My Anxiety Alarm Worksheet for Kids

Whenever I work with clients dealing with anxiety, I like to provide some psychoeducation near the beginning of counselling. It’s important to let kids know that anxiety, just like any other feeling, is not bad, but in the right context is actually useful.I use the fire alarm analogy, which I’ve found really helpful in giving kids an awareness of how …

Carey EmmersonMy Anxiety Alarm Worksheet for Kids

Self Care Spa for Self-Esteem and Depression

A “spa day” is a great activity to do at any stage of therapy when working with clients with problems with anxiety, stress, depression, or self-esteem. It is useful for building rapport in the early stages of counselling, as a celebration at the end, or as a special day in the middle of therapy. Plus, an hour of pampering is …

Carey EmmersonSelf Care Spa for Self-Esteem and Depression

Pool Noodle Extravaganza

What do you get if you combine pool noodles with balloons? Countless variations of high-energy fun to use with the kids you work with. If you have really energetic clients or group members, they might enjoy this more active session game during the early stage of counselling. Use this game for rapport building or assessing and promoting emotional expression. The …

Carey EmmersonPool Noodle Extravaganza

Life-Sized Sorry-Style Boardgame

If you are looking for an activity to play with a class or large group that will help teach teamwork and social skills, as well as helping review concepts that they’ve previously learned (how to manage anger, anxiety, manners, emotional expression, etc.), this game is a great one. Basically it’s a do-it-yourself, life-sized version of the game “Sorry”. Your students/clients …

Carey EmmersonLife-Sized Sorry-Style Boardgame

How to Teach Deep Breathing to Kids

From anger to anxiety to stress, so many clients deal with problems that are improved by the use of deep breathing and relaxation. No wonder it is one counselling technique that therapists find themselves using over and over again. Kids and teens regularly present with these same challenges. Deep breathing is an easy way to produce a vast improvement in …

Carey EmmersonHow to Teach Deep Breathing to Kids

Easiest Christmas Activities for Kids in Therapy

With Christmas coming soon, it can be hard during session to get the client to focus on anything else. Some kids get really excited about making Christmas crafts. While doing so doesn’t always lead to anything profoundly therapeutic, at the very least you will definitely build rapport. In many instances, however, you may find great opportunities for some therapeutic work. …

Carey EmmersonEasiest Christmas Activities for Kids in Therapy

Games to Promote Emotional Expression

One complaint that parents often have is that their children don’t talk to them about what they’re feeling. True, there are often situational factors involved. But other times, children simply haven’t learned the vocabulary or been encouraged to practice expressing their own emotions. For this reason, in the early stages of counselling, regardless of the presenting problem, I typically take …

Carey EmmersonGames to Promote Emotional Expression

Feelings Catcher

Activity Type: Craft Stage of Counselling: Middle, Ending Supplies Needed: Plain paper, markers, craft supplies as desired Remember cootie catchers from grade school? Basically they are paper games, folded from a single sheet of paper to look like this: Kids play the game by picking one of the four outer sections. Next you spell the word or count the number …

Carey EmmersonFeelings Catcher

File O’Favourites

Activity Type: Craft Stage of Counselling: Beginning Supplies Needed: Plain file folder                                  Markers, pencil crayons, or crayons When I first started my counselling internship, my supervisor suggested this really simple opening activity involving only a file folder and some markers, crayons, or pencil crayons. It’s a bit like Pictionary, but the client gets to create their own folder to keep. …

Carey EmmersonFile O’Favourites

Packages, Boxes, and Bags

Activity Type:                 Craft Stage of Counselling:  Middle or End Supplies Needed:         Jar (plastic is best), box, bag, or envelope                                           Craft supplies (glitter, scissors, construction paper, stickers, markers, glue)                                           Slips of paper for strategies I’ll start out this first resource post with one of my favourite counselling crafts. This activity can be adapted for use with kids as small as …

Carey EmmersonPackages, Boxes, and Bags