Go Ask Mom

Go Ask Mom

Skill-By-Skill: Build your child's social-emotional skills with a healthy heart challenge for Valentine's Day

Posted February 6, 2018 12:49 p.m. EST

Courtesy: Skill-By-Skill

Editor's note: This post originally appeared on Skill-By-Skill's blog. Skill-By-Skill offers occupational therapy programs for kids and teens.

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with this activity to practice social-emotional skills with your child. These are essential for managing feelings, building friendships, solving problems and supporting positive mental health. Children taught strong social-emotional skills grow up to be more successful, fulfilled and happy!

Activity Preparation

Make 15 paper hearts
Put your child’s name on one
Write each of the following social-emotional skill words on the remaining 14 hearts:

  • Kindness
  • Patience
  • Empathy
  • Forgiveness
  • Gratitude
  • Honesty
  • Positivity
  • Bravery
  • Resilience
  • Teamwork
  • Adaptability
  • Attention/listening
  • Responsibility
  • Confidence

Put up one word each day for 14 days. Be intentional with that word all day.

For example, on Feb 7, make kindness the word. Tell your children what it means to be kind, then give them examples throughout the day.

  • “It would be kind to share your toy."
  • "How kind to open the door for your sister.”

Show them pictures of people being kind and demonstrate kind facial expressions. Show them kindness with your actions. Repeat with a new word each day!

Skill-By-Skill's Facebook page has more tips and ideas. The American Occupational Therapy Association has more information about the importance of social-emotional skills on its website.