Imaginative picture book helps children recognize their inner feelings and discover ways to regulate big emotions.
Inner feelings aren’t always visible on the outside. Dragons on the Inside (And Other Big Feelings) validates young children’s emotions and helps them recognize, describe, and cope when they are anxious or overwhelmed on the inside.
Dragons stomp and breathe fire, roller coasters swoop and swirl, and bats stare from a dark, damp cave. These imaginative descriptions offer children multiple ways for describing their emotion and help them build an inner feelings vocabulary, which boosts emotional intelligence. For children who struggle to recognize their emotions, including some kids with ADHD, autism spectrum disorder, or other processing disorders, it can be especially useful to see another child work through their inner battles and how people “on the outside” can help ease stressful situations.
Throughout the book, readers see the main character’s initial inner reaction to a stressful situation and how it is diffused or diminished through a small act of connection by someone “on the outside.” A section for adults provides additional activities to use with children to reinforce the book’s message.
About the Author
Award-winning author Valerie Coulman leads a creative life, working as a creative arts director, writer, artist, editor, playwright, song writer, photographer, seamstress, teacher, and/or set designer.
Valerie and her husband, Randy, are proud parents of three amazing grown kids and grandparents to one tiny tot, and together they face dragons and sing with toads.
Born and raised on the Canadian prairies, Valerie now lives in beautiful southern Oregon where she enjoys hiking and kayaking when the weather is good, and jigsaw puzzles and a cup of tea when it’s not.
Alexandra Colombo's passion is writing and illustrating poems, fairy tales, and narrative picture book stories.
Alexandra was born in Sofia, Bulgaria, and attended secondary school in Italy, specializing in scientific studies. Alexandra then studied at the Milan European Institute of Design, receiving a degree in illustration.
Alexandra's charming artwork captures the magic, idiosyncrasies, and unique personalities of children and animals in memorable, colorful settings.
2022 Story Monsters Approved Winner
“Full of energy, this vibrant, insightful book will help children identify and understand emotions, and learn how to calm them.” — Judy Cox, award-winning author of Don't Be Silly, Mrs. Millie! and many other books for children
“Delightful and insightful, Dragons on the Inside is a playful way to bring conversations about big feelings into the home or classroom.” — Christie Thomas, homeschool mom and author of Quinn’s Promise Rock
“The delightful and engaging book Dragons on the Inside gives children powerful words and a voice for the feelings they are having inside. With resources in the back, it’s a must-have for every elementary classroom interested in social and emotional learning (SEL) and any parent interested in connecting with the mental health of their child.” — Sheryl Zimmerer, parent, educator, and school administrator
“This much-needed picture book delightfully illustrates how children can navigate their feelings—both negative and positive—successfully. Highly recommended for parents, teachers, and counselors.” — Amy Houts, author of Christian Q&A Book for Kids
“High praise for Dragons on the Inside! With its lyrical text and inviting illustrations, this story models powerful coping skills that my students can relate to and repeat.” — Beth Howell, speech-language pathology assistant
“Whimsical illustrations and imaginative analogies in Dragons on the Inside provide children captivating connections to define BIG feelings--and help them realize they are not alone. The two-page guide at the end delivers excellent strategies for recognizing and taming ‘dragons.’” — Denette Fretz, elementary educator and critically acclaimed picture book author