Toolbox Tuesdays

  • Courage Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 6/2/2020

    What does courage mean? Can you think of a synonym for courage or another word that means the same thing? There are times when we might feel scared of doing something. Sometimes, what we need to do is hard or we are scared of the consequences, but if we don’t do the right thing, will the consequences be worse?  The courage tool means having the courage to do the right thing. This can be telling the truth to an adult, or using our tools when we might not want to. What about standing up to a bully? That takes courage too!

    Listen to one of my favorite stories and answer the Toolbox Quiz in the comments section!

    Toolbox Quiz:

    1. Complete the sentence: “I have the ______________ to do the ___________________ thing.”
    2. Who was using the Courage Tool in the Story?
    3. Where does courage come from?

    We didn’t have time to go through all the tools before summer, but don’t worry I will be back to go over them again. Do you know which 3 tools we didn’t get a chance to go over on here yet? If you do, let me know below!

    Comments (0)
  • Apology and Forgiveness Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 5/26/2020

    What is an apology? Is it just saying, “I’m sorry.”?  If you said, “No”, then you’re right! A real apology should have four steps:


    What is forgiveness? Is it just saying okay, but what he/she did wasn’t okay? Choosing not to forgive someone if you are not ready is okay, but we are also making a choice to stay away from that person and not bother them if we still have angry feelings towards them.

    Toolbox Quiz:

    1. Complete the sentence: “I admit my ______________ and work to ___________________ yours.”
    2. There are at least 5 other tool you need to use, in order to forgive someone. Can you tell me a least three tools you need to use?

    Answer the questions in the comments below!

    Ref: Tara West

    Comments (0)
  • Using Your Words Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 5/19/2020

    The Using Our Words Tool is not just about using our words to let adults and other kids know what we’re thinking, but it’s important to be careful of HOW and WHEN we use our words. Can we use the right words in the wrong way?

    It matters not only which words you use, but how you use them. Are you screaming or whispering? What about your tone? Do you have an attitude when you are say, “I like your shoes”? Are you saying it in a mean and negative way? Or a positive and kind way? Try to think about it the next time you use your words.

    Activity: The Duckling Gets a Cookie?!

          1. Listen to the story below.

          2. In the comments box below answer the questions:

                A. In 2 sentences, tell me what happened in the story?

                B. Who was using their words in the right way?


    Toolbox Quiz: Complete the toolbox sentence: “I use the ____________ words in the ______________ way.”

    If you can complete the sentence, let me know what the missing words are below. Are you practicing your Using Your Words Tool while you’re at home?

    Comments (3)
  • Garbage Can Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 5/12/2020

    Can you remember what we use the Garbage Can tool for? Using this tool means that you “…let the little things go”. What does this mean? It means that sometimes things happen that hurt our feels or does not go the way we want. We can make a choice to think about if it’s a mouse sized problem or if it’s an elephant sized problem. If it’s a mouse sized problem, are we going to let it ruin our entire day? The answer I hope you said was NO!

    What if someone cuts in front of us in line or takes our ball away? How many chances are there to be at the front of the line? Is there only one ball on the playground to play with? Why does it matter where you are in line? We are all going to the same place anyways.

    Well, what about if someone calls us a mean name? This is a great time to practice using those “I” Messages and ask for an adult to help. Once the problem has been solved - we use the garbage can tool and let it go. We don’t go digging in our real garbage cans, so we don’t go digging in this one either. Once we’re done, we’re done!

    Activity: Alexander and the Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day

    1. Listen to the story below.
    2. Once you are done, one a piece of paper draw or write at least 3 things that Alexander can throw in the garbage can.
    3. Write down more if you can.
    4. Did Alexander really have a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day? Or did he just needed to use the Garbage Can Tool?

    Toolbox Quiz: Can you name a tool that you can use with the Garbage Can tool that will really help you if someone calls you a mean name?

    Tell me below in the comments!

    Comments (0)
  • Personal Space Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 5/5/2020


    Have you been practicing your social distancing and staying six feet apart? Well guess what? You're also practicing the Personal Space Tool. Personal space is about the invisible bubble that surrounds us. It gets bigger or smaller depending on who's around and how comfortable we are with them. We may let some in, while others we may not.

    How does it feel when someone comes into your personal space? What can you do? While we don't want others to be in our personal space, we want to be kind and make sure we do go into other people's personal space too.

    Do you remember how far away you should be from someone if you are talking to them? If you said an arm's length, you're right! If someone is too close we cannot make eye contact to the person we are talking to, but if they are too far we would have to yell in order to be able to hear one another. This is especially hard if we wanted just wanted to talk to our best friends and not everyone else.

     Toolbox Quiz: Complete the toolbox sentence: “I have a ____________ to my ______________ and so do you.”

    Do you know the answer to the Toolbox Quiz? Let me know!

    Comments (4)
  • Empathy Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 4/28/2020

    Now, more than ever we need to use our Empathy Tool. Empathy means being able to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes and being able to feel how they’re feeling. Empathy allows us to show how we can be kind and care for others.

    Sometimes it’s hard to tell how someone else is feeling, so it is important to ask if we are not sure. It could be sad, mad, happy, excited, and exhausted. Can you think of other feelings?

    If you fall down, how does that make you feel? What can you do if you see someone else fall down? If you said, “Help them up”, “Ask if they’re okay”, “Get help”, then you’re using the empathy tool! How do you feel when you win a prize? What is something that you can say or do if your friend wins a prize instead of you? If you said “Say good job!”, “Say Congratulations”, “Say That was great!”. Then you are using the empathy tool.

    We want to make sure that we balance caring for others and for ourselves. What are some other ways you can use the Empathy tool?

    Below is one of my favorite videos explaining empathy, and one of my favorite books to read in the classroom:

    Toolbox Quiz: Who was using the Empathy tool in the book, Those Shoes? How were they using the Empathy tool?

    If you know the answer, let me know in the comments!

    Comments (0)
  • Patience Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 4/21/2020

    Now more than ever, we have to practice the patience tool. What does patience mean? Patience mean being able to wait in a calm way. If we are waiting, but we say, “Mom, are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?” Is that being patient?

    Activity: The Waiting Game

    Materials: Marshmallows, small cookies, or other small food treat.


    1. Everyone gets one marshmallow or small treat of choice.
    2. Student must hold on to his/her marshmallow until the end of the first video (below). If they ate it, they do not get another one. If they still have it, they will be rewarded with a second marshmallow.
    3. Watch the first video.
    4. Reward student if they have NOT eaten it.
    5. Student must now hold on to both marshmallows until the end of the second video (below). If they can, they will be rewarded with a third marshmallow.
    6. Watch video.

    You can try this activity a couple of times to see who has the most patience!



    Toolbox Quiz: Complete the toolbox sentence: “I am ____________ enough to ______________.”

    Did you try the activity? Let me know!

    Comments (0)
  • Listening Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 4/13/2020


    Listening is more than just what it seems. When we are really listening, we are using our entire bodies and are actively listening. How do we do that? By listening with our EARS, EYES, and HEARTS. Listening can be hard, but Simon Says is a great game to help us practice. Think about who you listen to, and how you listen to others. Do you listen to yourself?

    A great review on how to be a good listener:


    Toolbox Quiz: How do you listen with your eyes, ears, and hearts? What are some other great games we can play to practice the listening tool?

    Let me know below!

    Comments (0)
  • Breathing Tool

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 4/7/2020

    We use the Breathing Tool to help calm our minds and bodies so we can relax and make good choices.

    Make sure you are standing or sitting up straight - put your shoulders up back and down. Put one hand over your heart, and one over your belly. Take a nice slow deep breath in and then a nice slow deep breath out, making a little "O" with your mouth. Do you feel you belly moving up and down?

    Breathing Tool Activity: Jellyfish Swim

    Make your own jellyfish swim and check to make sure you are practicing the breathing tool correctly.

    Materials: Paper Plates, Streamers, Black Sharpie or Marker, Glue Stick, and Scissors

    Instructions: Cut the paper plate in half. Cut 8 streamers, about 12 inches long. Then placing the glue only on the top 2 inches of the streamer, glue it to the back of the straight edge. Using the sharpie draw your favorite silly face for your jellyfish!


    My Favorite Breathing Tool Videos:

    Toolbox Quiz: At least how many times should you use the breathing tool before giving up?

    Do you know the answer? Did you make a jellyfish? Let me know in the comments below!

    Comments (0)
  • Toolbox at Home

    Posted by Ms. Yan on 11/30/2017

    The Holiday Season can be a stressful time for many of us, kids included. Thus, it becomes more important that we practice the tools that we have learned at school, at home as well. While Mom's, Dad's, Guardians, Grandpa's, and other family members may not know what these tools are, I highly encourage your to ask your child about them, and even have them teach you a few. Many of our students have become fast toolbox experts.

    The video below is a great example of how Toolbox can easily be translated into home use!

    Comments (0)