Friday, August 22, 2014

Velcro Emotions Charts

My mom recently donated a couple of bulletin boards to us after sorting through her old homeschool material. I used them to make emotions charts for the girls. I printed off emotion cards, cut them out and laminated them by sandwiching them in between two sheets of clear contact paper. I attached them to the board with pieces of Velcro. I left a spot on the board for the girls to post their feelings at any given moment. They love these and use them several times throughout the day. 

It's amazing how naming a child's emotions can calm them down instantly. Sometimes kids get overwhelmed by their feelings. It scares them to feel something they don't understand. Being able to identify their feelings (disappointed, frustrated, angry, nervous, jealous, etc.) is a very important skill to teach young children. It's the first step to being able to deal with them and come up with a solution for them so they can resolve the situation and be at peace. It also makes kids feel safe, loved and understood when their parents discuss their feelings with them and let them know that those feelings are okay and normal. I even tell my girls, "It's not fun to feel (fill in the blank...lonely, hurt, scared, etc.). Mommy feels that way sometimes too." And in that moment, I can see relief on their face and the fear and frustration melts away as they sense they are being understood. Discussing emotions is an important part of staying connected with your kids.

On the other side of the board, I posted a worship song of the week and a Bible verse of the week. I chose about 10 of each and laminated all of them so I have plenty to choose from over the next couple months. I will probably cycle through the 10 throughout the school year so they learn all of them well. 

I hung the charts next to each of the girls' beds, which is where they typically retreat when they're in a bad mood. This makes it easy to talk about emotions and feelings and try to choose the appropriate one for each specific situation. 

For our bedtime routine, after lights out we recite our Bible verse, sing our song and take turns praying. It is an awesome way to end the day and the girls calm down faster and more peacefully this way.

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