Picture Books about Self-Management and Self-Control
These picture books on self-management illustrate characters regulating their emotions, thoughts and behaviours and working towards personal and academic goals.
Social and Emotional Learning: Self-Management
Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) describes self-management as “the ability to successfully regulate one’s emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in different situations — effectively managing stress, controlling impulses, and motivating oneself. The ability to set and work toward personal and academic goals.”
Self-management helps students recognise how different situations influence their behaviour, emotions and judgments. This recognition help children to respond in constructive ways and regulate their emotions in challenging situations. Those who self-manage themselves show:
- Improved confidence and self-esteem.
- Increased motivation and enthusiasm.
- Increased ability to set and achieve goals.
- Improved study skills and academic performance.
- Pride and confidence in achievements.
- Understanding that meeting goals and challenges is not always easy.
Why Read Picture Books on Self Management?
Picture books on self-management show your students book characters prepared to self-manage, be self-motivated, organised, and show perseverance. The characteristics, which will exhibit in different ways depending on age and experiences, include:
- Managing and controlling emotions, thoughts, and behaviour in different situations.
- Understanding why they feel the way they do.
- Using appropriate strategies for impulse control and regulating emotions.
- Promoting perseverance in personal and academic life.
- Using stress management techniques, such as mindfulness.
- Motivating themselves to persevere in overcoming challenges.
- Understanding they need time and motivation to accomplish goals and challenges.
- Understanding that failure or mistakes are a chance to learn and improve.
- Setting goals, both personal and academic, and working towards them.
- Assessing where they are at and creating new targets.
- Developing organisational skills and sticking to routines.
Questions to use with Picture Books on Self-Management
- What strategies do you use to self-manage your emotions or behaviour?
- What makes it difficult for you (or others) to self-manage?
- How could self-management have a positive impact on your life?
- How can you help others manage their behaviour or emotions?
- Why do you think [character] struggled to control their emotions?
- If [character] had managed their emotions/behaviour, what would the outcome have been?
- What could [character] do to manage their feelings/behaviour?
- Why was it important that [character] persevered during [task/event]?
- What strategies could [character] have used to manage their stress?
- Was it appropriate for [character] to get angry? What would have been a better strategy?
- Why do you think [character] got so angry/jealous/upset?
- What would be a good strategy to help [character] deal with their emotions?
- What could [character] learn from their mistakes?
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Picture Books about Self-Management and Self-Control
Again! by Emily Gravett
This is the first of two picture books on self-management by Emily Gravett. A dragon wants his bedtime story again and again. When his mother falls asleep during the fourth reading, the dragon cannot control his emotions and burns a hole through the back of the book!
Promotes manners, self-management and emotions.
Bug in a Vacuum by Mélanie Watt
A bug is sucked into a vacuum bag as it flies around a house. It goes through the five stages of grief as it tries to come to terms with its situation. Helps children understand the different emotions involved in unexpected and disappointing events.
Butterfly Brain by Laura Dockrill
Gus doesn’t listen to adults, and after being told not to lean back in his chair, he falls and cracks his head. Out of the crack escapes memories of his mother. He realises he has been locking away his emotions about his mother’s death.
The Dog Who Found Sorrow by Rūta Briede
Fergal is Fuming by Robert Starling
The Girl and the Bicycle by Mark Pett
This is the first of two picture books on self-management by Mark Pett. A girl wants to buy a new bike but doesn't have enough money. She helps her elderly neighbour by doing yard work and developing a new friendship. When she has enough money, she rushes to the shop to buy the bike, but to her dismay, it has gone.
The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes by Mark Pett
This is the second of two picture books on self-management by Mark Pett. Beatrice Bottomwell has never, ever made a mistake. Until she makes one huge mistake in front of everyone. Will Beatrice realise it is okay to make mistakes and have more fun at the same time?
The Good Egg by John Jory
Grumpy Pants by Claire Messer
Penguin is having a grumpy day and no one has no idea why. No matter what he does he can't shake his grumpiness off. What is a penguin to do?
Deals with themes of emotions, bad moods and self-management.
The Huge Bag of Worries by Virginia Ironside
Jenny carries a ‘bag of worries' wherever she goes, but it ‘weighs her down'. She tries talking to her family and friends, but they have enough concerns of their own. An old lady helps her open her bag of worries and deal with them.
Kindness Grows by Britta Teckentrup
Kindness Grows illustrates the consequences of our actions, positive and negative. Using a visual representation of a tree, one side of the page shows it flourishing through kindness. The other side shows how negative behaviour creates unhappiness and separation. The book ends with the children on both sides coming together through kindness.
Little Beauty by Anthony Browne
A lonely gorilla learns sign language to communicate with his zookeepers. They bring him a tiny cat called Beauty and the two become inseparable. When the gorilla gets angry, his keepers threaten to separate the pair, until the kitten steps into the keep them together.