Social Skills Strategies

Calm it Down (grades 5-6)






Dealing with Anger

Being angry is O.K. Everyone gets angry sometimes. Dealing with anger appropriately is important to maintaining friendships.

To deal with anger, you:

1.   Stop.

2.   Take a deep breath.

3.   Let it go.

4.   Think "What is happening here?"

5.   Make a plan.

·   Wait it out.

·   Talk it out.

·   Walk it out.

·   Apologize if you need to.

6.   Do it.

Offering Help

It is kind to notice when others might need your help and then offer to help them. To offer help, you:

1. Notice if someone needs help.

a. Look at what they are doing.

 b. Look at their body language.

c. Listen to their words and voice tone.

 2. Use a friendly voice.

 3. Ask if you can help.

4. If the person says "yes," then help.


Reading Body Language

A persons face and body gives clues to what he or she is feeling and thinking. These clues- body language- help you decide what to do and say.

To read body language, you:

1.Look for clues in:

a.   the face

b.   gestures

c.what the body does

2.Recognize the clue.

3.Understand the clue.

4.Respond to the clue.


Letting Others Talk

When communicating with others it is important to take turns.  You should talk and then listen. 

1.   Look at the person

2.   Use a pleasant face and body.

3.   Don't interrupt.

4.   Nod or smile

5.   Ask questions, if needed.


Reading the Feelings of Others

A person's body language and voice gives clues to what he or she is feeling.  Reading these feelings helps you.

To read feelings of others, you

1.   Look for clues:

a.  Read body language.

b.  Listen to the tone of voice.

c.Listen to the words.

2.   Recognize the clue.

3.   Understand the clue.

4.   Respond to the clue.  


Asking for Help

It is okay to ask for help.  Sometimes other people havedifferent ideas and information that might help to make your task easier. 

To ask for help you:

1.Recognize you need help.

2.Think of who can help. 

3.Move close to the person.

4.Say the person's name.

5.Ask in a friendly voice.  Tell the person what you need help with.

6.Say:  "Thank you."


Dealing with Mistakes

Making mistakes is O.K. Everyone makes mistakes sometimes.

To deal with a mistake, you:

1.Take a deep breath.

2.Keep calm.

3.Think "It's a mistake; I can handle it."


a.Ask for help.

b.Try again.

c.   Admit your mistake, apologize and try to correct it.

d.Accept another's apology.


Receiving a Suggestion

A suggestion is an idea spoken in a respectful way. Sometimes a suggestion is given to encourage someone to do something different.

To receive a suggestion, you:

1.   Stay calm.

2.   Listen carefully to the suggestion.

3.   Make no excuses.

4.   Respond to the suggestion:

a.   Thanks for the suggestion.

b.   Let me think about that for a minute.

5.   Do

a.   Follow the suggestion.

b.   Explain your behavior.

c.   Suggest what to do now

d.   Correct a mistake.

e.   Apologize.

6.   Remember:

a.   There is more than one right way.   


Dealing with Teasing

Teasing can be friendly, such as joking around or unfriendly, such as name calling and making fun of someone.  You may feel angry, upset, embarrassed, left out or sad.  It hurts your feelings.

To deal with teasing, you:

1.   Take a deep breath.

2.   Keep calm.

3.   Think: "I can handle this."

4.   Choose:

a.   Ignore.

b.   Walk away.

c.Ask the person to stop in a strong way.

d.   Find a different activity.

e.Use a sense of humor.

f.   Seek help.

5.Do it.   


Saying "No" and Resisting Peer Pressure

Sometimes you have to say "NO" to a friend who is making a bad choice.  It's hard, but it is important to make the right choice for you.

1.   Look at the person.

2.   Use a calm voice and take a deep breath.

3.   Decide what the problem is and how you feel.Say clearly that you do not want to participate.

4.   Suggest something else to do.

5.   If necessary, continue to say "NO."

6.   Leave the situation.


Disagreeing Appropriately

It is okay to have different ideas or disagree with a friend as long as you are polite and look for a win/win solution.

1.   Look at the person.

2.   Use a pleasant voice.

3.   Say "I understand how you feel."

4.   Tell why you feel differently.

5.Give a reason. Listen to the other person .



Sharing is hard to do, but you know you are learning to be a good friend when you can share.

1.   Decide what you want or have been asked to share.

2.   Look at the person who wants you to share.

3.   Ask," Would you like to play with (this part of my game, activity etc.) with me?"

4.   Make room for the person to join you and give him or her thing you have decided to share.


Giving a Suggestion

A suggestion is an idea spoken to another person in a respectful way.

To give a suggestion, you:

1.Decide if you have something to suggest.

2.Use a friendly face and voice.

3.Make the suggestion.

a.I think…

b.I wonder…

c.What about…?


  There is more than one right way.


Showing Interest in Others

It is friendly to show interest in others, especially when you want to be a friend to someone.

To show interest in others, you:

1.Use a friendly face and voice.


3.Ask a question, or comment about:

a.   What the person is doing.

b.   What the person is thinking.

c.How the person is feeling.


How to Make a Friend

Being a friend is a lot of work.  To have friends you must treat others like you want to be treated

1. Go to where another person is doing what you like to do

2.Smile and tell the other person your name

3.Say something nice.

4.Ask the other person if you can play with him or her

5.Share and compromise

6.Give compliments and be encouraging.

7.Be a good sport if you are playing a game.

8.Plan another activity.

9.Remember to use a friendly face and voice.


 Best Test Tips

1.   Get a good night's rest.

2.   Eat a nutritious breakfast.

3.   Arrive at school on time.

4.   Listen to and follow all directions.

5.   Think carefully about each item.

6.   Carefully mark the best answer choice on EVERY item.

7.   Use entire allotted time wisely.

8.   Does each item have an answer marked?

9.  Relax and think positive during the test.  


Using Humor

Having fun with your friends is fun.  It is important to use humor at the right time.  You should not use humor to tease someone or hurt their feelings.

1.   Decide if the situation, joke or story is funny.

2.Laugh or smile appropriately. 

3.Think of the setting you are in.  (classroom, recess, lunch)

4.Make sure you notice the body language of the people around you. If they are not laughing or smiling, you might want to think about what you said and if it was appropriate for the situation.


Using "I Messages"

It is important to tell your friends and family how you feel.

To use an "I" message, you:

1.Look at the person.

2.Say, "I feel…"  say how you feel.

3."When…"  say what they did.

4."Please…" say what will fix the problem.

It feels good inside to be honest!!!


Being a Good Sport

Everyone likes to win. Sometimes you win and feel happy. Sometimes you lose and feel disappointed. It's okay. Everyone tries to be a good sport when they lose. Remember to follow the rules and give everyone a chance to play.  Encourage others when you can.

To be a good sport, you:

1.   Keep a friendly face and voice.

2.   Take a deep breath to stay calm.

3.   Think: "I'm disappointed but I can handle this."

4.   Make a plan:

a.   Congratulate the other players.

b.   Say "Good game."

c.   Think: "Maybe next time." 


Being Flexible

There are many ways to do something. Being flexible is very important when working with others and when solving problems.

To Be Flexible, you:


2.Take a deep breath.

3.Let it go.

4.Think: "What is happening here?"

5.Make a plan.


a.There is more than one right away.

b.There is always another way.


Apologizing Sincerely

Sometimes we make mistakes or hurt people's feelings.  It takes a lot of courage to say, "I'm sorry".

1.   Decide to whom I need to apologize.

2.  Look at them eye to eye.

3.  Call them by name.

4.  Say, "I'm sorry!" using a clear, kind and sincere voice.

5.  State the reason I am sorry.

6.  Try not to repeat the mistake or accident. 

7.  Say "Thanks for listening."


Staying on Task

Staying on task means paying attention and continuing to work until the task is finished, or until it is time to do something else.

To stay on task, you:

1.Listen carefully to the directions.

2.Ask questions when you do not understand.

3.Look at the task.

4.Show you are working.


Completing Work on Time

    1.  Work quietly, carefully and in a timely way.

2.    Ask yourself, "Is all my work finished?"

3.    Look over each question or problem to be sure.

4.   When you are sure your work is completely finished, check to see that your name is on it.

5.   When finished and your name is on your work, hand it in.

6.   Say to yourself, "Good for me!  I finished all my work.


Clean Desk

Having a clean desk will help you stay organized.  It will also help you to find your school work and school supplies.

1.   Stack items from big to small.

2.Keep all pencils, erasers, etc. in a container.

3.No papers or trash sticking out from folders or desk.

4.Keep desk top and floor area clean and neat.

5.Put papers in designated area to take home to show family.

6.Take time between subjects to put work away.  


Dealing with a Problem

Problems are like surprises that can happen to anyone at anytime. There are many ways to deal with problems. When one way doesn't work, try another way.

To deal with a problem, you:

1.Stay calm.

2.Think: " This is a problem. What is happening here?"

3.Sort out the problem.  Listen and share feelings.

4.Think of different ways to manage the problem.

5.Choose the best way.

Choose another way if the first way doesn't work.


Giving Encouragement

Sometimes people feel sad or discouraged, especially when things are not going as they expect them to. It is friendly to show concern and give encouragement to others.

To give encouragement, you:

1.Read the person's feelings.


3.Use a friendly face and voice.

4.Make a hopeful comment such as,

a."Nice try."

  1. b."You can do it."

c.   "It will be O.K."

d. "You'll get it."  


Giving and Receiving Compliments

Compliments make people feel good.

To give a compliment, you:


2.Use a friendly face.

3.Use a sincere voice.

4.Say what you like about what the person did.

To receive a compliment, you:



3.Say "Thank you."


Being a Good Audience

1.   Sit politely:  Ask myself, "Is my body still, are my hands in my lap, and is my voice off?

2.   Watch what is taking place.

3.   Listen to what is being said.

4.   Talk only if asked to do so.

5.   Use polite responses:  

Is my laugh appropriate?  

                      Am I clapping at the appropriate times?

6.   Enter and leave the gym quietly.


Starting a Conversation

When you see someone you know, or meet someone new, it is polite to converse on a topic both of you can talk about.

To start a conversation, you:

1. Look friendly (relax) and smile.

2. Choose a common, shared topic. (movies, books, sports, school activities, hobbies, homework, games, etc.)

3. Begin with a greeting.

4. Ask a polite question or make a polite comment.


Exchanging Conversations

When you exchange conversation, it is courteous to take turns talking and listening.

To exchange conversation, you:



3.Talk about yourself.

4.Ask about others.

5.Take turns talking and listening.



Sometimes you have to wait.  When this happens, you can make a waiting plan and do something else for a little while.

To wait, you:

1.Stay still, quiet and calm.

2.Think:  "It is hard to wait, but I can do it.

3.Make a waiting plan.

4.Do it.



Cooperating is working together on the same activity. When people cooperate, everyone has a job and no one is left out. It means making a plan that everyone can accept. The plan may not be the one you like most.

To cooperate, you:

1.Listen to the directions.

2.Use a friendly face and voice.

3.Listen to others' ideas.

4.Tell your ideas.

5.Make a plan.

6.Do it.



Compromising is coming to an agreement with others that is acceptable to everyone.

To compromise, you:

1.Think of a way everyone can do part of what they want:

a.Do each idea.

b.Take turns.

c.  Give up part of what everyone wants.

d.Do something different.

2.Use a friendly face and voice

3.Exchange suggestions.

4.Come to an agreement.

5. Do it. 


Common Courtesy

Saying Thank You

1.   Decide whose help you need.

2.Use a friendly voice.

3.State what you are thanking them for.

Saying Please

1.Decide whose help you need.

2.Use a friendly voice.

3.Begin your request by using please.

Saying Excuse Me

1.   Decide when and to whom you need to say excuse me.

2.Use a friendly voice.

3. Begin your statement with Excuse Me. 



Party Manners

1.  Say, "Thank you," when served and to room helpers for assisting with the party.

2.  Eat politely.  Use please and thank you.

3.  Handle drinks carefully.

4.  Use quiet voices when playing games.

5.  Seconds only when offered.  

6.  Make sure your area is clean when finished.

7.  When playing games, be a good sport.

Listen to adult helpers and follow the rules.


  Ending a Conversation

To end a conversation, it is courteous to give a simple explanation and use a farewell.  

To end a conversation, you:

1.Wait for a pause.


3.Give a short, simple explanation.

End with a friendly farewell


 Using Kind Words

It is friendly to use kind talk when speaking to others, especially when you want others to think you are friendly.

To use kind words, you:

1.Look at the person.

2.Use a friendly face.

3.Use a calm voice.

4.Use nice words. 


Following Directions

When someone tells you what to do, they are giving you directions. To follow directions, you: 
 1. Look.
 2. Listen. 
3. Ask questions if you need to.
4. Do it now.


Entering a Conversation

When you enter a conversation, it is polite to briefly talk on the same topic that the others are talking about, not a different topic.  

To enter a conversation, you:



3.Wait for a pause.


5.Speak for a short time on the topic.  



Showing you are listening helps the speaker know that you paying attention to what he or she is saying.

To show someone you are listening, you:

1.    Look at the speaker.

2.Use a friendly face.

3.Stay still, quiet and calm.

4.Think about what is being said. 


Joining In 
Sometimes it is fun to join a group and do what the others are doing. 
To join others, you: 
1. Move close. 
2. Watch. 
3. Wait. 
4. Ask, if "yes" join in. 5. Ask if "no" do something else.


Inviting Someone to Play 
It is fun to play with others rather than alone. To play with others, you ask someone to join you.

To invite someone to play, you: 
1. Choose someone. 
2. Walk close. 
3. Smile. 
4. Ask. 
5. If "yes" go play. 
6. If "no" ask someone else.

To answer someone who wants to play, you: 
 1. Smile. 
2. Look. 
3. Answer.


Manners in the Cafeteria 
1. Enter and exit the cafeteria quietly. 
2. Be prepared to pick up condiments. 
3. Say, "Thank you" when served. 
4. Remember to say, "Please" when asking for something 
5. Eat politely. 
6. Handle your drink carefully. 
7. Use condiments wisely. 
8. Talk quietly to those seated around you. 
9. Remain seated at your table when finished until dismissed for your fitness break. 
10. When dismissed clean table and floor area of any trash. 
11. Make sure silverware is put in the silverware shoot for cleaning.


Riding a School Bus 
1. Stay seated at all times, (feet on floor). 
2. Keep aisle clear. 
3. Talk quietly only to those seated with you. 
4. Complete silence at railroad crossings. 
5. No eating or chewing gum. 
6. Do not open windows without permission. 
7. Keep entire body inside windows. 
8. Listen to the bus driver. 
9. Be friendly and kind to everyone on the bus. 
10. Wait patiently if your bus is late.



When you meet someone new, it is polite to introduce yourself to him or her. 
To introduce yourself, you: 
1. Smile. 
2. Look at the person. 
3. Say: "Hi, my name is____. What's your name? 
4. Listen to the answer and say: "Hi, ____, it's nice to meet you.


When you enter a room, see someone you know or meet someone new, it is polite to greet him or her. To greet someone, you: 
1. Smile. 
2. Use a friendly voice. 
3. Look at the person. 
4. Say "Hi" and the person's name.