Activity 3: My Feelings

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Appropriately identifying and expressing emotions and feelings helps children get along better with others. Learning the appropriate words to express their feelings and to solve problems is a key to succeeding in kindergarten.

Friends & Family: Activity 3

hanginBenefits for Your Child:

  • Identifies own feelings and emotions
  • Expresses emotions and feelings verbally and through the arts
  • Develops self-control of impulses and feelings

Appropriately identifying and expressing emotions and feelings helps children get along better with others. When children express their emotions and feelings verbally or through the arts, they are developing healthy social skills. Learning the appropriate words to express their feelings and to solve problems are the keys to succeeding in kindergarten. Young children learn a valuable skill by talking about their feelings.

Kindergarten Connection tooltip

Kindergarten teachers expect children to express their feelings appropriately. Children will use words to express their emotions and feelings instead of suppressing them or striking out.

Activity: Feelings Puppets

Sing “If You’re Happy and You Know It”:

If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands (clap, clap)
If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands (clap, clap)
If you’re happy and you know it, then your face will surely show it,
If you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands (clap, clap)

Substitute other emotions and actions for “happy” and “clap.” Talk to your child about what makes him/her feel happy, sad, angry, or scared. Using the materials, create puppets that show different facial expressions. As your child works, talk about the puppets’ expressions and feelings and about a time when he/she may have felt the same way. Teach him/her appropriate ways to communicate how he/she is feeling.

Materials:

  • Paper plates, lunch bags, socks
  • Crayons, markers, yarn bits, buttons, stickers, scrap materials from around the house
  • Glue
  • Scissors

More Ideas:

  • Use the puppets to create a puppet show and talk with your child.
  • Use the puppets to empathize with your child (for example, use the sad puppet to talk with your child when he/she is sad).
  • Use art as a way for your child to express emotions or feelings. Draw, paint, dance, or mold play-dough.

Tips:

  • Have a mirror available for your child to look at as he/she makes different facial expressions. Say, “Show me a ______ (happy, sad, etc.) face.”
  • If your child will not talk to you about how he/she is feeling, talk about your feelings. Model how to express feelings appropriately.
  • When your child is crying, bring a mirror to look at the face he/she is making.
  • Some children have difficulty interpreting other people’s expressions. Make a face and have your child guess what you are feeling and how he/she should respond.

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Books: My Feelings

The Way I Feel by Janan Cain. This rhyming book explores a child's emotions.

When Sophie Gets Angry, Really Really Angry
by Molly Bang. A young girl is upset and doesn't know how to manage her anger.

Grouchy Ladybug
by Eric Carle. A grouchy ladybug challenges everyone she meets.

Today I Feel Silly
by Jamie Lee Curtis. Everyone has moods that can change each day.

 

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