Recently, we found a neat game that you can play with young children that allows them to explore a variety of emotions and to use their knowledge about animals! Using a game much like charades, kids can roll dice that tells them both an animal to act like and an emotion to show.
Parents, this one requires a bit more prep work as you will have to create the dice yourself. In the source link for this activity, wood blocks are used. However, you could probably use dice created using a paper template (e.g., http://www.mommynature.com/documents/blank-cube-template.pdf).
On one of the die you can write with a permanent marker emotions such as mad, sad, happy, scared, shy or silly. You could even try some more complex emotions such as hurt, frustrated or joyful. The second die will be for the charade animal. The source link suggests that you will want to pick animals easy to mimic, and ensure that they are also animals your child is familiar with. So, animals such as a cat, dog, monkey, cow, bird or elephant may be easier for children to pair with an emotion.
Once the dice are ready to go, have your child or yourself roll both dice at once. When two sides are revealed you can then say to the child "Show me your best sad elephant!" or "What would a happy dog look like?"
Exploring all of these emotions gives you a chance to talk about them with your child. It also gives parents a chance to talk to children about what they can do when they feel these ways (e.g., what the right thing is to do when mad)!
Happy emoting! :)
Please visit the source link for more information and pictures of this game in action! http://howsweeteritis.blogspot.ca/2011/09/emotional-animals-game-teach-kids-about.html?m=1
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