One of my favorite school activities is to support classroom teachers with teaching about emotions and helping kids to learn strategies to develop self regulation skills. I am so lucky to get to work with amazing SLPs (Speech and Language Pathologists) and we will often go into classes together to work on these skills. I am also blessed to work with awesome teachers who understand the importance of this and invite us into their classrooms on a regular basis.
There has been so much research recently on the importance of kids learning emotional regulation skills. One of the first steps in learning about emotional regulation is learning about the different emotions that we all feel. I love using the Zones of Regulation curriculum by Leah Kuypers in the classrooms and I also like to use the below books to supplement to help younger kids learn about emotions.
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This book teaches kids about basic emotions with really cute illustrations. This is one of the first books I use in pre school and early elementary classes. My preschool aged daughter also loves this book and has helped her learn about different emotions.
These 3 Pout Pout Fish books are my favorite of the series for teaching about basic emotions. I also love that on YouTube there are songs to each of these stories by Gordon True that are soooooo cute!!!! I also like using the Pout Pout Fish Goes to School when doing lessons on using your inner coach/inner critic (positive self talk vs negative self talk)
I might be partial to this book as I love giraffes, but it is a really sweet book about a giraffe who is sad because he can’t dance like his other animal friends but then learns to dance to different music in his own unique way.
On a final note, I wanted to include that it is so important to let kids know that it is OK to feel all emotions… there are no “good” or “bad” emotions. Once children have an understanding of the different emotions-what they look like and feel like, then we can discuss self regulation strategies that can be used in the classroom when feeling some of these emotions (ie: frustrated, tired, angry, nervous.)
Hope you found this info helpful! I am always looking for more great books on this subject to use with younger kids..I’d love to hear about some of your favorites!
By Kimberly Heyer OTR/L 5/2017