Resources for Families

Winter Well-Being Series

"A Psychologist's Guide to Winter Well-Being" is a therapist-led video series from Committee for Children to support parents' mental health. The 8-week series is designed to encourage parents to prioritize their mental health as a pandemic winter approaches, offering evidence-based advice and a weekly self-care prescription.

All eight weekly videos feature Dr. Mylien Duong, licensed clinical psychologist and senior research scientist at Committee for Children. Starting December 7, Dr. Duong gives viewers bite-sized self-care tips and guides them through simple practices to improve social and emotional well-being.

• Week 1: Dec. 7, 2020—Self-Compassion

• Week 2: Dec. 14, 2020—Managing Holiday Stress

• Week 3: Dec. 21, 2020—Being Present with Family

• Week 4: Dec. 28, 2020—Resolutions That Stick

• Week 5: Jan. 4, 2021—Setting Your Intentions

• Week 6: Jan. 11, 2021—Making Time for Joy

• Week 7: Jan. 18, 2021—Listening to Understand

• Week 8: Jan. 25, 2021—Expressing Gratitude

SEL Through Play

Prompts for Parents and Caregivers to Weave Social-Emotional Learning into Those Unscripted Summer Moments

The Land of Music

This YouTube TV series, created by board-certified Music Therapists from A Place To Be Family, strives to teach and entertain kids through the healing power of music!

Designed for school age children, pre-k – 5th, this 6- episode animated series provides a platform for families to talk about the continuing COVID virus situation.

The characters take the audience on an educational, inspiring and imaginative journey into The Land of Music. The Land of Music is where music lives and just like in our world, the citizens of The Land of Music are experiencing a very similar life-changing event to their everyday lives; their music is taken away.

We meet J.J., a young man who is from our world and has had to adjust and change his own life because of COVID restrictions. He takes a visit to The Land of Music and helps them find resilience, fortitude and strength. The residents of The Land of Music find out the only way to return their land back to a place without fear and to find their music once again is through the acts of kindness, gratefulness, compassion and of course, Love.

Visit the A Place to Be Family YouTube channel to begin your family's adventure into The Land of Music.

Recommended Websites

Brain Pop - Resources for educators, families, and caregivers including free activities and games for kids, age-appropriate ways to talk to kids about the current pandemic, and adaptable lessons for home and remote learning.

Committee for Children-Free activities to help families continue developing social-emotional skills, while fostering safety and well-being for children.

Experience Happiness - Explore resources to learn more about the science of happiness and activities to put the sustainable happiness skills into practice.

Grow Kinder - A podcast for families and educators featuring conversations centered around social and emotional learning, including mini-episodes specifically designed to cover topics related to the pandemic and supporting SEL at home.

Imagine - A podcast designed to help children and their grown ups grow their social-emotional skills.

InspirED - Over 100+ activities for families to develop social-emotional competencies and well-being. - Designed for families to do alongside children, or for older children to do on their own, Mind Yeti provides a great way for everyone to practice mindfulness during this difficult time.

Parent Toolkit - A resource developed specifically with parents in mind. It’s produced by NBC News Learn and supported by Pearson and includes information about almost every aspect of your child’s development.

PBS Kids - Online games for kids that promote SEL values. Tips and resources for parents, caregivers, and families.

ParenTeen - For families with older children, this resource provides an online experience they can share together. It’s loaded with videos, resources, and useful advice to help teens and the adults in their lives address hot-button topics.

Sesame Street - Tips and strategies to help adults and children navigate challenges and build lifelong skills for resilience.

Sesame Street in Communities - Resources that help children (and adults!) with what matters most in young lives. Explore topics under 3 categories: Difficult Times & Tough Talks, Healthy Bodies & Healthy Minds, and ABC's & 123's.

VDOE: SEL Quick Guide - A quick guide for parents, caregivers, and families for considerations and resources to promote social-emotional wellness. - Activities and conversation starters for families to continue building social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision-making at home.

SEL Practices to Build Competencies at Home

Social-emotional learning is an ongoing process & not simply a strategy to address a specific behavior or situation. Everyday interactions parents have with their children are potential opportunities to build SEL competencies.

Practice at Home:

  • Focus on Strengths- Helping your child identify strengths helps to build self-efficacy & the ability to persist through difficult times.

  • Use Visuals for Planning- Check-lists & other visuals help children see what needs to be done to succeed, as well as experience pride as goals are met.

  • Ask your child about feelings to help students build self-awareness & communication of needs.

  • Stay calm when angry & model calm-down strategies. Explain to your child what you are doing & why.

  • Be willing to apologize & admit when you've made a mistake.

  • Build empathy by encouraging your child to help & share within your family & community.

Source: EdSurge

Home Links are sent home weekly & help parents engage in SEL with their children.

Second Step SEL Home Links for Elementary

Teachers using the Second Step curriculum are engaging parents in SEL through "Home Links". These are weekly updates to provide an overview of skills being taught, suggested questions to ask your child, & activities to do together at home.

The additional resources below are available to parents through the Second Step Parent Dashboard, accessible with the Parent Access Code shared by the teacher.

Free SEL Family Resources from Second Step

Many of the Second Step materials to support SEL are now available for families too! Book lists, songs & games, printable posters and more. Use the following steps to create your account.

How to Create a Second Step Account

  1. Go to

  2. Under New Users, click ”Create Account”

  3. Complete the required fields

  4. Add the Program Activation Key for the grade level of your student:
    Early Learning: SSPE FAMI LY68
    Kindergarten: SSPK FAMI LY70
    Grade 1: SSP1 FAMI LY71
    Grade 2: SSP2 FAMI LY72
    Grade 3: SSP3 FAMI LY73
    Grade 4: SSP4 FAMI LY74
    Grade 5: SSP5 FAMI LY75

Mini-Posters: Visuals for Reinforcing SEL Strategies

Conversation Guide: Steps to Help Families Problem-Solve Using Skills Taught at School

Book Lists: Books for Children & Adults Related to SEL

Games & Songs:

Directions to Games & Lyrics to Songs Taught at School

Online Resources from Committee for Children

Committee for Children has been helping children thrive through social-emotional learning for over 40-years. As creators of Second Step, they continue to provide educators & parents with resources to support SEL at home & in school.

Visit the Committee for Children Blog to learn more.

SEL Through Stories

Many books have messages and lessons linked to the core competencies for social-emotional learning: Self-Awareness, Self-Management, Social Awareness, Relationship Skills, & Responsible Decision-Making. Reading these stories & discussing them with your child is a great way to help build knowledge & skills around these competencies.

For a list of books for social-emotional learning, please click HERE.

Sesame Street Resources

Life comes with everyday challenges, even for our children. Committee for Children (creators of Second Step) and Sesame Street have collaborated to provide parents with resources and strategies to help connect what children learn in school and what they learn at home with their families.

Explore printable downloads, songs, activities, and videos HERE!

Family Guide: General Resilience

Tips for Calming Down, Practicing Patience, & Overcoming Mistakes

Summertime SEL

Ideas & Resources for Families to Continue Social-Emotional Learning Throughout the Summer

SEL Passport

Practice your social-emotional skills any time, any place. This activity is designed for children to explore SEL on their own, as well as with family and friends.

Summer Reading List: A collection of titles for children (Pre-K - High School), as well as books for adults looking for support in their roles as caregivers and mentors.