Help children play this game in which Julia and friends must choose different ways to respond to disappointments, surprises, and changes… and somehow “make it work.” (First, of course, they practice a calming strategy!) 

Make new choices each time you play the game. You can also: 

  • Ask children, “How do your friends on Sesame Street feel when things don’t go according to plan? Have you ever had big feelings like that?” Talk about specific times when they themselves have felt frustrated, or annoyed, or angry. 
  • Brainstorm ideas for calming down. Start with the ways Elmo and his friends use: popping bubbles, finding shapes, taking deep breaths. Together, think of other strategies that might help. Hugging a favorite toy? Putting on music? Make a list, using words and pictures, that can be used next time children need to work out big feelings.