Parenting is a skill / art rather than a job, though it is tough and agreed the fact that neither it has any manual to follow nor the children are born with booklets in their hands. But there is always a possibility that we can create our own manual or set of guidelines which will definitely suit certain category of children, when we say category, it simply means that for one given situation, some children behave in one manner and others differently. Every child has his own way to approach and react to the world. It is their own “STYLE” that is present in them right form birth. The different approach and reaction of child to the world is called “TEMPERAMENT”.

Here a question arises, why does one has to know or understand child’s temperament?      

“If you have to change the visible (FRUITS) then first you have to change the invisible (ROOTS)”

One of the biggest burdens of the parents today is being guilty for their short comings, mistakes and inadequacies. A feeling of guilt that a parent what she/he had done or not done. This guilt can be at least reduced if not removed by conscious parenting.

If a parent understands the psychology of a child through temperament, then the approach towards the child would be easy as the temperament says about his interests, strengths and weakness. For obvious reasons parent would give the kind of environment required. Strengthen his strengths; work on his weakness, so that the outcome of this parenting would be a good human being, successful individual, who will also contribute to the society and country’s growth.

Types of Temperament

Based on humor the temperaments are categorized in 4 types

  • Choleric temperament (Humor: Blood)
  • Sanguine temperament (Humor: Yellow Bile)
  • Phlegmatic temperament (Humor: Phlegm)
  • Melancholic temperament (Humor: Black Bile)

Child shows sanguine temperament but their predominant (either one or two) temperament(s) can be seen only by the age of 5-6 years.  Children tend to have better temperaments when parents / caregivers show lots of support and affection, set limits, use positive discipline, and respond consistently to their needs.

Choleric Child (Element: Fire)

Fire is the element of choleric trait and child is confident energetic and intense type. Like fire’s flame, the choleric child is quick and forceful in his thinking and emotions .Choleric child is often the one that parents and teachers find the most challenging to work with. They are full of fiery energy. They are born leaders, self starters, can-do attitude. The child enjoys spicy food, speaks loudly, and focuses intensely on a single thing. He is quick in his thinking and emotions.

Dealing with Choleric children

  • Give him hard responsible and useful task with clear beginnings and endings whose results are clearly visible
  • They do a terrific job in helping others, give them opportunity.
  • Don’t try to control them, punishing them, making them apologize or criticizing them will have a very negative impact.  
  • Games like baseball and football are best for them

Melancholic Child (Element: Earth)

Exactly like their element Earth, Melancholic personality has lot of patience; they are perfectionist and terrific thinkers. They care a lot about other people’s pain. They take many things personally. Of the four arithmetic processes, subtraction tends to be their favorite.

Dealing with Melancholic children

  • Thinkers and planners, take responsibility very seriously.
  • Be sure eats well, exercises and sleeps well.  Never push them; they will take time to learn.
  • These children are very empathic. They love to share. It’s very rare that they do mistakes.
  • String instruments will suit them the most.  Stories of people who struggled a lot and achieved.  
  • Always make them to “see half glassful” attitude.

Phlegmatic Child (Element: Water)

Phlegmatic personality has patience and inner tranquility. Phlegmatic children are peaceful and relaxed.  Water is their element. They think twice before acting. They enjoy food.

Dealing with Phlegmatic children

  • Phlegmatic children are organized but slow, it is easy if you set routines and stick to them as much as possible. If changes made inform them prior.
  • Phlegmatic trait children are very much trust worthy, they keep their promises and expect the same from others.
  • They are happy that they are able to follow the rules.
  • Phlegmatic are food lovers, food is a good motivator and better to give any tasks before food.

Sanguine Child (Element: Air)

Sanguine personality is creative, busy, social and fun loving. Their element is AIR and is also the reason they like movements, from one place to another, they can be compared to butterflies, they always want something new. Sanguine child wants to know everything and everybody.

Dealing with Sanguine children

  • Sanguine child like movements, one cannot expect them to sit at one place for longer time even while learning.
  • They have a high need to be loved and appreciated. They crave for recognition.  
  • Parents/ teachers need to teach them loyalty and consistency to help them balance their temperament.
  • Sanguine trait children tend to have little forgetfulness, need to be disciplined then & there; otherwise they wouldn’t understand the context why he/she is being preached about.