Growing up is tough business.
Mom is always telling you “no.” Chores are the absolute worst. Sharing is just plain unfair!
Navigating the world comes with big emotions that can be hard for kids to cope with. If you’ve endured the Terrible Twos, Terribles Threes, Terrible Fours, Dramatic Fives, and so on, you know what we mean.
Luckily, many parents are becoming more in tune with kids’ emotional needs, responding to their challenges with developmental understanding. There are some incredible brands out there that have made it their mission to help parents do just this.
Some of our very favorites make self-awareness and talking about emotions fun–and adorable! You’ll understand what we mean soon enough.
Animal Chat Emotion Activity Cards
Take one look at the art on these cards and we’re sure you’ll be as obsessed as we are.
These emotion activity cards are made by Betsy Petersen’s brand Big Feelings and they are undoubtedly helping many parents navigate big emotions with their kids. Just read some of these Amazon reviews! Multiple moms share that these cards helped their kids talk through some tough stuff.
Thirty emotion cards and a handful of fun game ideas make this deck both insightful and fun.
These cards are large and sturdy because their makers know what tiny hands are capable of. Plus, you can get them shipped for free with Amazon Prime. Need we say more?
Slumberkins | Emotional Learning Resources
Slumberkins was founded by a special education teacher and a family therapist who wanted to bring effective early emotional learning tools into as many homes and schools as possible. Explore their collection of books and resources, then meet the creatures who are helping children learn healthy attachments and positive beliefs about themselves and the world.
Each creature in the Slumberkins collection is paired with emotional skills. Bigfoot is all about confidence-building while the Alpaca promotes the importance of stress relief. These super soft loveys come with a board book and affirmation cards.
The Slumberkins team is passionate about more families understanding that “noticing, naming, and welcoming our feelings impacts our choices and behaviors, and we believe unlocking these skills individually is the key to coming together collectively.”
These are stuffed animals any parent can get behind!
Present Not Perfect | Sensory Kits
The creators of these kits are busy moms who trudged through the pandemic–like all of us! While they were knocked down by the chaos of life, they thought of all the other parents experiencing the same anxieties they were.
That’s when Calm Kits were born. They wanted to find a way to help families channel tough emotions into positive activities and conversations. These kits help kids transfer their anxieties into activities with hands-on, sensory play. Whether your child loves unicorns, construction vehicles, or bugs, there’s a sensory kit just for them.
Each kit includes a unique “emotional literacy line.” For example, the Safari Sensory Kit is focused on being present. This concept is taught through a kid-friendly message and these extras: discussion topics, activities, and art prompts.
These sensory kits are the perfect cool down activity. They create calm by keeping your child busy. It’s in those calm moments you can have productive conversations about their feelings or try an emotions exercise from the sensory kit’s prompts.
Calm Down Corner Kit
We’re big believers that every house needs a quiet corner–somewhere you can go when tensions are high whether you’re 7 or 37. This set of 100 prints on Etsy is the perfect addition to that corner. Some of the prints can become wall art while the others are in-hand self-awareness activities.
The posters teach self-regulation and calming strategies while adding the perfect boho vibe to your space. The emotions cards will help your children learn the full spectrum of emotions they feel on a daily basis and be able to identify emotions as they feel them.
Bounce Worries Away
Big emotions are often combatted best with big movement. If a quiet corner doesn’t do the trick for your kids, go to the opposite end of the spectrum and help him expend some of that emotional energy.
Intense exercise is highly effective in helping kids calm their bodies, according to an article by McLean hospital.
“Have your child engage in five minutes … like push-ups, jumping jacks, mountain climbers, or burpees,” it states.
We’d like to add jumping to the list! While Smol bounce houses fuel kids’ imaginations and test their physical abilities, they’re also a smart emotional tool parents can use regularly. Once their bodies are exhausted from jumping, your kids will more easily be able to talk through their feelings.
Dealing with your littles’ big emotions is an exhausting part of every parent’s daily routine. However, parents with a plan, and brilliant activities and resources in their back pockets, may end their days feeling less overwhelmed themselves. Try these products and ideas and let us know how it goes!