8 Games that You Can Use to Help Develop Kids’ Emotional Intelligence

As I’ve written in previous posts, I like to take time early in my work with a child or young person to talk about emotions, to assess what the child’s emotional awareness is, her ability to express a wide range of emotions, and how she copes with various emotions. Having a sense of a child’s emotional intelligence at the start …

Carey Emmerson8 Games that You Can Use to Help Develop Kids’ Emotional Intelligence

6 Ways to Use Feeling Charts to Help Build Children’s Emotional Intelligence

I love using feeling charts with my therapy clients. For almost every kind of presenting issue, some kind of emotion chart will usually make an appearance within the first session or two when I am working with a child. Using this tool helps me assess and improve a child’s emotional awareness and vocabulary, which are important aspects of a child’s …

Carey Emmerson6 Ways to Use Feeling Charts to Help Build Children’s Emotional Intelligence

Help Kids Establish Safety and Security with “My Safe Base” Handout

No matter our age, we all need to feel safe. Safety is so vital for our lives that it’s at the very base of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, only one step up from physiological needs like food and shelter. After we are fed and clothed and housed, we need to feel safe before we are able to pursue other needs …

Carey EmmersonHelp Kids Establish Safety and Security with “My Safe Base” Handout

Help Kids Overcome Anxiety with These Exposure Worksheets

One of the most common problems clients will bring to therapy is anxiety. Estimated to afflict as much as 33.7% of the population at some point in life, an anxiety disorder can be a debilitating issue to endure. Cognitive behavioural therapy continues to be the standard approach for working with people with anxiety disorders. In this model, clients learn coping …

Carey EmmersonHelp Kids Overcome Anxiety with These Exposure Worksheets

How to Help Children Overcome Trauma Using Salt Dough Crafts

Clients with a history of severe trauma often need help overcoming symptoms of post-traumatic stress that can arise unexpectedly and overwhelm them. Once triggered, these individuals can feel that they are reliving a traumatic event all over again. They may experience flashbacks to the traumatic event, have nightmares, panic, or dissociate from the present moment and their own bodies, as …

Carey EmmersonHow to Help Children Overcome Trauma Using Salt Dough Crafts

More than a Collection: Using Seashells in Counselling

Finding items to re-purpose is one creative and cost-effective way to come up with new therapy activities, so I’m always on the lookout for something that I can take and put to new use. During some spring (or maybe last fall) cleaning, I came across a small seashell collection from my childhood that I had been storing in my basement …

Carey EmmersonMore than a Collection: Using Seashells in Counselling

How to Use Comics to Teach Children Positive Self-Talk

I spend a great deal of time with clients working on identifying and challenging unhelpful thoughts. Teens and adults alike can really benefit from understanding how their thinking affects their moods and their behaviours. Children can also benefit from this type or work. However, working with little people on the “C” part of cognitive behavioural therapy can be challenging. Young …

Carey EmmersonHow to Use Comics to Teach Children Positive Self-Talk

Coping Skills Cheat Sheet

As a part of therapy, I regularly ask clients to make some kind of wellness plan or coping plan using their favourite coping skills. Strong emotions from anger, to depression, to anxiety, to stress all benefit from the use of coping skills. At the same time, it can be hard to think of strategies in a moment of intense emotions. …

Carey EmmersonCoping Skills Cheat Sheet

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

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