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How to teach feeling and emotions: Free activity

We are going to chat about emotions and feelings today on the site. It is important to understand and teach feeling and emotional awareness to our kids. The sooner they learn to name, and understand what it is that they are feeling inside their bodies, the easier it become to express their emotions effectively. Talking about feelings as a child, and into adulthood is a very important part of creating a positive approach to mental health.

We have an activity for you to use to explore feelings, and emotions that your children will find really helpful.

The details for this activity are included within the full information taken from the amazing book by Manisha Taylor that

50 Wellbeing Lessons
by Manisha Taylor

We are featuring on the site a few activities from this book: 50 Wellbeing Lessons for the Diverse Primary Classroom.

After her twin brother was diagnosed with Schizophrenia at 18, Manisha has used her considerable skills to help support mental health awareness in Children, and runs Swaggarlicious. Here, she provides mental health support through her training as a full time professional football coach.

We have a few of the activities from the book on the site – so do check them all out.

We also have a mindfulness section on the site as well; with loads more ideas for kids, as well as an 8 article series on supporting mental health in kids from another guest author too.

Every little helps our kids, so keep coming back to KiddyCharts for more details where you can get them.

Why both to help teach feeling and emotion to our kids?

Throughout life, kids and adults will experience a range of different emotions and feelings depending on what they are going through. It is important for our kids to understand that their emotional state can effect how they behave as well as how they think.

In addition, their emotions and feelings have a big impact on how they express their feeling to others as well.

It is important that children know that the way they are feeling is valid, and that there are a number of socially acceptable ways of expressing those feelings that they have. Understanding what is socially acceptable will be vital in helping kids to express some of the big feelings that they will have, and to help them cope with them too.

What does this activity help kids to learn?

The outcomes for learning in this activity are quite simple, but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t incredibly important. They cover:

  • Recognising and responding to a wide range of feelings,
  • Understanding good, and not so good feelings and emotions, and the language that is associated with them as well,
  • Understanding that people experience conflicting emotions, and that doing so is OK,
  • Talk about how your kids might react in specific situations, and what emotions and feelings are present to create those reactions.

How to teach feeling and emotions with this activity

In order to do this activity:

  • Explain to your kids that you are going to chat about feelings,
  • Ask them what feelings mean to them, and get them to talk about some of their own feelings. These feelings may start as small in a specific situation, and then develop into something bigger. This depends on both the situation and the individual child as well,
  • Give examples, and get your children to chat about how they might feel in different situations,
  • Use the feelings cards (covering both big and small feelings) and the questions below to create discussion with your kids,
  • Get them to think about their response to the situations and the feelings after the examples provided, and the impact on themselves and others.

Questions to think about

Here are some thoughts for discussion when you are doing the activity:

  • Can you think of an example when you have felt this way? (Use the feelings cards to give examples),
  • Did you reaction affect others? If so, how?
  • What would you do to help someone manage their sad feelings?
  • What are the benefits of managing sad feelings?
  • How do you manage the big feelings?

Check out our feelings cards to help teach feeling and emotions

Use these feelings cards to open the discussion with your kids about different feelings and emotions.

When have the kids experienced these feelings?

How did it affect them?

How did it affect others?

How have they helped people that they have known overcome some of their feelings, or cope with them better, e.g. nervous, sad, etc

Which of these are big feelings? Which are small feelings?

Which of these are the good, and which the not so good feeling?

These cards are incredibly helpful for helping kids start to talk, and to make the activity effective.

If you would like to download the entire information including activity guidelines, feel free, but to just download the feelings cards, click on the button below.

We hope that you like this activity, we have loads more activities for kids on feelings and emotions, including this mental health is important activity to help kids to understand what mental health and wellbeing is all about. Check out some other ideas here:

Here are some other ideas to help children to understand and cope with their feelings and emotions.

Here are more mindful activities offsite:

Mindful activities for kids from other sites

Here are a few more ideas for you about mindful activities that your kids can do today.

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Thanks as always for coming along to see us, and come back soon.


Helen is a mum to two, social media consultant, and website editor; and this site is (we think) the only Social Enterprise parenting magazine! Since giving up being a business analyst when juggling travel, work and kids proved too complicated, she founded KiddyCharts so she could be with her kids, and use those grey cells at the same time. KiddyCharts has reach of over 1.1million across social and the site. The blog works with big family brands (including travel) to help promote their services, as well as offering free resources to parents of kids under 10. It gives 51%+ profits to Reverence for Life, who fund a number of important initiatives in Africa, including bringing running water and basic equipment to a school in Tanzania. Helen has worked as a digital marketing consultant (IDM qualified) with various organisations, including Channel Mum, Truprint, Talk to Mums, and Micro Scooters. She loves to be creative in the brand campaigns she works on. Get in touch TODAY!

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