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Our creative team is always developing and discovering new tools and activities for children and teens to master the everyday emotional challenges of their lives. Check back often to see what's new and how you can help your child.

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June 26th, 2010

Facing Fears in A Way That’s Fun and Really Works

Summer is here and with all that pressure-free time, it may be surprising that many children’s fears are back in full force. Some children worry about upcoming shots at the pediatrician’s office. Others may be afraid of bees or flying insects at the athletic field. Some kids hate summer storms and get frightened as skies darken. Some youngsters are afraid of the water and constantly protest about swimming lessons. There are kids that dread the family vacation because flying in a plane makes them really uneasy.

Overcoming childhood fears is a part of growing up. Many families want strategies and tools to help children and teens deal with fears quickly and effectively. Just telling your child, You have to face your fears, is not enough. There has to be a sound plan that makes sense to the child and builds lasting skills in an empowering way.

There is such a plan now available that can work and is appealing to children at the same time. The plan is called The Outsmart Your Worry Tool Kit for Kids. The Tool Kit contains 20 powerful tools and activities for children and teens to fight worry and diminish anxiety in children. It is designed for all kids in grades K-12, not just nervous children and kids, because fear is a common occurrence.

The Outsmart Your Worry Tool Kit teaches children skills to immediately stop fear from growing, help children use strong and accurate thoughts, stop constant worry about fears that usually never happen, make powerful rules to control worry, and use mind and body relaxation strategies. All of these anti-anxiety activities can start working right away to prevent kids and teens worry from interfering with summer fun. Now you can tell your child, It’s important to face your fears and we have a plan to help.

June 16th, 2010

The Gulf Oil Disaster Images Hurt Kids

Children have been bombarded with horrific images of the Gulf oil disaster. Pelicans covered in oil, tar balls rolling in with the waves, and beaches turning dark with oil are only a few of the heartbreaking pictures of the greatest environmental disaster in U.S. history. Anxiety in children grows as they see these potent images day after day.

Kids and teens worry about what will happen next and may express some of these legitimate concerns: Will the animals die? Will the oil come to where I live or visit? What will happen to the fish? Is it dangerous? Will grown-ups be able to fix this?

Parents want to know how to help their children cope with the emotional trauma of the Gulf oil disaster. There is a new approach to teaching children skills which can strengthen them when dealing with stress of trauma and loss, such as this latest American tragedy. The skills that can help young people cope are called resilience skills, and there are 20 of these powerful skills in the award-winning Build UpYour Resilience Tool Kit for Kids™. The Tool Kit teaches children and teens in grades K-12 strategies to deal with anxiety about their future, cope with change and loss, lessen the power of scary images, manage their worries about grown-ups, and handle feelings of sadness, fear, and anger.

There are two editions of the Resilience Tool Kit. The Elementary School Edition for ages 5-11 is an interactive experience between children and their parents or other adults. Children benefit greatly when an adult learns resilience tools too. Clearly, the Gulf oil disaster has had an enormous impact on adults as well as entire communities. Adults can benefit too from learning resilience tools, as they help guide the child. The High School/Middle School Edition of the Resilience Tool Kit for ages 11-18 is more sophisticated, and designed to address the specific needs of this older age group. Children and teens directly affected by the Gulf Oil Disaster, as well as young people anxious about its impact can learn to navigate this latest challenge in a strong and hopeful manner.

June 6th, 2010

Rumors: Building Confidence Helps Kids Handle Them

If your child has had a rumor spread about him or her, you know how devastating that can feel. Today, with technology at kids’ fingertips, rumors can spread quickly and get further distorted in nanoseconds. Rumors are often experienced as a blow to children’s self-esteem, even if there is no truth to them whatsoever.

Parents and family can be a big support to children when they are sent into a rumor tailspin. It’s a good idea to help your child under- respond when a rumor takes hold and to remind your child of his or her strengths. Pay attention to your child’s confidence level, which can often dip during this time. Sometimes a rumor can especially sting because the child may wonder if it started as a betrayal from a friend.

The origins of rumors are sometimes hard to trace. What is important is to learn confidence activities and tools to protect kids’ self-esteem from further damage.

Building self-confidence skills can help buffer kids from getting out of control when faced with cruel and embarrassing rumors. The Charge Up your Confidence Tool Kit for Kids helps children in grades K-12 keep confidence steady and strong. The Tool Kit includes activities for children and teens to handle criticism, focus on one’s positive attributes, deal with imperfection and embarrassment, pay attention to one’s own views and opinions, learn from mistakes, and block negative self-defeating thoughts. These important child confidence skills are needed to weather the storm of nasty rumors.