iPad Apps for Emotional Regulation

appsDoes your child or student have difficulty regulating their emotions? Many children need adults to help them manage their emotions and to learn appropriate coping skills. Helping children to develop their emotional regulation skills helps to build their self-regulation skills, resilience, self-esteem and confidence to cope in daily life. The iPad is increasingly becoming a great educational learning tool for students. In particular there are becoming an increasing number of apps to help teach students how to regulate their emotions.

iPad app: Choiceworks An engaging iPad app which allows ‘feeling boards’ to be created for a variety of emotions; such as angry, upset, tired, hungry and sad. It uses simple language and visuals for students to select how they are feeling and then to choose appropriate strategies they could try to help them return to feeling just right. This could be a useful visual tool to use when the student is having difficulty regulating their emotions.

iPad app: Calm Counter A simple iPad app which students can use to self-monitor as they are calming down. It uses colour and faces to indicate how they are feeling, starting at 10 for very angry down to 1 for happy. As the student continues to calm they continue working down through the faces until they feel ok again. There is also a social story included in this app about feeling upset, frustrated and angry.

iPad app: Brain works This iPad app is a great tool for students to select what environment they are in, how they are feeling and what strategy is appropriate to use for a sensory break to help them feel ‘just right’ again. The sensory break can be timed so that the student is aware of how long they have for a break. The app comes with a large bank of visuals to use and can be customised so that strategies are suitable for the different environments of home, school and the community. At home and in the classroom start focusing on the importance of teaching students how to regulate their emotions- learning a new skill takes time and regular practise.

Tanya Currie Occupational Therapist

References

– iPad app: Choiceworks https://itunes.apple.com/au/app/choiceworks-visual-support/id486210964?mt=8

– iPad app: Calm Counter https://itunes.apple.com/au/app/calm-counter-social-story/id470369893?mt=8

– iPad app: Brain works https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/brain-works/id524997517?mt=8

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