Halloween Fright: 3 Ways We Can Embrace ALL Our Spooktacular Emotions

Available for Interviews:  Nadine Levitt

Founder & CEO Nadine Levitt is an education advocate, speaker, and the CEO & Founder of WURRLYedu, an educational technology platform. Nadine specializes in the social-emotional curriculum (SEL) and is also the author of the children’s book series, My Mama Says. Last year, Levitt founded Inspired Educa8ion, a non-profit to support and celebrate teachers everywhere.

What Nadine Levitt can say in an interview about
Navigating Our Anxious Feelings:

Halloween is a much-loved tradition with pagan roots that originated around 2,000 years ago. Most scholars agree that it stems from a Celtic celebration called Samhain, which celebrates the end of the harvest and the start of a new year. However, with Halloween comes some often anxiety-producing images, events, and traditions.

    • Contradictions. It is also a day that presents our kids with contradictions (e.g., it is suddenly okay to take candy from strangers, ignore their fear, etc.)
    • Scary Costumes. Since it often encourages decorations and costumes that would not ordinarily be appropriate for younger kids, it is no surprise that it is a time when many younger kids feel heightened emotions.
    • Navigating Emotions. But it also presents a tremendous learning opportunity as you help your kids navigate those feelings.

Here are some tips on how to talk to your kids about emotions during the Halloween season:

1. Validate Feelings

If they say they are scared, honor it and lean in! Explain that it is perfectly natural to be scared and that it is a sign that they have healthy emotional responses! Fear keeps us safe and alert, but it is crucial that we also pay attention to the other emotions that come along WITH the fear. We never feel one emotion alone—we always feel a myriad of emotions—and they all act as messengers, so ask your child what other emotions they are feeling, along with the fear. For instance, is there also some excitement? Or curiosity as to what lies behind the decoration? Is there worry and anxiety, or amused and awestruck? Or all of the above? Many of these emotions can be conflicting and confusing for children to make sense of.

2. Label Emotions

Research shows that labeling the emotions we feel reduces the subjective experience of the more challenging emotions (Lieberman et al., 2011) and the physical experience (Constantinou et al., 2014). Though labeling is not often easy, offering kids a visual prompt to use a broad vocabulary may be helpful. Engage in conversations with your kid about the nuanced differences between different emotions, and ask them to identify the intensity of each emotion.

3. Visualize Emotions

Lastly, encourage them to write each emotion down (or if they are younger, to draw it out) and think about what they might be trying to signpost for them. Research suggests that writing and emotional processing are linked, so people who write about their emotions gain a new perspective, providing greater understanding and well-being (James Pennebaker & Dr Susan David).


Available for Media Interviews: Nadine Levitt, Founder & CEO

In 2014 Nadine Levitt founded the technology company WURRLY, which also makes WURRLYedu—a leading music education solution being used in schools across 22 states. Nadine has authored two children´s books for social and emotional learning (Inside Me Lives a Village and Inside Me Lives a Superhero), initially developed as a tool to use with her own kids to help them develop positive self-awareness, self-regulation skills, confidence, empathy, creativity, and self-expression. This quickly grew into a school program, with the development of supporting curriculum, classroom resources, toys, and other children’s products that foster a healthy relationship with emotions. Last year, Levitt founded Inspired Educa8ion, a non-profit to support and celebrate teachers everywhere. In this national well program, educators are refueled, inspired, and celebrated when they explore different wellness themes from non-traditional perspectives. Levitt also launched a new initiative and professional development resource for teachers called PD Reimagined. PD Reimagined strives to inspire teachers and celebrate them by putting their mental health and wellness first by connecting them with a supportive community and monthly resources.
     As an education thought leader, Nadine Levitt gives keynote speeches worldwide on the subjects of music education, social and emotional learning, and technology in classrooms.
Find Nadine Levitt on the Web:

educational technology platform: WURRLYedu
professional development initiative: PD Reimagined

My Mama Says Inside Me Lives A Village: Nadine Levitt ...          My Mama Says Inside Me Lives A Superhero

Jo Allison
Managing Editor
Director of Public Relations
Success In Media, Inc.

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