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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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December 27th, 2011

A Resilient Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer is a classic story beloved by children and adults all across the world. It’s also a story about being bullied, taunted and teased, and triumphing in the end.

Many children identify with Rudolph. Most kids have been laughed at or made fun of by other children at some point in their lives. Some kids are targets of chronic bullying. Roughly 10-15% of today’s kids are the victims of severe bullying. Our friend Rudolph undoubtedly falls into that category. Another 10-15% of kids today do the bullying. Many of Rudolph’s fellow reindeers taunted and teased him relentlessly.

Rudolph manged to handle the bullying, staying strong and resilient. In the famous story, something magical and deserving happens. Rudolph saves the day by steering the reindeers one stormy night. His red-nose, once the object of scorn, now saves the day.
Rudolph remains an enduring model of resilience, which is but one of the many reasons that the story is so compelling.

If you have a child who begins to doubt herself or question his strengths because of criticism from others, you can help the child be more confident and strong. The Finding Your Hidden Treasures tool from the Charge Up Your ConfidenceĀ® Tool Kit for Kids is one of 20 tools that helps kids recognize and value their positive qualities. Just like Rudolph, all children have unique attributes that make them shine.

December 7th, 2011

When A Sibling Dies

How do parents tell their child that a beloved brother or sister is dying? Most parents never have to face such a tragedy, but sadly some do. It’s never easy and it’s often complicated.

The whole family is in turmoil when a child has died or will be dying soon. Telling the surviving child some of the truth in an age appropriate way may be the hardest conversation parents will ever have with their child. It must be done with the utmost tenderness, the utmost respect. Be prepared for questions as time goes by. Here are a few of the questions a sibling may express.

Why did this happen? How come it didn’t happen to me?
I’ve always wrestled with my brother. Who can I do that with now?
Who will I play with? Who will I fight with?
Was this my fault?
Can you have another baby? I need another sister.

While discussing the loss of a child, it’s important to stress that the child who died will always be an important part of the family. There can’t be a replacement. You could say, You can always remember and love your brother/sister forever.

Surviving siblings have a tough road ahead. Children have to integrate the loss into their lives. It’s particularly difficult because moms, dads, grandparents and extended family are grieving too. There are grieving groups, weekend grief camps and professionals who can help the child and family deal with the loss.

There is another resource to help brave siblings deal with the loss of a brother or sister. The Build Up Your Resilience Tool Kit for Kidsā„¢ helps children and teens learn strategies to heal and get stronger, while they are walking through the grief process. Very often siblings have very intense feelings after a loss such as guilt, deep sadness, anger, fear and anxiety. The resilience tools help manage these feelings carefully. Siblings learn how to keep their self-esteem intact, deal with frightening dreams and images, develop a longer term perspective about their future and retain a sense of hopefulness. Kids can keep the Tool Kit right next to them in their bedroom and review the resilience tools whenever they need to feel better.