Talking About Feelings

  • March 23, 2017
  • Bilingual Therapies

talking about feelingsKids often hold in how they are feeling. It may not be because they are trying to keep a secret. Often, it is because they may not know how to express what is happening in their own minds. Now imagine being a multilingual student who is less familiar with the words other people use to describe their feelings. This can be an even more difficult time for them if they are confused, sad, or upset. Taking time to explore feelings will not only be beneficial for those students, but all who may need to take a moment to think about their own feelings.

Start with some books about feelings that may help kids who are more shy to begin chatting about this topic. Remember to be sensitive to children who may have a lot going on at home. Use this as a way to assist kids to explore their own thoughts and feelings. Books that would work well include:

  • The Way I Feel by Janan Cain
  • Today I Feel Silly & Other Moods That Make My Day by Jamie Lee Curtis
  • Glad Monster Sad Monster by Ed Emberley
  • Wembley Worried by Kevin Henkes
  • The Color Monster: A Pop-Up Book of Feelings by Anna Llenas
  • Grumpy Bird by Jeremy Tankard
  • Mean Soup by Betsy Everitt
  • When Sophie’s Feelings Are Really, Really Hurt by Molly Bang

Take time to focus on the books and explore whether or not each child has felt the way the characters in the book have. And Next Comes L has a free printable LEGO emotions inference game that would tie in well with this. Through this activity, kids will use popular LEGO faces to further discuss emotions/feelings, practice WH questions, and use speech and language skills to make inferences. The directions and information on game play are on the website. Kids will enjoy using the fun LEGO faces to determine which matches the statement card. Use questions to follow up and get kids to explain more about why this would be the proper feeling for the statement.

Older kids have more complex feelings and emotions. Seeing the concepts will often help children to connect more with what the words mean. The Animated Woman has created unique Feelings Emoticons that could be used for games and exercises to explore this topic. The freebie version of the emoticons is available on Teachers Pay Teachers. This includes a 14-piece set to get started. These could be used to make feeling books with students, make matching games, or to start a game of charades.

Be sure to send home information with families so they know what you are talking about during sessions. Include words and translations of feelings that you cover for multilingual families to be able to talk with their children. The more kids are comfortable talking about these topics, the better it will be for them in the future.


After you’ve learned how to talk about your students’ feelings, think about your own! Are you “feeling” ready for a new career adventure? Check out our latest school-based opportunities to start your new journey today!

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