Relaxation Tools for Kids
© 2012 Deanne Carter, LMHC, NCC
to increase awareness of thoughts, emotions, or physical body sensations that come before the symptoms of stress. Helps get to the root of the problem.
- Everyday Blessings: The inner work of mindful parenting, Myla Kabat-Zinn and Jon Kabat-Zinn
Each Breath A Smile, Thi Hop and Dong
2. Positive Thinking:
thought tracking to free from negative thinking.
- Mind Coach, Dr. Daniel Amen
- You Are Not Your Thoughts, Brian Despard
- The Kid's Guide To Social Action: How To Solve The Social Problems You Choose--And Turn Creative Thinking Into Positive Action, Barbara A. Lewis
The Optimistic Child: A Proven Program to Safeguard Children against Depression and Build Lifelong Resilience, Martin Seligman
3. Books that build skills and inspire.
- Don’t Pop Your Cork on Mondays, Adolph Moser (series)
- What to do when… (worry, sleep problems, anger, negativity, etc), Dawn Huebner (series)
- Facing Fear Without Freaking Out, Trevor Romain (series)
- I Believe in Me: A Book of Affirmations, Connie Brown
- Let's Be Friends: A Workbook to Help Kids Learn Social Skills & Make Great Friends by Lawrence E. Shapiro
- Raise Your Child’s Social IQ, Cathi Cohen
Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child: The Heart of Parenting, John Gottman
4. Create relaxation rituals:
Ex. Bedtime bath, soft blanket, affirmations book or write one thing you are grateful of today, lavender pillow, music, etc.
- Indigo Dreams: Relaxation and Stress Management Bedtime Stories for Children, Improve Sleep, Manage Stress and Anxiety by Lori Lite
- The Most Soothing Lullabies in the Universe CD
- Starbright: Meditations for Children, Maureen Garth
The Relaxation & Stress Reduction Workbook for Kids: Help for Children to Cope with Stress, Anxiety & Transitions, Lawrence Shapiro
5. Give kids tools for expression of emotions:
Ex. anger – you may scream in a pillow, hit a pillow while you are in your room, stomp on the basement floor, squeeze/release your feet or your whole body, dance, take deep breathes; sad – ask for a hug, pet the dog, snuggle your blanket, draw, write, talk
- Building Emotional Intelligence: Techniques to Cultivate Inner Strength in Children, Linda Lantieri and Daniel Goleman
- Raising An Emotionally Intelligent Child The Heart of Parenting, Ph.D. John Gottman, Joan Declaire and Daniel Goleman
Don’t Rant & Rave on Wednesdays, Adolph Moser (series)
6. Yoga Awareness /Physical Release of Stress
- Yoga Calm for Children: Educating Heart, Mind, and Body, Lynea and Jim Gillen
- Storyland Yoga: Interactive Family Fun (ages 3 to 8), Ahmed Fahmy
Thera-Flex Therapy Putty - 1 lb by Thera-Flex
7. Relaxation CDs:
teaching self-soothing to reduce the need for movement/chatter to soothe, or adrenaline rushing activities like pushing people’s buttons.
- Rainbows and Sunshine, Airy Melody Music (ages 6-11)
- Indigo Ocean Dreams: 4 Children's Stories Designed to Decrease Stress, Anger and Anxiety while Increasing Self-Esteem and Self-Awareness
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