After-school workshops for kids that provide age-appropriate info, meaningful practice with essential social-emotional skills, and an opportunity to connect with peers. Rachel Lotus’s progressive curriculum embraces a broader understanding of sexuality education, going far beyond the basics of traditional sex ed, and reflects the realities of today’s world. The Talk also offers support to parents on a range of issues with a focus on normalizing sexuality and providing tools to navigate difficult, often awkward conversations.
SEL Home » Resources with tag: SEL
Videos galore on a range of sexuality-related subjects. AMAZE.org a collaboration of several highly regarded organizations, including Advocates for Youth and Answer. Not every video is appropriate for every age, so they tag each with an age guide to help steer parents and educators.
When his mother dies, a little boy reacts honestly to his profound loss in this poignant snapshot of grief. The boy candidly describes his loss and concern for his grieving father with heartfelt immediacy. Simple illustrations stress the boy’s distress and isolation while powerfully conveying his progression from anger and fear to sadness and acceptance. “An invaluable resource for adults who need to understand what grief means to a child-and perhaps for a grieving child, as a roadmap through it.”
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
A stunning debut about one girl’s journey through loss and grief. Corinna’s world is crushed after her mother dies of cancer. How does she get through the funeral, trays of ziti, a father who can’t communicate, the first day of school, Mother’s Day, people who don’t know what to say, and the entire eighth-grade year? The emotional power of If Only is informed by Carole’s more than twenty years of experience as a clinical social worker, working with scores of children who have had a parent die, as well as adults whose childhoods were shaped by parent loss.
As all the other leaves float off and fly past, Little Yellow Leaf thinks, I’m not ready yet. As the seasons change all around, Little Yellow Leaf holds on to the tree. Still not ready. Will Little Yellow Leaf ever be ready? This is a story about facing the unknown—and about friends who help us take the leap. It is not specifically about the process of dying, but provides a beautiful setup for discussing the process a terminally ill parent or grandparent might go through, and a good jumping off point for talking about facing that unknown.
“This beautiful book asks all the right questions to help young children become aware of the eternal bonds that live on after death, while wisely leaving the answers to the readers themselves. A book to ponder, to discuss, and to cherish.” —R. J. Palacio, author of Wonder
“She’s in a better place now,” adults say again and again. But mortality doesn’t seem better, it seems stupid. This forthright exploration of grief and mourning recognizes the anger, confusion, and fear that we feel about death. Necessary, beautiful, and ultimately reassuring, Death Is Stupid is an invaluable tool for discussing death, but also the possibilities for celebrating life and love.
From the perspective of a young child, Joanna Rowland artfully describes what it is like to remember and grieve a loved one who has died. The child in the story creates a memory box to keep mementos and written memories of the loved one, to help in the grieving process. Heartfelt and comforting, The Memory Box will help children and adults talk about this very difficult topic together. The unique point of view allows the reader to imagine the loss of any they have loved – a friend, family member, or even a pet. A parent guide in the back includes information on helping children manage the complex and difficult emotions they feel when they lose someone they love, as well as suggestions on how to create their own memory box.
Unusual and visually compelling picture book from an author who tackles other sensitive topics with similar aplomb and grace (she has books on death, divorce and race, too). Written in a voice that honors the kinds of real thoughts and questions kids actually have.
Full of eye-catching graphics and simple text, this wonderful book is inclusive and far-reaching, drawing readers in by exploring bodies, gender, safety, and sexuality. Not terribly graphic, it deals with sexuality as an expansive concept, while still providing plenty of thought-provoking conversation starters. It’s a book an older child can explore independently, but works even better when read together.
This funny viral video uses various tea-based scenarios to illustrate the nuances of consent for tweens and teens. Somewhat reductive in its metaphor, it is nevertheless amusing and relatable to most adolescents. Great way to start a conversation about the more unsettling aspects of sexual consent.
Howard Gardner has identified seven distinct intelligences. This theory has emerged from recent cognitive research and “documents the extent to which students possess different kinds of minds and therefore learn, remember, perform, and understand in different ways.”
Every December a 321 teacher gives her students $1 and tells them they have to come up with create ways to spread as much kindness with $1 as possible (without combining funds). Examples of things students have done: Turned the $1 into 100 pennies and put them near a fountain with a sign to make a holiday wish, buy a poster board and make a sign offering to carry groceries, buy a poster and make a sign collecting money for a homeless man, collecting $40, presenting it to him and hugging him when he hugged her, cut pine branches off a tree, bought a $1 bow and made a wreath leaving it anonymously on a neighbor’s door, another student donated the dollar to a charity, but emailed his parents’ contact list saying that he did it and hoped that would also donate (I think the charity ended up getting $400), the list goes on and on. Why not do a $1 act of kindness every month?
Willard uses the sciences of genetics, behavior, neuroscience, psychology, and social contagions to explain how kindness leads to happiness, and happiness leads to creativity and finding new perspectives and opportunities. (13:35 minutes)
“A sweetness in the images and the text elevates the book from sheer simplicity to usefulness in providing behavioral role models.” —Kirkus Reviews
Amos McGee, an elderly man who works at the zoo, finds time each day for five special friends. With empathy and understanding he gives the elephant, tortoise, penguin, rhinoceros, and owl the attention they need. One morning, Amos wakes up with a bad cold and stays home in bed. His friends wait patiently and then leave the zoo to visit him.
“Peace is an Offering is an exceptional book with beautiful illustrations and a meaningful message that appeals to preschool through second grade level students. The book captivated students’ interests and inspired open-hearted discussions that led to deeper project work. Students readily responded by talking about family, friends, walking away from conflict, acts of kindness, gratitude, and how to maintain a peaceful feeling. We read several books aloud to students, and Peace is an Offering received immediate comments from students about the illustrations and how much they like the book overall. This book should be in every lower grade level classroom.” Makes a mention of 9/11.
More than ever before, our world needs more goodness…more kindness… more caring…more courage…more YOU in it. But, what can one do? Here’s the answer: Throughout your life there’s a voice that only you can hear. It’s a call to make a difference that only you can make. If you never hear it, something magical will be lost. But if you hear it and heed it, your life will become a wonderful romance and adventure. The purpose of life is to discover your gift. The meaning of life is to give your gift away. The place you are in needs you today. Your spark can become a flame and change everything. Instead of asking, “What can I get from life?” this book challenges and guides you to answer the question, “What can I give?”
Every Sunday after church, CJ and his grandma ride the bus across town. But today, CJ wonders why they don’t own a car like his friend Colby. Why doesn’t he have an iPod like the boys on the bus? How come they always have to get off in the dirty part of town? Each question is met with an encouraging answer from grandma, who helps him see the beauty—and fun—in their routine and the world around them.
As budding young readers learn about numbers and counting, they are also introduced to accepting different body types, developing social skills and character, and learning what it means to find value in yourself and in others.
Miller explores the topic of kindness through the story of a child pondering how to respond when a friend spills grape juice on herself. In the language of a child’s thoughts, Miller provides examples of kindness (giving, helping, paying attention), and acknowledges that it is not always easy to be kind, especially when others aren’t.
A celebration of the world’s diverse cultures, both our similarities and differences. Fox’s message is that no matter where we come from, within our hearts, “Joys are the same, / and love is the same. / Pain is the same, / and blood is the same.”
“…a beautiful book with a beautiful message…the book shows young children how easy it is to be kind through small acts and in simple ways…” ―R.J. Palacio, author of Wonder
Parable about mercy and empathy that asks readers to look at life from an insect’s point of view
This heartwarming book encourages positive behavior by using the concept of an invisible bucket to show children how easy and rewarding it is to express kindness, appreciation and love by “filling buckets.”
Organized around a simple metaphor of a dipper and a bucket, How Full Is Your Bucket? shows how even the smallest interactions we have with others every day profoundly affect our relationships, productivity, health and longevity. This is a version for young readers.
A small boy, not allowed to have a dog because times are tight, finds a starving kitten in a trash can on the same day his father loses his job.
Auggie & Me is a new side to the Wonder story: three new chapters from three different characters: bully Julian, oldest friend Christopher and classmate Charlotte
A picture book by the author of Wonder, that explains for young readers how someone can look different but feel completely normal and how it feels to look different and have people stare at you. The message is “Look with kindness and you will always find wonder.”
These are books about marginalized characters or characters facing difficult challenges who respond with courage. If Wonder helped your reader develop more empathy, these books will help build on their interest.
Used at PS 321 and many schools, the Peace Path is a framework for addressing a myriad of interpersonal conflicts such as feeling left out of a group, having problems sharing or taking turns, physical altercations, or other words or actions that lead to hurt feelings.
Thoughtful picture book about a young Korean girl on her first day of school. Beautiful, expressive illustrations show how a considerate teacher and even a new friend help Sumi discover that school might not be so lonely after all.
We can’t always be there to protect our kids from peer pressure, but we can arm them with the power to think for themselves! Kale sets a great example when it comes to making independent decisions in this straightforward kids book. He likes animals and super capes and it doesn’t matter that his friends prefer construction trucks and freight trains.
“[A] poetic reckoning of the importance of love in a child’s life . . . eloquent and moving.”—People Magazine “Everything that can be called love — from shared joy to comfort in the darkness — is gathered in the pages of this reassuring, refreshingly honest picture book.”—The New York Times Book Review, Editors’ Choice / Staff Picks From the Book Review
Blue is a quiet color. Red’s a hothead who likes to pick on Blue. Yellow, Orange, Green, and Purple don’t like what they see, but what can they do? When no one speaks up, things get out of hand — until One comes along and shows all the colors how to stand up, stand together, and count. As budding young readers learn about numbers, counting, and primary and secondary colors, they also learn about accepting each other’s differences and how it sometimes just takes one voice to make everyone count.
“Readers will chime in with the ‘hip, hip hooray’ this cuddly-looking creature earns when he finally embraces and celebrates his differences.” —Kirkus
The girl in this story sees it happening, but she would never do these mean things herself. Then one day something happens that shows her that being a silent bystander isn’t enough. Will she take some steps on her own to help another kid? Could it be as simple as sitting on the bus with the girl no one has befriended (and discovering that she has a great sense of humor)? Resources at the end of the book will help parents and children talk about teasing and bullying and find ways to stop it at school. One child at a time can help change a school.
In this funny yet endearing story, one little boy learns an effective recipes for turning your best enemy into your best friend. Accompanied by charming illustrations, Enemy Pie serves up a sweet lesson in the difficulties and ultimate rewards of making new friends.
Amos the mouse and Boris the whale: a devoted pair of friends with nothing at all in common, except good hearts and a willingness to help their fellow mammal.
Ideal for sparking conversations about tolerance, the need for compromise, and fear of the unknown.
This gentle story shows how small acts of kindness can help children feel included and allow them to flourish. Any parent, teacher, or counselor looking for material that sensitively addresses the needs of quieter children will find The Invisible Boy a valuable and important resource.
Shows kids how easy it is to develop empathy toward those around them. Empathy is the ability to notice what other people feel. Empathy leads to the social skills and personal relationships which make our lives rich and beautiful, and it is something we can help our children learn.
A fresh and original twist on the common issue of bullying. Kids will relate, and parents and teachers will appreciate the story’s deft handling of conflict resolution, which happens without adult intervention.
Chloe and her friends won’t play with the new girl, Maya. Every time Maya tries to join Chloe and her friends, they reject her. Eventually Maya stops coming to school. When Chloe’s teacher gives a lesson about how even small acts of kindness can change the world, Chloe is stung by the lost opportunity for friendship, and thinks about how much better it could have been if she’d shown a little kindness toward Maya.
Blends humor with practical advice as it tackles a serious subject. Trevor Romain starts by explaining what cliques are and why they exist: because everyone wants to have friends. He reveals why some cliques are so annoying—and often full of phonies. And he shares the secret to being popular: just be yourself!
This is a very cute story about kids learning to be friends with people who have different interests. It takes place as a competition between two school clubs and a rivalry spurred on when the principal calls out both clubs for not contributing to the school community. The characters learn to get past embarrassment and bad history, and that their actions have consequences not just for themselves but that also affect those around them. The artwork is beautiful and the cast displays many ethnicities & personalities.
A great middle school book on bullying. Jensen is a little overweight and spends a lot of time fantasizing about becoming an astronaut (even though he’s failing math). He’s an ordinary kid who tries too hard to belong. Kids sniff out that neediness and then it’s open season. Jensen triumphs not because he loses weight, or becomes an athlete or a brilliant student. He finds his own place in the Middle School Jungle, through maturity of thought, while staying his own dreamy self.
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What Does a Princess Really Look Like? is part of the Brave Like A Girl Series. Chloe loves princesses and ballerinas, but she also wants to create a Princess Ballerina that mirrors herself. When Chloe is finished creating her strong, smart, and kind princess, Chloe’s dads pop in to see the final product. They celebrate the girl, their daughter, who is being represented through paper, glue, and jewels.
“This picture book is filled with wit and musings on what it means for a young girl to be beautiful. The illustrations evoke a feeling of uniqueness, independence, and strength, defining beauty through diversity, talents, and passions.” —School Library Journal
High on energy and imagination, this ode to self-esteem encourages kids to appreciate everything about themselves—inside and out. Messy hair? Beaver breath? So what! Here’s a little girl who knows what really matters.
The combination of Parr’s silly sense of humor and bright illustrations draws in kids of all ages. Parr often references families with two moms, two dads, and adoptive families. Be Who You Are encourages and emphasizes the beauty of our differences, including wearing what we need to feel like ourselves and being proud of where we are from.
A great chart to help kids determine the scale of their problems and put their issues into perspective, perfect to tape on the refrigerator at home.
The Zones of Regulation is a curriculum geared toward helping students gain skills in consciously regulating their actions, which in turn leads to increased control and problem solving abilities. Using a cognitive behavior approach, the curriculum’s learning activities are designed to help students recognize when they are in different states called “zones,” with each of four zones represented by a different color. In the activities, students also learn how to use strategies or tools to stay in a zone or move from one to another.
The tables are turned when a tantrum-prone little girl must try to keep her big, temperamental friend from throwing fits throughout the day. A nice way for preschoolers to see tantrum behavior from a different perspective without the message feeling forced.
Everybody gets angry sometimes. For children, anger can be very upsetting. Parents, teachers, and children can talk about it. People do lots of different things when they get angry. In this Caldecott Honor book, kids will see what Sophie does when she gets angry. What do you do?
A boldly illustrated picture book read-aloud about how everyone gets sad—ninjas, wrestlers, knights, superheroes, everyone . . . even daddies have emotions!
All about turning the blame game into the responsibility challenge for kids
An empathetic approach to the habit of interrupting that teaches children a witty technique to help them manage their rambunctious thoughts and words and teaches the value of respecting others by listening and waiting for their turn to speak
Personal space camp addresses the complex issue of respect for another person’s physical boundaries. Told from Louis perspective, this story is a must-have resource for parents, teachers, and counselors who want to communicate the idea of personal space in a manner that connects with kids.
An entertaining comic book that offers different ways, that can be reviewed repeatedly, to teach kids how to develop their own social detective skills
A fun and motivating way to build social thinking skills. Students learn how each of them have Superflexible capacities in their brains that can overcome a Team of Unthinkables, such as Rock Brain, Topic Twister Meister and Mean Jean.
In every spiritual tradition, we find teachings on the virtues and qualities that we most want to pass on to our kids—such as generosity, kindness, honesty, determination, and patience. Today, a growing body of research from neuroscience and social psychology supports these teachings, offering insights into cultivating these virtues in ourselves and in our families. Raising Resilience is a practical guide for parents and educators of children from preschool through adolescence, detailing ten universal principles for happy families and thriving children.
Growing Up Mindful helps parents, educators, and counselors learn how to embody and share the skills of mindfulness that will empower our children with resilience throughout their lives. With more than 75 accessible exercises and practices, along with adaptations for the individual needs of a wide range of children and teens
Children learn both their ABCs and the basics of mindfulness through playful exercises and vivid illustrations. Each letter of the alphabet teaches a simple mindfulness or compassion-based practice.
A meditation therapist’s case for deep relaxation in terms pitched straight at kids with suggestions like visualizing the quieting of one’s mind as the settling of particles in a muddied jar of water.
Louis is a verb! He has a lot of trouble focusing and he is always doing something, but the problem is usually it’s the wrong something. Louis mom teaches him how to focus by showing him a few hands on ideas that anyone can try. A must have book for all who struggle with paying attention!
Each day, there are so many things to think about. Getting ready for school, turning in homework, taking a math test, band solo tryouts, soccer practice…and it is a long way from your head to your feet. Be Where Your Feet Are! reinforces the concepts of mindfulness and being present in a fun way children will remember, and shows what can happen when we learn to appreciate the world—and people—around us.
Simple mindfulness practices to help your child deal with anxiety, improve concentration, and handle difficult emotions
A Handful of Quiet presents one of the best known and most innovative meditation practices developed by Thich Nhat Hanh as part of the Plum Village community’s practice with children. Pebble meditation is a playful and fun activity that parents and educators can do with their children to introduce them to meditation. It is designed to involve children in a hands-on and creative way that touches on their interconnection with nature. Practicing pebble meditation can help relieve stress, increase concentration, nourish gratitude, and can help children deal with difficult emotions.
Written in a highly accessible style that doesn’t rely on lot of jargon or difficult vocabulary requiring breaks for explanation, Thich Nhat Hanh emphasizes the importance of the present moment through vivid metaphors, original allegories, and colorful stories. Young readers will learn about handling anger, living in the present moment, and “interbeing” — the interconnectedness of all things. Thich Nhat Hanh offers various practices that children can do on their own or with others that will help them to transform anger and unhappiness and reconnect to the wonders of nature and the joy of living in the present moment.
Fun, engaging activities that teach kids and parents the basics of mindfulness. Breathing exercises, visualizations and focus-based meditation.
Mindfulness practices for children and adults
Carol Dweck a pioneering researcher in the field of motivation, explains growth mindset, the idea that we can grow our brain’s capacity to learn and to solve problems. In this talk, she describes two ways to think about a problem that’s slightly too hard for you to solve. Are you not smart enough to solve it—or have you just not solved it yet? A great introduction to this influential field.
From the Institute for Habits of Mind, whose goal is to create a more thoughtful, cooperative, compassionate generation of people who skillfully work to resolve social, environmental, economic and political problems.
“One of the most influential books ever about motivation.”—Po Bronson, author of NurtureShock
A chart that uses the language of growth mindset to encourage children to love effort and change negative language and attitudes toward difficult tasks
A great chart to help children differentiate big problems from little ones.
Kristi Mraz and Christine Hertz provide practical and powerful strategies for cultivating optimism, flexibility, and empathy alongside traditional academic skills. Great lessons on teaching kids, or adults, how to become lifelong learners.
TransformEd supports educators and education systems in equipping students with the Mindsets, Essential Skills, and Habits (MESH) they need to succeed in college, career, and life.
For the early grades’ exploration of character education, this funny book offers a perfect example of the rewards of perseverance and creativity.
With his signature blend of playfulness and sensitivity, Parr explores the subject of all things scary and assures readers that all of us are afraid sometimes.
This fun and engaging introduction to the anatomy and functions of the brain will empower each young reader to S-T-R-E-T-C-H and grow their Fantastic, Elastic Brain!
A story for anyone, at any age, who has ever had a problem that they wished would go away. It’s a story to inspire you to look closely at that problem and to find out why it’s here. Because you might discover something amazing about your problem…and yourself.
Kazoo is an ad-free, award-winning magazine for girls. This issue focuses on the importance of making mistakes and features women experts from Senator Elizabeth Warren to NASA engineer Laurie Grindle. There’s an amazing comic about Julia Child and how she made mistakes all the time and just kept going.
Embraces life’s happy accidents, the mistakes and mess-ups that can lead to self discovery. Makes readers feel good about themselves, encouraging them to try new things, experiment, and dare to explore new paths.
A hilarious, irreverent book about doing your own thing. Meet Iggy Peck—creative, independent, and not afraid to express himself! Iggy Peck will delight readers looking for irreverent, inspired fun.
When her great-great-aunt Rose (Rosie the Riveter) comes for a visit and mentions her one unfinished goal—to fly—Rosie sets to work building a contraption to make her aunt’s dream come true. But when her contraption doesn’t fly but rather hovers for a moment and then crashes, Rosie deems the invention a failure. On the contrary, Aunt Rose insists that Rosie’s contraption was a raging success. You can only truly fail, she explains, if you quit.
Champions girl power and women scientists, and brings welcome diversity to picture books about girls in science. Touching on themes of never giving up and problem solving, Ada comes to learn that her questions might not always lead to answers, but rather to more questions. She may never find the source of the stink, but with a supportive family and the space to figure it out, she’ll be able to feed her curiosity in the ways a young scientist should.
Twelve-year-old Marshall wants to be a superhero, but his powers always go wrong. He can shoot lasers from his eyes, but they either miss the target or cause more damage. And when you have severe motion sickness, flying is no fun. Marshall and others like him are referred to as “defectives.” But when the villainous Man With No Name tries to destroy the city again, Marshall and The Night Owl, a retired crime fighter, must team up to work with the powers they have, redeem themselves, and save the day.
Through vivid examples, Goleman delineates the five crucial skills of emotional intelligence, and shows how they determine our success in relationships, work, and even our physical well-being. What emerges is an entirely new way to talk about being smart.
Our reactions to others, and theirs to us, have a far-reaching biological impact, sending out cascades of hormones that regulate everything from our hearts to our immune systems, making good relationships act like vitamins—and bad relationships like poisons. We can “catch” other people’s emotions the way we catch a cold, and the consequences of isolation or relentless social stress can be life-shortening.
Bestselling classic includes author’s time-tested methods to solve common problems and build foundations for lasting relationships, including innovative ways to cope with your child’s negative feelings; express your strong feelings without being hurtful; engage your child’s willing cooperation; set firm limits and maintain goodwill; use alternatives to punishment that promote self-discipline; understand the difference between helpful and unhelpful praise; resolve family conflicts peacefully.
Fostering emotional connection with your child creates real and lasting change. When you have that vital connection, you don’t need to threaten, nag, plead, bribe—or even punish.
The authors explain—and make accessible—the new science of how a child’s brain is wired and how it matures. The “upstairs brain,” which makes decisions and balances emotions, is under construction until the mid-twenties. And especially in young children, the right brain and its emotions tend to rule over the logic of the left brain. No wonder kids throw tantrums, fight, or sulk in silence. By applying these discoveries to everyday parenting, you can turn any outburst, argument, or fear into a chance to integrate your child’s brain and foster vital growth.
“I wrote Raising Human Beings because, for a very long time, it’s been clear that kids who aren’t classified as ‘behaviorally challenging’ benefit tremendously from being involved in the process of solving the problems that affect their lives. And because I’ve been really concerned about societal trends that have caused many kids to focus a lot more on ‘me’ than on ‘we’…the problems that affect us all are going to require that we proceed in ways that are for the collective good rather than solely for individuals.” —Ross Greene
Explosive kids are lacking some crucial skills in the domains of flexibility/adaptability, frustration tolerance, and problem solving, and they require a different approach to parenting.
This breakthrough book demonstrates how parents and teachers can join forces to inspire kids to be self-directed, self-disciplined, and responsive to the wonders of learning.
Love Your Family Again is filled with concrete, action-based strategies that truly work. Within these pages you will learn how to: 1. Stop negotiating with your children 2. Raise kids that listen 3. Identify the actions needed to combat problem behavior 4. Build more happiness within your family 5. Take small steps each day that lead to big changes.