By Christa J Koch
your preschooler happens to see a monster in a book or on TV, he may
assume they are real, and he may be scared. Reassure him that monsters are
not real. Monsters can't hurt him. Even with your reassurance it may take
a while for your words to sink in. It is not that your preschooler does
not believe you, it is just that their fear can be greater then your
If a fear of monsters is
causing a problem at nighttime, you may need to take special steps to
reassure your preschooler that there are no monsters in their room.
Holding your child’s hand and walk them through their room while it is
well lit is a good start. Together check for monsters. Be sure to check
under the bed, in all the closets, in all the drawers, and behind the
curtains. Check your child's room for shadows. Make sure that a
nightlight, streetlights, moon etc… do not cast any ghastly shadows in
your preschoolers room.
There are some other
techniques you can try to help reassure your preschool that their are no
monsters in their room. Not all techniques will work for all children. The
life of a preschooler can be a very magical place. "I believe it will
happen, therefore it will." These techniques may seem silly to you, but
you no longer live in that magical land of the preschoolers. So, give each
technique the benefit of the doubt.
Trap: Offer your child some simple
household materials. (Paper tube, strawberry basket, pipe cleaner, paper,
juice bottle lids, glue, crayons, etc…) Allow them to make their own
monster trap. Several can be made if it makes your preschooler more
comfortable. When they are complete place them just outside your child's
More Monster Spray: Buy a can of some great smelling room
freshener and make a new label for the can. A picture of a monster with an
X through it will work fine. Offer to use the No More Monster spray in
your preschooler's room before it is time to sleep. This spray sure does
repel those scary monsters.
No Monsters Allowed: Get out
some basic craft supplies and let your preschooler make a "No Monsters
Allowed" sign for their bedroom door. This will tell those monsters to
turn back and find another room to live in.
Monster Button: Make a "no monster button" on a piece of
paper. Make it around the size of a light switch. Tape it to your
preschooler's wall. At night before you turn off the light tell your
preschooler not to worry that you are pressing the special No
Give your preschooler the power of light. Buy a small plastic flashlight.
The kind that when you let go of the button the light goes out. This may
help older preschoolers settle their own feelings about monsters. If he
can shine a light on that shadow that is scaring him, he might start to
realize it is just a shadow.
isn’t this being dishonest to my child?
The "honest approach" can make the problem worse. Your preschooler’s
imagination can take over all reasonable thought. Attempting to explain
and examine your preschooler's feeling might only lead to more confusion
and fear. The simplest approach is more often the better route to go. When
using any of the above techniques the key is you ability to pull it off.
If you think offering your child a monster spray is ridiculous, you will
probably not be able to convince your child that it will work.
to treat your child’s fear with all seriousness. Telling your child
"Don’t be silly, Monsters are not real." will only cause hurt
feelings, and a blow at your child’s self-esteem. For more information
about children’s fear visit the article I am
About the Author: Christa Koch is the proud
owner/developer of the website www.preschooleducation.com.
She has been teaching preschool children for over 13 years ,and has loved every minute of it. Christa lives in
Pennsylvania with her wonderful husband Mike and daughter Haley.