5 Big Skills to Teach to Help Kids with Anger

Every year, I have students on my caseload who need help managing their anger. Sometimes it comes out in class and sometimes it comes out on the playground. Wherever it shows up, I want my students to have the skills they need to manage these angry feelings! To help kids with anger, I focus on these 5 skills!

Want to help kids with anger? Practice these 5 big skills together to help them identify and deal with anger when they face it!

Help Kids with Anger

1 – Recognizing Body Clues

First things first, kids need to be able to recognize that they are feeling angry! Their bodies will give them their first clues. Anger might feel like a pounding heart, clenched fists, sweating, tight throat, foggy brain, or lots of other body sensations! Color a body outline to show where anger is most intense or label a body with symbols to show what it feels like in each area (like a volcano in the chest!).

2 – Calming Strategies

Anger can feel like a huge explosion inside our bodies, so it’s really important to teach kids to reduce that explosive feeling with calming strategies. Practice these strategies together:

Want to help kids with anger? Practice these 5 big skills together to help them identify and deal with anger when they face it!

3 – Analyzing Thoughts

This is a tricky skill and takes lots of practice, but when kids are able to analyze their thoughts, they can pick out those tricky thoughts that might be making their anger even bigger than it should be! Look at examples of cognitive distortions:

Want to help kids with anger? Practice these 5 big skills together to help them identify and deal with anger when they face it!

In all of these situations, the anger thought is tricky because it’s making the situation seem worse than it really might be. But when we can identify those tricky thoughts, we can build new, more helpful ones!

Want to help kids with anger? Practice these 5 big skills together to help them identify and deal with anger when they face it!

4 – Self Talk

Creating a menu of self-talk statements that kids can pull from is helpful when they’re in the moment of anger. Self-talk statements are things they can say to themselves aloud or in their minds to remind themselves that they’re in control and can handle the situation. They might look like this:

  • I am in control of my body and my words.
  • It’s okay to walk away and take a break.

5 – I Statements & Assertiveness

We want kids to express themselves and know that it’s okay to tell someone that they’re feeling angry! But they can do it in a positive way. With I-statements, we take the blaming out of the conversation. Kids can own their feelings and ask for what they need.

  • I feel angry when you take my things without asking. Can you please ask first next time?
  • I feel upset when you don’t listen to my ideas. Can you please hear me out?
Want to help kids with anger? Practice these 5 big skills together to help them identify and deal with anger when they face it!

Read more about teaching kids about I-statements here.

Looking for kids anger management strategies? Try these calming strategies and communication tools to help kids calmly express themselves. Help kids with anger by using coping skills like breathing and progressive muscle relaxation before using I statements for anger. I statements for kids are great strategies for dealing with anger!

Find More Resources to Help Kids with Anger:

Managing Anger Printable Workbook for Kids

Managing Anger Group Counseling Program

Managing Anger Printable Board Game

Want to help kids with anger? Practice these 5 anger management skills for kids together to help them identify and deal with anger when they face it! Anger management workbook for kids that helps kids deal with anger. Great for school counseling individual counseling for anger or anger small group counseling activities.

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