What are some positive coping skill exercises to use with children?


Quick Answer

Positive coping skill exercises to use with children include helping youth put their feelings into words by labeling feelings such as anger, happiness or sadness in potential situations they face. Adults can also help children identify triggers that prompt these feelings such as when a friend says something hurtful or they are not allowed to play a game.

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Full Answer

Additional exercises include helping children make lists of activities that calm them down when they are upset. A child who identifies that reading a book when angry helps subsides intense feelings can better cope with the angry emotions. Parents and adults can also lead a brainstorming activity that prompts children to think about how they can cope when upset. Parents can lead children through phrases such as "When I'm angry with my sister, I can ..." that prompt them to finish the sentence with a coping activity.

Activities that focus on teaching coping skills prompt adults to listen intently and identify cues when a child is unable to cope. A child who blows up immediately when upset may need to engage in exercises that identify emotions more than a child who holds anger in for a long time, who may benefit from exercises that focus on expressing feelings.

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