Remember the post about the Angry Octopus book (by Lori Lite) that teaches progressive muscular relaxation in a way kids can understand? If not, check it out: Muscular Relaxation with Angry Octopus.
When I find something, like a book or video, that children enjoy, I try to milk it for all it’s worth! That’s where this Angry Octopus Supplemental Activity comes in… and it’s SO easy. Just print out or draw (I print out because I’m terrible at drawing) TWO outlines of an octopus.
During therapy (or at home if you’re a parent and want to do this at home), have the child identify 8 things that make them angry and have them write, or write for them, on the octopus tentacles (one thing for each tentacle). Then have them pick a color that makes them feel angry and have them color in the octopus. This is their Angry Octopus.
Next, have them identify 8 calming strategies, or things that make them feel calm. Write these on the tentacles of the second octopus (again, one thing per tentacle). Then have the kiddo pick a color that makes them feel calm or happy and have them color in that octopus. This is their Calm/Happy Octopus.
This exercise helps kiddos be more aware of triggers for angry feelings and strategies they can use to calm down when angry. Bonus!! They can hang up the Calm/Happy Octopus somewhere (the door of their room, the refrigerator, etc.) as a reminder to use their calming strategies when they are overwhelmed with emotions.