If you haven’t already done so, go see “Inside Out” because it’s a fantastic and accessible representation of how our emotions play into our everyday experiences individually and amongst each other.
Identifying Emotions Can Help Us Navigate the Emotional Health of Our Children & Families
“Inside Out” is the story of a family who moves from Minnesota to San Francisco and whose preteen daughter has a difficult time adjusting to her new school, new friends, and her new life.
Psychological research actually identifies Six Universal Emotions: Happy, Sad, Surprised, Afraid, Disgusted, Angry (although there is debate about combining some to create four recognized emotions instead). “Inside Out” does a great job making this research come to life.
This movie is funny while also being informative, and it doesn’t hold back with the hard stuff, like expressing sadness and experiencing depression.
American Culture Holds Us Back from Understanding Our Feelings
Our American Get-Up-and-Go culture really holds us back from acknowledging and talking about our underlying feelings. Even as I write that, I know some of you are rollin’ your eyes because you’re uncomfortable with just the thought of that “cheesy” word: feelings.
But it’s true!
Understanding our feelings is the backbone of navigating social, physical, and emotional trials. There are over half a million working Mental Health Professionals helping adults and children in the U.S. Someone’s keeping them in business. Maybe we’re all more open to seeking out help but just not talking about it with each other?
That’s why this movie was so eye-opening. It brought to light the fact that people of all ages struggle with how to appropriately deal with emotions and, instead, often stuff their feelings down deep inside until they burst out in unhealthy ways. It’s only when we recognize the underpinnings our emotional outburst that we can effectively deal with the real problems.
“Inside Out” is the first of its kind to showcase the importance of emotional identification. And it makes me feel pretty good to know that the kiddos I’m supporting are growing up in a generation that sees how important emotional learning is too.
Toys & Games to Help Your Child Learn to Identify Emotions
Current Emotional Response Visual Supports, Activities, and Products on the Market:
• Feelings App
• Expanding Expression Tool
• All About Me Mirror Boards
• MindWing Concepts
• Social Thinking Books, Games, Posters
• Feelings and Emotional Washable Dolls
• How Are You Feeling Today Center
Know of any other good feelings apps or products that you like? Send ’em our way!
Christine Terry, J.D., is a Special Education Advocate & Founder of Terry Tutors. She created the One Wraparound Service for The Struggling Student, which includes Academic, Behavior, Special Education Advocacy, and School Placement services. Christine truly loves helping students realize their inner potential and the possibilities that await them: “To be a part of a student’s ‘ah ha’ moment is the best feeling in the world because I know I’m helping that student build foundational confidence that will lead to a successful path, not just in school but throughout life!”