Many Americans have read The Rainbow Fish, an awesome children's book that tells the story of a sparkly fish who learns to share his shiny scales. Today we read the Rainbow Fish and the Blue Whale (El Pez Arco Iris y La Ballena Azul). The whale keeps staring at the beautiful scales on the fish, and they get frustrated that he is staring at them. The fish begin to make fun of him, and he gets sad, and then frustrated and violent. The Rainbow Fish eventually approaches the whale and they discuss what happened. The fish realizes what the whale was doing and the whale realizes that he intimidated the fish. Using this book, we spent the day exploring how to ask others how they feel, how to express our emotions effectively, and how our emotions affect us.
To process how our emotions present in our bodies, we had the girls act out a variety of feelings while the rest of the group guessed what they were expressing. We then drew hearts and talked about how unkind words create wrinkles on our souls. We crumpled the papers with each mean statement the girls came up with. We then "ironed" out or hearts with positive statements using our hands. The girls came to realize the power of their words on their feelings, and they said they felt empowered and joyful as the activity finished. We then used balloons to simulate how stress affects us throughout the day. The girls blew into the balloons while we told them a story, blowing air in when something negative happened to the character, Juana, and letting air out when she used a calming strategy or something positive occurred. Post-story, we discussed how we can't control others actions, but we can work to control our responses and stress reactions. To close the circle, each girl had to compliment the girl to their right, which made them nervous but ended up causing many smiles! It was a beautiful workshop, and Las Yahoskas continue to teach me new lessons each day.