Social Emotional Literacy Video #7

Good morning everyone!

Here is the seventh book in our Social Emotional Literacy series. Focus: Planting the seeds – recap of all areas covered. Click this link to play this week’s video featuring Plant the Tiny Seed by Christie Matheson and some social emotional tips from Mr. McCown.

If you would like a copy of the Zones of Regulation, please email Mr. McCown at [email protected]

Check out Plant the Tiny Seed by Christie Matheson!

It’s available as an eBook in Sora!

Social Emotional Literacy Video #6

Good morning everyone!

Here is the sixth book in our Social Emotional Literacy series. Focus: Mindfulness / Breathing strategy for changing feelings and resetting. Click this link to play this week’s video featuring Grumpy Pants by Claire Messer and some social emotional tips from Mr. McCown. Mr. McCown will also be leading a guided breathing exercise.

If you would like a copy of the Zones of Regulation, please email Mr. McCown at [email protected]

Check out Grumpy Pants by Claire Messer!

It’s available as an eBook in Sora!

Social Emotional Literacy Video #5

Good morning everyone!

Here is the fifth book in our Social Emotional Literacy series. Focus: Gratitude – a strategy for feeling good. Click this link to play this week’s video featuring I’m Going to Run Away by Joan Hansen and some social emotional tips from Mr. McCown. Mr. McCown will also demonstrate the “Three Good Things” activity from the book Mindful Games by Susan Kaiser Greenland.

If you would like a copy of the Zones of Regulation, please email Mr. McCown at [email protected]

Social Emotional Literacy Video #4

Good morning everyone!

Here is the fourth book in our Social Emotional Literacy series. Focus: Spring, new beginnings and a review of ideas from previous weeks. Click this link to play this week’s video featuring Spring for Sophie by Yael Werber & Jen Hill and some social emotional tips from Mr. McCown.

If you would like a copy of the Zones of Regulation, please email Mr. McCown at [email protected]

Check out Spring for Sophie by Yael Werber & Jen Hill!

It’s available as an eBook in Sora!

Werber, Yael, and Jen Hill. Spring for Sophie. New York: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2017. Print.

Social Emotional Literacy Video #3

Good morning everyone!

Here is the third book in our Social Emotional Literacy series. Focus: Managing feelings – an introduction to self-care. Click this link to play this week’s video featuring When Sophie Gets Angry – Really, Really Angry by Molly Bang and some social emotional tips from Mr. McCown.

If you would like a copy of the Zones of Regulation, please email Mr. McCown at [email protected]

Check out When Sophie Gets Angry – Really, Really Angry by Molly Bang!

It’s available as an eBook in Sora!

Bang, Molly. When Sophie gets angry– really, really angry. New York: Scholastic, 2004. Print.

Social Emotional Literacy Video #2

Good morning everyone!

Here is the second book in our Social Emotional Literacy series. Focus: Internal locus of control – who controls your mind? Click this link to play this week’s video featuring Pete the Cat and His Magic Sunglasses by Kimberly & James Dean and some social emotional tips from Mr. McCown.

If you would like a copy of the Zones of Regulation, please email Mr. McCown at [email protected]

Check out Pete the Cat and His Magic Sunglasses by Kimberly & James Dean!

It’s available as an eBook in Sora!

Dean, James, and Kim Dean. Pete the Cat and His Magic Sunglasses. New York: Harper, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers, 2013. Print.

Social Emotional Literacy Video #1

Good morning everyone!

Here is the first book in our Social Emotional Literacy series. Focus: Identifying emotions using The Zones of Regulation – name feelings to tame feelings. Click this link to play this week’s video featuring The Color Monster by Anna Llenas and some social emotional tips from Mr. McCown.

If you would like a copy of the Zones of Regulation, please email Mr. McCown at [email protected]

Check out The Color Monster! It is available as an eBook in Sora!

Check out The Color Monster by Anna Llenas!

It’s available as an eBook in Sora!

Llenas, Anna. The Color Monster. New York: Little, Brown and Company, 2018. Print.

Feeling Good During Hard Times

Building Social-Emotional Literacy

by Matt McCown, Speech Pathologist, Pilot Butte Middle School

When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.” – Fred Rogers

Kids and grown-ups,

How are you coping?

We’ve had a lot of changes lately. Change, not knowing how to do new things or what’s going to happen next will make us stressed out. It’s OK to feel your feelings. There are good ones, like a deep, belly laugh. It’s OK to feel the bad ones, too, like stress. Mister Rogers taught me that.

Can I tell you a story?

One day, I was super stressed out. I was at work. I wasn’t “using my strategies” to feel better, either. This can happen when we get so upset that we “flip our lids” and aren’t thinking straight, right?

Anyway, I was feeling stress and getting lost in it. Then, in the library, I heard April Witteveen, Deschutes Public Librarian, doing a story time with the kids. I don’t remember what book it was. That’s not important. What’s important is that my feeling changed from stress to amusement and then…to comfort. Goodbye stress. It was weird to feel powerful bad feelings change that quickly. I wasn’t used to letting go so easily.

Well, I was kind of wishing I was a kid again so I could stop my stress and just enjoy story time  – so I could leave the lame grown-up world and join a more light, funny, simple feeling. Then I remembered that I don’t need special permission to feel something simple and fun – to allow myself comfort.

You don’t need special permission to feel your feelings. You are also free to let your feelings change any time from fear to comfort, from stress to kindness and caring.

But, how do we do this?

Sometimes we need a little extra help with letting our feelings change, don’t we? The good news: anyone can do it! But, different things work for different people. For some, a good stretch helps increase a mind-body connection that instantly changes your feeling, taking you out of your bothersome thoughts. For others, sitting and focusing on breath, aka “mindfulness” can take you out of that tight, stressful body feeling into a calm (but alert) state of mind.

For my friend, it’s remembering his dog. He told me if he feels angry, he thinks of his dog. Boom! His feelings change. He said, “It’s hard to feel angry when I remember my little dog,” and that memory instantly changes his feelings from fear or anger to a simple feeling of care and love. Once, my friend was so upset, he called and said this wasn’t working. He was so angry and disappointed about something that when he imagined his dog, he felt better for a second, but then his angry feelings came right back.

I helped him this way: I said, remember your dog again and feel that feeling of your little dog. Now remember that feeling and continue it. Sit in a chair, comfortably and continue that good feeling you get from your dog for just five minutes. Set a timer. It worked. He was better.

Did you know that people who stutter don’t stutter when they speak to their dogs?

This is brain science, and when we have good experiences of coping with stress, our brains grow and change in positive directions. Our confidence improves as we realize we have more power and control than we once thought we did. We aren’t victims of our feelings. Our feelings are our friends when we have the skills to start and continue a good feeling.

Some scientists call it “flow.” People in the sports world call it, “being in the zone.”

We all want to feel good.

For me, it’s music. I put on music to change my feelings. Music continues, and that’s what I need. I need my good feelings to continue.

We all need a comforting experience, especially now. How are you coping with these changes?

Look for the helpers.

At PBMS, we do a social-emotional-literacy time with our life skills students: a comforting story time with ideas and practice for coping, getting along with others, self-regulation, feeling good. We’ll be continuing this time each week online and would like to extend that experience to you, because you are never too old for story time, never too old to find comfort in something simple, never too old to learn how to cope.

During our social-emotional-literacy time, we’ll be reading simple, delightful, silly stories to enjoy with messages and strategies we can use to get along with others, manage stress, self-regulate and feel good. The stories are fun. The strategies are based in science. I’ll be pushing these stories out to my students. We’ll also be pushing these stories out each week on Friday to this blog. It doesn’t matter if you’re young or old. There will be humor, comfort and coping skills in this story time for everyone.

Will you join us?

How do I get books now that our school library is closed?

First, If you’re reading this I’m glad you visited my blog! Second, I’m sooo happy you’re looking for books! My librarian heart just grew two sizes.

Getting books is a bit of a challenge right now if you like to read actual books you can touch and feel and smell (there’s nothing like the smell of a new book, am I right?!) However, if you’re willing to read an eBook or listen to an Audiobook on your iPad or another device, you have options. Here are a few ideas and I’ll add more as I find them:

Sora is the best place to start. The other school librarians and I have been adding titles, including “Always Available” titles which can be accessed by more than one person at a time. If there is a book you’d like to read but you can’t locate it in Sora, email me at [email protected] I’ll add them if I can.

Deschutes Public Library is another good place to get eBooks, Audiobooks, magazines, movies and more. You can even link your DPL account with your school Sora account for eBooks and Audiobooks in one place. Yeah…that just happened.

epic! is also a great place to find books. You’ll need to get an invite from me or from another teacher but we love to give books to kids, so just ask. This is normally a paid service but they’ve been super nice and are offering it for free until the end of the school year. Their site says they have books for kids 12 and under (so, basically up to 8th grade), so it’s a great place to get books for younger brothers and sisters, too! All Bend-La Pine students should have the app in Self Service but you can also access using a browser on another device.

If you have access to Amazon’s free books or you share books through Kindle in your family, those are great ideas, too. If you have more ideas I would love to share them on my blog, so just email me your ideas at [email protected]