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What Can We Do?

The many emotions young children can experience in a day are addressed in fun and loving ways.

Photo of Danielle Trullinger
9 2

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What can we do when you’re feeling happy?

Hold my hands and sing a song. Deedle dee, doot doo-doo!

Dance with me! Should we go fast or slow?

I like the way your feet are bouncing.

What can we do when you’re feeling scared?

Cuddle in a blanket. Our arms will hold each other.

You are snuggled so close to me!

Do you know that you are safe? I am with you.

What can we do when you’re feeling angry?

Find a quiet place. Will you tell me how you feel?

Your mouth is not smiling, and your eyebrows are down.

It’s okay if you are mad. That happens sometimes.

What can we do when you’re feeling sad?

Sit with me. You can cry if you want. Being upset feels hard.

Let’s be balloons and fill up with air. 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 5. Now breathe.

You did that just right. Breathing helps us feel calm. 

What can we do when you’re feeling excited?

I’ll blow bubbles. Try to catch them. Jump high. You did it!

Do you want a turn to blow? Here's the wand.

Wow, what a big bubble! That's great. High five!

What can we do when you’re feeling tired?

Find your favorite book. I’ll read the words to you.

Will you tell me about the pictures? It’s fun to look at books together.

Put your pajamas on. It’s time to tuck in bed. How about a kiss?

I love you so! Good night!

Describe the intended vision for your early childhood book manuscript in 1-2 sentences

This book will help caregivers assist even the youngest children to begin identifying the emotions they feel, take steps in building skills to process them and return to a calm state, and let children know they are safe and loved.

Share your suggested book title

What Can We Do?

How has this book been informed by early childhood language development research and evidence? (response minimum 250 Characters)

This story gives names to the feelings children might experience. It teaches that having these feelings isn't wrong but can seem overwhelming. Coping techniques and self-talk are shared in simple, clear language that helps young children start to learn skills of self-regulation.

How have you crafted this manuscript to resonate with and/or reflect the experiences of those living in urban contexts? (optional question)

The feelings, responses and activities expressed in this book can be applied to any child and caregiver in any place.

Location: Country


Location: State or Department


Location: City

Eau Claire

Tell us more about you / your team

I am an educator and life long learner who especially has a heart for the birth-to-five age group. My hope is to help the emotional development of children and to grow and strengthen the relationships they have with their caregivers.

Provide an example visual identity for a look and feel you might like to achieve. ( (optional question, 3-5 visuals)

Multiple Choice - Have you been previously published (online, self-published, and print included)?

  • No

Do you have an agent?

  • No

How did you hear about the Challenge? (optional question)

  • Someone in my network (word of mouth)

What best describes you? (optional question)

  • I am/we are creatives, writers, or artists


Join the conversation:

Photo of Itika Gupta

Hi Danielle Trullinger  Welcome to the Challenge Community!
Loved how your story addresses the various emotions and also give them an action to respond them.
How might you evolve your manuscript to introduce new nudges of engagement and interaction for caregivers, to help them with their child’s learning development as they narrate the story? You can find some inspiration in the Final Toolkit and Challenge Resources on the main challenge page.

Photo of Danielle Trullinger

Thanks for the advice. I thought about the story for a few days and made some changes and additions.

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