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How to Build Self-Esteem and Social Skills Using Laundry Supplies

Here’s an activity for social skills or self-esteem groups, or simply for building trust and rapport amongst group members. All you need are some clothespins and some thin, permanent markers of varying colours. This activity will probably work best after a session or two, as group members should at least know each other a little bit and be comfortable enough …

Carey EmmersonHow to Build Self-Esteem and Social Skills Using Laundry Supplies
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Mind-n-Mettle: A Little Tech and a Ton of Fun Building Emotional Intelligence

Identifying and recognizing emotions is a tough skill for many children to learn. Kids with a history of trauma, ADHD, those on the autism spectrum, and many others may struggle to recognize other people’s emotions. And yet, this skill is so very important in helping children to develop empathy, friendships, and participate in basic social interactions. Social skills group activities …

Carey EmmersonMind-n-Mettle: A Little Tech and a Ton of Fun Building Emotional Intelligence
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How to Teach Kids About Anxious Thoughts Using a Jellyfish Suncatcher

My thermometer hit 34 degrees celsius today. And it feels HOT. The sky is cloudless. The sun is blistering. All this summer has me wishing for the beach. With that thought in mind, here’s a fun, beachy craft you can make with kids struggling with anxiety. This activity will help children talk about anxious thoughts and how those thoughts feed …

Carey EmmersonHow to Teach Kids About Anxious Thoughts Using a Jellyfish Suncatcher

“Today I Feel Happy”: A Feeling Chart to Build Kids’ Assertive Communication

As therapists know, if you hope to be effective in helping children, you must involve the family. No matter the issue, if the parents are not supportive or knowledgeable of what is going on in your work with their child, chances are the progress won’t stick. That is what take-home activities can be so helpful. Parents get to be directly …

Carey Emmerson“Today I Feel Happy”: A Feeling Chart to Build Kids’ Assertive Communication

Do You Know a Superhero? – A Create-Your-Own Therapeutic Story

Several weeks ago I discussed some of the benefits of storytelling for kids in therapy in a post titled Once Upon a Time: How Storytelling Can Help Children in Therapy. In that post I provided this infographic to summarize the various benefits storytelling can offer clients. Because of its many benefits, storytelling often plays an important role in the therapy …

Carey EmmersonDo You Know a Superhero? – A Create-Your-Own Therapeutic Story

4 Awesome Ways to Teach Stressed and Anxious Children about Relaxation

Last week’s post looked at ways to use crafts to teach children about relaxation. Today’s post is all about specific physical movements and exercises that aim to teach children how to relax their bodies. These ideas can be easily applied to the counselling or therapy setting. The idea is that if kids can learn to control their own bodies, they …

Carey Emmerson4 Awesome Ways to Teach Stressed and Anxious Children about Relaxation

4 Crafts to Teach Kids About Relaxation

Relaxation is about the body. So is tension. When we tell a child to “just relax,” we are asking them to do something that is not only emotional or mental, but that is highly physical as well. And it is not easy. Many adults, let alone children, have never been taught to relax or to notice feelings of tension in …

Carey Emmerson4 Crafts to Teach Kids About Relaxation

5 Ways to Help Children with Separation Anxiety

Danielle was 8 years-old when her anxiety first showed up. Before that she had no problems going to school or being away from her mother, Lisa. But all of a sudden it became a struggle to get her out the door in the morning. First Lisa had to drive Danielle to school, since Danielle made such a fuss about walking …

Carey Emmerson5 Ways to Help Children with Separation Anxiety

4 Puzzles to Get to Know Your Clients

Here is an activity that will help you build rapport, get to know a new client, and assist you in your initial assessment of the child. These puzzles could be useful with kids with any presenting problem. Each of the puzzles features a colourful picture on the front, along with an affirmation statement (e.g., I am strong), which can launch …

Carey Emmerson4 Puzzles to Get to Know Your Clients

Once Upon a Time: How Storytelling Can Help Children in Therapy

I love stories. A good story, whether in a movie, a novel, a picture book, or the words of a friend is one of my favourite things. Stories are fun. They teach us about the world and about ourselves. They evoke emotion. They inspire us and empower us. Stories do all these things and more when used in a therapeutic …

Carey EmmersonOnce Upon a Time: How Storytelling Can Help Children in Therapy