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Encourage Emotion Regulation with a Coping Cushion

I love the activity idea that I am going to share with you today. It is simple, low-cost, appeals to a wide age range, and can be used for children dealing with any number of emotional challenges. The idea was actually first shared with me by a parent who uses it with her son. The craft is a coping pillow …

Carey EmmersonEncourage Emotion Regulation with a Coping Cushion
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Assess Children’s Relationships Using “My Kingdom” Activity

We all know mental health issues do not exist in a vacuum, but are developed, maintained, and managed within people’s network of social relationships. Children’s mental health concerns are no exception. Kids are surrounded by parents, siblings, teachers, friends, and other members of their communities who have a powerful impact on their well-being.   Because of the very real impact …

Carey EmmersonAssess Children’s Relationships Using “My Kingdom” Activity
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Use these Craft Rocks to Build Rapport

If you are looking for a fun and simple craft to do with your child and adolescent therapy clients, these painted rocks are fun, look great, and can be used for a variety of therapeutic purposes ranging from assessment, to emotional expression, to teaching mindfulness. You Will Need: A selection of small rocks Acrylic paint Paintbrushes Steps: 1) Select your …

Carey EmmersonUse these Craft Rocks to Build Rapport
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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

“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

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

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

Build Emotional Awareness and Expression Using This Printable Game

Today I’m uploading a variation on the game of checkers. This version of the game features a board with a number of different feeling faces (like those found on a standard feelings chart) on the playing squares: happy, sad, angry, afraid, disgusted, surprised, loved, confused and joyful. Simply print off the gameboard, grab some movers, and get started.Set the game …

Carey EmmersonBuild Emotional Awareness and Expression Using This Printable Game

Agent Pensby and How He Can Help with Childhood Anxiety

I have always loved good therapeutic stories and the way that they excite, empower, and engage a child in the work of therapy. For this reason, I am thrilled to introduce Agent Pensby and the Golden Fish: A Tale About Anxiety. Agent Pensby seems to be a normal zoo penguin, but he is secretly a spy, hired by the Queen …

Carey EmmersonAgent Pensby and How He Can Help with Childhood Anxiety

Therapeutic Activities for Techsavvy Kids

As much as I was never a huge fan of screens in the playroom, I always seemed to find myself with one or more clients whose main interests were all things computer, ipod, xbox and to whom everything else in the playroom is “boring”. This seems to be increasingly the case as kids are plugged in from an earlier age.I …

Carey EmmersonTherapeutic Activities for Techsavvy Kids