “I will help you…You’re safe…You can handle this… I love you even though you are angry/sad”
  • If you breathe slowly and deeply, your child will usually begin to breathe more slowly.
  • Begin tapping and they may follow.


  1. Empathise
  • Match your child’s tone. When kids feel that you really get how upset they are, they don’t need to escalate.
  • Welcome the emotions and reflect them, mirroring your child’s tone. “You look so mad!” or “You seem a little worried about this sleepover.”
  • If your child is describing a problem to you, repeat back to him/her what you’ve heard: “I hear you loud and clear. You’re fed up with your brother going into your room and taking your gum.”
  • If your child is expressing anger at you, resist the urge to tell him/her to be appropriate. Instead, acknowledge the feelings and invite him/her to tell you what she’s upset about. “You must be so upset to talk to me that way, Michael. Tell me what’s happening.”
  • If you don’t know what your child is feeling or your child gets angry when you “name” her emotions, “upset” is a good all-purpose word: “I hear how upset you areabout this.”
  • Describing what your child is physically expressing helps him/her feel seen and heard and can either help you name emotions or intentionally avoid it: “I see you’re biting your lip. You look worried.” Or “Your arms are crossed over your chest like this, and your brows are tight, like this. I wonder what’s going on?”
  • Acknowledge your child’s perspective. “You wish that….” or “This isn’t what you wanted….”
  • If your child is crying, words can be a distraction. Use them sparingly, to create safety and welcome the emotion: “Everybody needs to cry sometimes. It’s good to feel those tears and let them go. I’m right here. You’re safe.”
  1. Double-check to be sure your child feels understood by what you’ve said

This way, you don’t have to worry about whether you were able to accurately reflect your child’s feelings. Just ask.

“Is that right?”

“Is that what you’re telling me?”

“Am I getting that?”

  • Your child may agree — “Of course I’m mad!”— and elaborate.
  • Your child may correct you: “I’m not disappointed! I’m mad!” In that case, try again. If possible, use your child’s exact words so they know you’re listening: “I’m sorry, Caleb. I see now how mad you are. Tell me more about why.”
  • Or your child may correct you — “I’m NOT MAD!”— even though it’s clear that you were accurate in your perception. That’s a signal that your child is feeling judged or analysed rather than understood. Acknowledge the correction and start over, connecting more as you describe the child’s perspective: “I hear you, Lucas. You’re not mad. Let me see if I understand. You wanted X. Is that right?”

Allow your child to feel what he/she is actually feeling. What’s important is that she feels understood. His/her awareness of what she’s feeling will shift as she moves through the emotions.

  1. Deepen the conversation

You can do this by offering support, validating your child’s emotion, or simply inviting your child to tell you more. Validation doesn’t necessarily mean you agree, only that you understand why your child would feel this way. Let yourself feel some of what your child is feeling, while you still stay centered. If you really feel the emotion with your child, then you may get tears in your eyes at how heart breaking this must be for your child.

Have your child tap their points as they tell their story, that will really help them to process their emotions quickly.

  • “Ouch, that must have hurt! Want to show me what happened?”
  • “Oh, Mary, no wonder you’re upset.”
  • “It could be really embarrassing, to have your teacher say that.”
  • “You’re saying that I love your sister more….Sam, that must feel so awful, to feel that…”
  • “I didn’t understand how important this was to you. Tell me more about this.”
  • “I hear how angry you are about this. What can I do to help make this better?”
  • “So I hear you’re upset because of X and also Y! Is there anything else?” Asking if there’s anything else often opens the floodgates to get to the heart of why your child is upset. He may start with what a lousy mother you are for making oatmeal again, and end up telling you that he thinks you love his brother more, or he’s being bullied at school.
  • “Thank you for telling me this. I’m sorry that what I did upset you so much. Please tell me more.” When your child is angry at you, let him know you’re listening. You may find out something that will transform your relationship for the better. Or you may find that his anger has nothing to do with you after all.
  • Describe the incident without judging, so your child feels understood. “Julie wanted to play with your doll and you were worried. You said ‘No!’ and hit Julie and you both cried. Right?” Telling the story helps the child to calm down, reflect, and integrate the emotions, as the emotional experience of the right frontal lobe is articulated by the verbal, more rational understanding from the left frontal lobe.


  1. Problem solve

Most of the time, when kids (and adults) feel their emotions are understood and accepted, the feelings lose their charge and begin to dissipate. This leaves an opening for problem-solving.

If your child still seems upset and negative and isn’t open to problem-solving, that’s a sign that she hasn’t worked through the emotions yet and you need to go back to the earlier steps.

When your child is ready to problem-solve, resist the urge to solve the problem for them unless they ask you to; that gives your child the message that you don’t have confidence in their ability to handle it. If they feel stuck, help them brainstorm and explore options: “Hmmm…..So you think you might do X. I wonder what would happen then?”

Time-consuming? Yes. But you’ll notice that as you get more comfortable, you’ll move through the steps quickly.

Even better, you’ll see your child get better at expressing emotions in a constructive way. Emotion coaching raises kids who are more emotionally intelligent. It also helps you stay calm when your child is upset, so it creates a more peaceful household.

More love and connection all around 😊

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