One idea for helping kids deal with fear and anxiety is to create a Worry Bot. The idea is simple and provides a way for kids to both talk about their fears and to track them.
Here’s how it works:
- Build a Worry Bot (or Worry Warrior or Worry Monster). Use can use any sort of boxes or containers so long as the child can put small pieces of paper in the Worry Bot and retrieve them later. We wrapped the lid on both the body and head of Worry Bot separately so it can be removed to insert and remove the papers.
- Have the child write (or draw) things they are worried or anxious about on the pieces of paper and put them inside the Worry Bot.
- As the child is recording their fears, talk to them about each one.
- Put the worries inside of Worry Bot. As you, talk to the child about ways they can deal with their anxiety.
- Revisit each fear with the child from time to time. As they express that they have moved past an item or overcome that worry, remove that slip of paper from Worry Bot and have the child throw it away.
This idea was originally inspired by Crayola and their Worry Worrier. You can find other examples by searching for Worry Monster. Use your imagination and work together to make your own Worry Gobbler.
We opted for a Worry Bot, and here’s how we put him together:
- The boxes for the body and the head (as well as the four “legs”) were craft boxes we bought from Hobby Lobby. We bought them for ease, but you could easily re-purpose some empty shipping boxes or anything else you have around the house.
- We used textured paper (also from Hobby Lobby) to give our Worry Bot more of a three-dimensional look. Originally, we had intended to wrap the boxes like gifts, but in the end used decoupage to attach the paper to the boxes.
- The arms were rectangular piece of paper folded with hands cut out of the black textured paper we used for the hat.
- The lettering was a cheap package of stickers which seemed easier than cutting them out individually.
- Add a face and a couple of wiggly eyes, and your Worry Bot comes to life.