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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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November 22nd, 2010

Helping Bereaved Children During the Holiday Season

Thanksgiving and Christmas are favorite holidays for many children and teens. The holiday season begins in early November and doesn’t wind down until after New Year’s. It is a joyous time for many, but for children coping with loss, perhaps the death of a parent, sibling, grandparent, or pet, the holiday season can be a difficult time filled with sadness and emotional trauma. Divorce, separation from family members, or moving away from close friends can also make the Happy Holidays much less happy. During a holiday season which focuses on togetherness, absence of a loved one grows even more painful.

Dealing with grief in children and teens is difficult. How do you help a young person who has suffered a major loss? Many people feel that time heals, and it does help, but resilience skills are essential to help kids cope with loss. Most adults are unfamiliar with resilience skills for children ….they are unsure what to say or what parent-child activities will help.

Resilience skills can be learned and bereaved children need resilience to get though the holiday season. The Build Up Your Resilience™Tool Kit for Kits has twenty thinking and behavior skills specifically designed to help young people K-12 deal with emotional trauma including grief and separation from loved ones. Tools such as It’s Not a Difficult Forever, No More What’s Next, and Still, help young people learn to bounce back from the emotional trauma of the loss of a loved one. For younger children who are bereaved, the skills can be learned in an interactive fashion, with the help of an adult. Older children and teens may prefer to learn the skills more privately.

Death, divorce, or separation is a traumatic stress for a young person and the holiday season brings a greater sting to the loss. Resilience skills can help. Try the Build Up Your Resilience Tool Kit for Kids™ and help children coping with loss to find smart and strong ways to navigate their way through this holiday season.

November 11th, 2010

Afraid of Giving School Presentations: Three Steps to Help Kids with Public Speaking Anxiety

Anxiety about public speaking can start in the early grades and last through the middle and high school years and beyond. Just the thought of standing in front of a class and giving a presentation can trigger anxiety in children. Sweaty palms, pounding heartbeat, fear of embarrassment, and loss of focus are only some of the signs related to fear of school presentations.

Parents and concerned adults can help. Step 1 is to encourage the child to research the topic thoroughly and prepare a good report. Step 2 is to practice, and do lots of it. Not everyone is a natural speaker, and it can take a long time for a child to acquire public speaking skills. The child can practice alone, in front of a mirror, or give the presentation to family members. Technology can help too, and the child may benefit from recording the presentation as a means of practice.

Sometimes preparation and practice are not enough to calm the nerves of kids and teens who worry about an upcoming oral report. There are two sets of emotional
skills that can come to the rescue – reducing anxiety and building self-confidence. That’s step 3.

Anti-anxiety activities and children’s self-esteem boosting strategies can be learned. Tool Kits for Kids provides powerful, award-winning solutions to help kids. The Outsmart Your Worry Tool Kit for Kids® quickly shows young people in grades K-12 how to stop fears from escalating, relax their minds and bodies,stop what if thinking, and prevent anxious thoughts from taking over. The Charge Up Your Confidence® Tool Kit helps young people handle mistakes, deal with criticism from others, stop their own negative thoughts, and focus on their positive attributes.

Remember theses three steps to help your child face his or her next oral report and the many other school presentations to come. Step 1 is preparation. Step 2 is practice. Step 3 is the Tool Kit solution to help manage fear and build self confidence.

November 7th, 2010

EVENTS

Tool Kits for Kids® was proudly featured in an exhibit at The New York State School Counselor Association (NYSSCA) Annual Conference on November 5th and 6th in Tarrytown, NY.

November 5th, 2010

No One To Sit With At Lunch

If you are in Middle School or High School, you know what a big deal it is to eat alone in the cafeteria. There are lots of different reasons why you may not feel comfortable at lunchtime. Maybe there has been a shift in your friendships. You could be picking up subtle signs that you are no longer welcome at your old table. Perhaps you have just transferred to a new school and don’t know anyone yet.

Even if it feels awkward, it’s a good idea to discuss your feelings about your personal lunchtime situation with an adult, such as a parent, another family member, or a teacher or counselor in your school. Together, you can come up with a plan to determine whom you might feel comfortable with and where you would like to sit. It may be tough at first, but when you’re ready, you will have to take that bold step of initiating a brief conversation, or sitting at a table with an empty seat.

To help you get ready and follow through with a plan, you need confidence. Confidence helps young people try new things, adapt to change, recognize their strengths, and handle criticism, embarrassment, and imperfection. That’s just what’s needed to break into a new social group and find a place that feels right at lunchtime.

There is a way to bolster your self-esteem. The Charge Up Your Confidence Tool Kit for Kids can quickly help you feel better about yourself and help your confidence grow stronger. You will learn 20 powerful strategies in just a week. This is the secret ingredient needed to help you make new friends at school.

Discuss the Charge Up Your Confidence Tool Kit with your parents. The Tool Kit has won national awards because the tools are effective, clear, and easy to learn. There is an edition of the Tool Kit designed especially for young people in high school and middle school. Confidence skills can help you change your lunchtime situation and feel happier and more relaxed at a very important part of your day.