The Smile Jar
I was trying to think up another idea to help relieve some school anxiety at our house and here it is-our latest and greatest-The Smile Jar!! We started our Smile Jar last week, and it is still going strong and seems to be really helping. I will admit at first I was even a little skeptical it would help.
So, first off, making the Smile Jar-so very simple, all you need is a Jar of any kind (we used a mason jar) and I labeled it. You can print out The Smile Jar label here: The Smile Jar Free Printable Label . Next, all you need is a tablet or paper scraps and a pen.
Now the concept of The Smile Jar-Everyday after school you have your child write down a few things that made them smile or happy today and fold up the paper and put it in the jar. This helps by taking the time to think about the day and pull out the positives. Then, the later in the night (around bedtime for us) when school worries start to kick in about the next day, you can take the papers out of your smile jar and use it as a tool to help provide a visual reminder that the day ahead will be ok. This is working really great for us and I love it.
Anyone who has a child with any type of anxiety you already know just saying everything will be ok does not work, they need more. This is where out Smile Jar comes in, I love that she is responsible for picking out what made her smile, being able to reflect back upon the day, and use this to help ease some bedtime worries for the day ahead. Also, one more little mom perk of The Smile Jar-you can reflect and learn too! When the kids were at school one day, I pulled the papers out of the jar and read all the things that make my daughter smile-which in turn made me smile as well-proud mama!