Smile Inside


Social and Emotional Learning Activities for All Ages

Essential character education activities for anyone who works with youth, these social and emotional learning activities facilitate the development of self-awareness, resilience, and responsibility.

Smile Inside: Experiential Activities for Self-Awareness Ages 12-13

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During the middle years, young people benefit from developing self-awareness about their feelings, thinking, and behavior. This resource for ages twelve and thirteen provides a comprehensive social and emotional learning curriculum that will prepare them for the challenges of adolescence. In addition, select modules and activities can be used as prevention and intervention programs to counteract specific issues of bullying, self-destructive behaviors, social isolation, and apathy.

This practical handbook contains seventy-one valuable and fun activities with step-by-step instructions for teachers, youth workers, and counselors who work in schools, youth groups, and at camps. The following modules are explored: Icebreakers, Focus & Listening, Empathy & Respect, Self-Talk, Self-Exploration, Emotions & Coping, Problem Solving & Decision Making,  Goal Setting, Group Dynamics, Esprit de Corps through Service Learning, and Culmination.

Smile Inside: Experiential Activities for Self-Awareness, Ages 14-15

front cover 14-15 • Replace bullying and exclusion with group bonding. • Facilitate the development of empathy, self-awareness, and emotional intelligence through interactive and introspective activities. • Use the activities as needed or allow each module to build upon the last by using the book in its entirety as a prevention program. • This companion handbook with the same modules, contains 65 valuable and fun activities with step-by-step instructions for teachers, youth workers, and counselors who work in schools, youth groups, and at camps.

User-friendly layout, minimal preparation, and no training required



“Feel” in the Blanks Emotional Literacy Game


“Feel” in the Blanks is a game that uses question cards, a feelings list, and dice to facilitate social and emotional learning in children ages 8-13. The game enhances emotional literacy by asking players to reflect on feelings and share with others. This activity is highly effective for small group work because it encourages exploration and expression of emotions in an interactive and fun format. “Feel” in the Blanks comes in a plastic deck box and includes two sets of the same 26 cards distinguished by color. Dice are not included, however, digital dice can easily be used. This product is currently available for $10.95 USD here.

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The Philosophy

  • An individual’s ability to be motivated and to learn is hindered if their mind is preoccupied with problems, concerns, or anxieties.  Failing to attend to these issues as a part of the educational process is counter-productive.
  • Self-esteem is built upon a series of small successes that eventually lead to greater achievements.  This leads to a self-sustaining sense of self worth.  However, not all individuals require increased self-esteem.
  • Someone with an authentic sense of self, social skills, and resilience is likely to continue to seek knowledge and will find success in all aspects of life.
  • It is essential for youth to develop values, morals, empathy, as well as coping and problem-solving skills.
  • If you give a child a thought, you prepare him for a day.  If you teach a child how to think, you prepare him for a lifetime.

If young people can strengthen their conviction to be true to themselves throughout life, they are less likely to be affected by unhealthy influences and less tempted to make a wrong turn on their journeys. Mastering their minds and behavior and coming to a deeper understanding of their relationship to others and the world is the foundation for sound mental health. Smile Inside offers self-awareness activities, social and emotional learning activities, and character education activities to engage and inspire the learner on their journey to adulthood. 

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