Social Stories to Teach Children Emotional Regulation Skills

Everyone feels sad from time to time. Feelings of sadness in children are completely normal. Every child processes sadness in different ways. Some like to talk to a trusted friend or adult, while others find that crying helps them feel better.

Learning to manage sadness is an important part of growing up. If you’re looking for resources to teach your child emotional regulation skills and appropriate ways to manage and express sadness, try using a social/behavior story.

Write the story from the child’s perspective, outlining appropriate responses and actions they can take when they are feeling sad.

For example: It’s okay to feel sad when my friend moves away.” Or, “It’s okay to be sad because my dog is lost. When I’m feeling sad, it’s okay to cry. It’s also okay for me to talk to my mom or dad about why I am sad.”

You can make your own social story or use one of the templates our educational consultants have prepared already!

Special Education Consultant/Author: Lisa Plastino, M.Ed.

These special education behavior stories may benefit your students when they are dealing with sadness or sad situations.  They can be downloaded, saved and edited to suit your needs.  The * notation indicates the story is  formatted in a Power Point presentation and the ** notation indicates a Power Point with sound narration.  Each Power Point has animation included on each slide.  Some occur automatically – some occur on a “click”.  Feel free to send comments or questions to [email protected].

Sometimes I Feel Sad

Words and Actions Can Hurt*

Did My Pet Get Lost?

If you have questions or concerns about the Watson Institute’s use of this information, please contact us.