Search This Blog

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Volcano and When Sophie Gets Angry-Really Really Angry; Feelings 8

Anger is something everyone experiences and it is often triggered by frustration.  Understanding why we are upset, frustrated or mad is the first step in finding a solution.  It's okay to get angry, but it's not okay to take the anger out on someone else as in punching  someone or throwing something.  Understanding what triggers our anger, is the beginning process in being able to learn steps in calming down.  

Art Activity: Volcano
Scroll to bottom of post for the volcano outline.  Cut out a volcano in brown paper, and the top of the volcano in red or orange paper.  Glue the pieces of the volcano on the background paper.  From the bottom of the volcano up, mark five places as follows: 10, 25, 50, 75, and 100 at the top of the flame.  Use something as a marker; a penny or a nickle work well.

Going through scenarios from, When Sophie Gets Angry, or the scenarios listed below.  Place your token on the level of anger (or no anger), on the volcano.

10 is calm and 100 is the angriest.  Ask: If someone took your cookie without asking, how angry would it make you; pick a number (Odds are a child will pick a fairly high number).  Ask: What if someone pushed you down on the ground, how angry would you be then; pick a number.  Obviously, someone pushing you down is going to make a person angrier than taking some cookies.

1. A child grabs your toy doll/truck from you.

2. Your parent gives you cookies for a snack.

3. Your friend doesn't sit with you at lunch.

4. A child trips you on purpose and you fall.

5. Your parent is not listening to what you are trying to say

Calming Down
Brainstorm ways to calm down, and practice each one.  This may be a review for some, but it is good to repeat this process.
1. Slowly count to 10 over and over.  While you are counting, you are inhaling in very slowly, and then exhaling just as slow. 
2. Count backwards from 50.  For younger children start at 10 and count backwards.  Continue over and over if needed.  
3. Think about something that makes you happy.  Stay with your happy place until you are no longer angry. 
4. Tell yourself, “Calm down, I don’t want to get in trouble; calm down, I don’t want to get in trouble…”   
5. Write out why you are angry on a piece of paper.  After you are done, crumple the paper up and throw away the angry feelings.  Or, rip the paper up in small pieces.
6. Blow up a balloon, say why you are angry out loud or to yourself, let the balloon go and as you let the balloon go, let your anger go with it.

Suggested Stories: 

When Sophie Gets Angry-Really Really Angry; by Molly Bang; Younger
Sophie has a temper and it flares up, especially when her sister demands a turn with a favorite stuffed gorilla.  It gets worse when Sophie's mother passes judgement, and then Sophie trips over a toy truck...  Sophie is liken to a volcano with infernal shades of orange, yellow, and red.  Sophie runs and cries, then gradually a calmer Sophie begins noticing birds and ferns, until she returns home relaxed again.

Finding My Happy Place, by Ava Hope; Older   Chicken Soup for the Teens Soul
This is a story about a teenage girl coping over living with an alcoholic parent.

Volcano: Copy and paste

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Responsibility; Character Education 6

Abraham Lincoln: You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.
Williams Howard Taft: Too many people don't care what happens so long as it doesn't happen to them.

To be responsible is to do the things that need to be done.  It's a person who is reliable, dependable, and does not blame others for their actions.  The habit of blaming others greatly hinders people from meeting their responsibilities, (cause and effect).  We want freedom to make our own decisions, however, it is not always clear to us that decisions carry consequences.  This is a character trait that is a process and evolves; when people are able to meet their responsibilities, they feel proud of themselves and have a feeling of satisfaction.  

Clifford the Small Red Puppy, by Norman Birdwell; Younger
It takes responsibility to take care of a dog, especially Clifford.  This book also includes the concept of appearances being deceiving and the potential that something may turn out differently than what it would seem.

Art; Clifford's Bones
Scroll to the bottom of Responsibility and copy the dog house on colored paper.  Print out bones.  Cut out and glue on a background piece of construction paper.  For grass cut a strip of green paper and make cuts on the strip 3/4 the way down and glue on the background page.  

A Good Reason to Look Up, by Shaquille O'Neal; Older
Chicken Soup for the Soul
When Shaq was young, he often went along with the crowd.  His father told him, "Be a leader Shaq, not a follower.  Since people already have to look up to you, give them a good reason to do so."  Mr. O'Neal shows responsibility by trying his best to follow his father's advice.  
(story can be found at

1. Brainstorm responsible behavior.  The next day call roll and have children answer: I am responsible when I...

2. Is it the responsibility of an athlete to act as a role model since they are in the public eye, or should they be able to live their life as they want, even if they are being irresponsible.  
What are the consequences of being irresponsible.

3. Give each child an envelope and tell them they will need the envelope at school tomorrow (you can make it for a longer period of time).  It is their responsibility to keep the envelope safe and not to open the envelope.  The next day tell those who have the envelope unopened, that they can now open their envelope.  Inside is a note saying: Thank you for being responsible.  You can have ____ minutes of free time on ___.

4. Write five things to say to yourself if you are tempted to act irresponsibly.  

5. Describe something you have done that is responsible, and how you felt afterwards.  
Did you learn from it?

6. Describe what society might be like if no one was accountable for their actions.  What would happen if no one kept their promises or commitments.

Clifford The Small Red Puppy

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Simon Says & Beep Beep; Same and Different 5

Every child is unique and different.  Most children want to be treated as an individual at home, but at school want to be the same as everyone else.  It's a Paradox!  When we value ourselves, we can come to appreciate the values of others, even when they are culturally very different than we are.  And, in learning about other people, we can find common ground and see how we are alike.n the
 same we do nohave to arrive to the same place
Simon Says    
The game shows that some children are the same because they both have dogs, or brown hair, and some children are different because they all do not have cats, or blond hair.  After the game you can continue by asking if anyone remembers you who had dogs...  Have children name a child with a dog.  Etc…

Children sit in chairs or stand in a circle.  Explain that they are to respond if they have what Simon Says:
Simon Says clap if you have brown eyes.
Simon Says touch your knees if you have a dog.
Simon Says march if you have blond hair.
Simon says put your arms up in the air if you have a cat.
Simon says cross your arms if you are a boy.
Simon says wave your hands if you are a girl.
Simon says wiggle your fingers if you have brown hair.

Beep Beep
A car needs all of its many different parts to make a whole automobile that will run.  Many of the  parts are very different from each other, but they come together to make a whole car and are working toward the same purpose of making the car run.

Print out the car parts; you will need to copy 1 steering wheel, 1 engine, 2 headlights, and 4 tires.  Hole punch two holes at the top of the sign and attach yarn so the sign can be worn.  Select eight helpers and give each person a car part to wear.  Ask your helpers to come together and stand or sit where their car part should go. 

Let your helpers know that when you start the car, they will mimic their car part.  Headlights can open and close fingers, steering wheel can turn back and forth, engine can vibrate, and the tires can have the bottom half of one arm moving in a circle.  Shut the car off and ask what will happen if the headlights are taken away.  Then, ask what happens without the steering wheel, etc...

Now compare the many different car parts that come together to make one whole car, to the members of a family, classroom, or troop.  The members of a family, classroom, or troop are all individual and different, but every person is needed to make the group a whole.    


Saturday, July 7, 2012

Reacting to Disrespect & Think and Ask with Solving A Problem; Conflict Resolution 5

Reacting to Disrespect
At times children use disrespectful remarks, gestures and actions toward other children, their parents, teachers and other adults.  This can lead to verbal retaliation, which can also lead to fights.  The disrespect is usually done on purpose in order to upset others and to get a reaction from them.  Serious problems can occur that results in anger and aggression between people.  Ignore the disrespect in a non-confrontational manner; non-combative manner.  Even if the disrespect is a part of an angry outburst, you can learn to handle the situation in a way that prevents escalation of the matter.  Keep your cool when faced with disrespect.

Mini Story
Robert, who is larger than the other children in his grade, is hanging around the school gate before school starts.  Ernest is walking towards the gate, and comes face to face with Robert.  Robert steps in front of Ernest and says sarcastically, "Errrrr-Nessst, did your mommy pick out your clothes!"  Ernest is tired of being teased because of his name.  The kids are constantly teasing him about his name because they think it's a sissy name.  Ernest has had enough and is ready to give back what he has been put through.  He clenches his fists and opens his mouth to speak.

Think About It
1. How did Robert show disrespect to Ernest?
2. What did Robert want to happen?
3. What do you think Ernest will say or do?
4. What could happen as a result of what Ernest says or does?
5. Is there anything Ernest could do to handle his reaction that will prevent verbal or physical actions.

Think and Ask Yourself
Solving A Problem
Go over Think and Ask yourself, and Solving a Problem.  Scroll down to find roll plays and act out following the guidelines of the chart.  Parent/teacher demonstrates the first role play.


Role Play Rules: Adult decides skit.  Absolutely NO negative comments or inappropriate laughter from the audience.  After skit is over, others clap.

1. Your child/student comes in the room and address's you, "Hey dude what's goin on."  The child/student has already been warned in the past not to address you in this manner.

2. When nervous Amanda stutters.  When Amanda starts to stutter, Kimberly starts to mimic her and then the rest of the children laugh.

3. Jacob had been very sick, and when he returned to school he was not able to play active games.  As the boys were playing soccer, Jacob stood on the sideline and watched.  Every time the boys got close to Jacob, they called him a baby since he couldn't play.

4. Lori is a very smart girl and tries hard, but because she learns differently than the rest of the children, she struggles with school work.  Because Lori goes to the resource room for help, Nick calls her a retard.