Click here to read Feelings Activities for Preschoolers to Learn to Handle those Big Emotions on Hands On As We Grow®
Teach preschoolers how to express and handle those big feelings in healthy ways with this awesome list of activities all about emotions.
Emotions and feelings can be difficult to control and understand.
Even for parents!
That’s why it is important to teach feelings and prepare our children to handle those big emotions they may have.
Talking with our preschoolers about feelings is a great start.
But it’s not the only way to teach preschoolers about feelings and emotions!
Make sure to check out this Teaching Emotions Toolkit and the following teaching feelings games and activities for some ideas.
I have a feeling you will find at least one idea that will work for you!
Teaching Feelings Activities for Preschoolers
Not only does learning about emotions help a child with his or her own emotions, but it also helps build empathy.
Here are some game and activity ideas to teach preschoolers about feelings.
- Mirror emotions as seen on Kids Activities. Then discuss the different looks.
- Create an emotions book found on No Time for Flashcards. Similarly, read a book to your preschoolers about emotions and feelings before an activity, such as these 35 books to teach emotions on Education to the Core or these 21 books about feelings on Childhood 101.
- Design DIY face plates like Learn with Less. This is another fun way to show how a feeling may look and for preschoolers to practice empathy with an activity! For example, if someone looks sad, what could we do?
- Color a feelings spinner as seen on Meaningful Mama. Then act out all the feelings.
- Wear paper plate masks found on No Time for Flashcards. So simple!
- Explore a feelings face like J Daniel 4s Mom. It’s amazing how simply moving the eye brows or mouth makes a completely different look!
- Play a feelings face sorting game shown on Having Fun at Home. This is also a great way to learn about opposites, such as happy versus sad.
- Design a few emotions discovery bottles like Laly Mom. Then imitate the faces.
- Build block faces as seen on Twitchetts. Mix and match the blocks for different looks!
- Finish an emotion painting shown on KinderArt. While painting, discuss emotions, colors, lines, and more.
- Toss a feelings ball as described by Pam Dyson. When have you felt sad or happy or angry? A great activity to show preschoolers that everyone has feelings and emotions!
- Sort emotions with a feelings ball toss found on Hope 4 Hurting Kids.
- Put on a play with popsicle puppets like Mas and Pas. What actions may cause someone to feel sad or angry? Why might someone feel happy or excited? Act it out!
- Assemble toilet paper roll faces as seen on Laura Radniecki. For simple faces, all you need are toilet paper rolls and markers. But you can add googly eyes, yarn hair, and more if desired.
- Enjoy some face snacks like Normal Life Mom or these fruit and vegetable faces like Feeling Magnets. Sometimes it’s okay to play with food. Especially when there is learning involved!
Controlling Emotions Activities for Preschoolers
Does the color of the toy really affect how much fun you can have with it?
To parents, probably not. But to preschoolers, YES!
And, like Chicken Little, it can be so hard for them to control those big emotions they are feeling as their world is falling apart.
Besides simply learning about feelings, below are some activities to stop the yelling and help preschoolers learn how to control those big emotions.
Of course, what works for one child may not work well with another. After all, each child is unique!
- Throw a dance party like Little Sprouts Learning. But don’t just dance to be silly. Act out different emotions with your preschoolers through dance to make it an emotions activity. Whenever a new song plays, talk about how the song makes you feel.
- Settle in for a movie night as seen on Passionate Penny Pincher. Then discuss the characters’ feelings and how they reacted. Did they react well or did they make poor choices?
- Strike a yoga pose found on Kids Yoga Stories. Become a grateful giraffe, caring koala, excited elephant, and more while learning to control those big emotions.
- Stomp out dinosaur-sized feelings as seen on The OT Toolbox. Then try one of these 35+ dinosaur activities and crafts. A great way to cause a bad attitude to go extinct!
- Play a game like this DIY feelings board game found on Art of Social Work. Or take a break by playing another simple game, like Spot It!
- Discuss the correct way to handle emotions with a thumbs up thumbs down jar activity for preschoolers as seen on Things to Share and Remember. For example, should we say how we feel? Thumbs up! Should we hit our friend when we are upset? Thumbs down!
- Shake a glitter jar as seen on Fireflies and Mud Pies. Then watch the calming swirl of the glitter as it settles.
- Fill a pom poms feelings jar like Mosswood Connections. While doing this, talk about calm and happy feelings versus disappointed and angry feelings.
- Create a DIY calm down kit shown on And Next Comes L. There are over 40 ideas of what to include, such as bubbles, fidget toys, small blanket, and more. This would be perfect to store in the car or keep easily accessible in the house.
- Try starfish breathing as explained on Project Play Therapy. Similarly, take a deep breath in, then a deep breath out, and count to five slowly. Then count again, quicker. Then again, even quicker. Make it a game: How quickly can you count without giggling?
- Tell some jokes like the ones found on We Are Teachers or these 100+ jokes found on Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls. After all, laughter is the best medicine.
- Say a prayer to calm anxiety like Little Shoots Deep Roots. This is one way to turn negative thoughts into positive thoughts.
- Go on a simple scavenger hunt as seen on Hands On As We Grow. Scavenger hunts can be a fun way to break large tasks into smaller tasks. Complete chores, homework assignments, and more with a scavenger hunt. More fun, less anxiety!
- Squeeze, squish, and smoosh homemade dough using directions found on Hands On As We Grow. Then sculpt something to show the emotions being felt.
- Explore a sensory bin found on Hands On As We Grow. Of course, this isn’t the best option during a full blown tantrum. But there are many sensory bin ideas and sensory bag ideas to try when the time is right.
Come up with even more activity ideas to help preschoolers control emotions. Then create an activities display for those activities.
So much fun!