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Coping Skills for Kids

Coping Skills Checklist

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Coping skills are activities you can do to help manage difficult thoughts and feelings. Not all coping skills work all the time, so it’s good to have a variety to help your child manage their thoughts and feelings. I created a checklist several years ago that I’ve used in school settings, in individual therapy and in small group settings, and I’ve received great feedback on it.

In order to get an accurate list of coping skills, you’ve got to start figuring out what works and what doesn’t for your child. It also makes sense to figure out new things they haven’t tried yet, to increase their list of coping skills. Once it’s all filled out, you can make a list of their current coping skills. You can also make a list of ones they want to try.

The list is by no means exhaustive, but it’s an excellent way to get started and begin exploring ways for your child to manage their feelings. I’ve made the checklist available for download. Here’s how to do it:

You can either choose to go through the checklist with your child or have them do it independently. For older kids, I usually have them do it independently and then go through it together with them after they are done. Have them:

  • check the ones that work for them

  • cross off the ones that don’t

  • circle the ones they’d like to try.

Note: For some kids, looking at the list can be overwhelming. If that’s the case, break it down into chunks, covering up part of the paper and only going through a few at a time. I’ve even done this over a few sessions with clients.

This checklist is one of the printables included in the Coping Skills for Kids Workbook. To learn more, click here.

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