Transcripts for 52 Essential Social Skills Series

Using 52 Essential Social Skills at Home, by Annette

Hi, my name is Annette, and I'm a parent of a 7 year old boy and a 4 year old girl. My seven year old's going into second grade and my four year old is going into pre-K and we picked up these Mind Brain Parenting card decks. It's called 52 Essential Social Skills. And what was nice about these was it actually applied to both my daughter and my son in the same age groups.

One thing that I noticed the second that I got these was the packaging. The packaging is brilliant. It's I think it's aluminum. It's very sturdy. If you're anything like my kids, my 4 and 7-year old are going to spill water at dinner or, you know, milk or anything. These this packaging is not going to get ruined. The other thing that I loved is when you open them up, the cards themselves and you can see they're kind of shiny.

They actually have a coating on them as well. So, again, if they're if you have the cards on the table, like maybe you know, talking and talking with your kids during dinner and they spill something, the cards themselves aren't going to get ruined either. So when we started, we started with these at dinner. And I love it because it was such a great conversational piece for us.

And the one thing that I absolutely adored was that the first card we pulled was about going to a new school. And my both my kids are starting a brand new school this year. And and so that was such a great opener for us. The other thing that I do love is my kids felt like we were playing a game, but there was no wrong answer, so there was no answer key.

They weren't competing against each other. And if they're anything like mine, they like to fight a lot because they're both very competitive. So they didn't feel like they were competing. They were each answering these questions, how they pertain to them or how they saw. And what was nice was because there's no wrong answers. I was able to kind of elaborate if I needed to help them out and kind of give them other options that they could try out while they were at school.

For instance, there's some you know, what would you do if, you know, your teacher didn't you know, you didn't get as good of grades as you wanted to on your spelling test. How would you feel or, you know, even out on the playground, if you're playing with friends and maybe you're disagreeing upon something like what would you do?

How would you handle it? So, you know, for the most part, I think we went through a good half of the deck already and my kids did really well for for the most part. But there were a lot of opportunities for me as a parent to help them out and give them other options. The other thing that I really did like was there was a lot of questions in here that I, as a parent, actually didn't even think to kind of ask them and see where they're at.

So this was a great piece for me, a tool that I could use to see where my kids are at and see how I can help them as well. So yeah, we really, really enjoyed doing these. We cannot wait to finish them and we are looking forward to doing the other sets as well. Thank you.


Using for the Decks During Speech Sessions and Dynamic Assessments, by Adeena Homampour (Speech Language Pathologist)

Hi. My name is Adeena. I'm a Speech Language Pathologist, and I work with students from preschool through 5th grade. I really love using my 52 Essential Social Skills decks. I find that you can use them for a variety of activities. Some of my favorites are as icebreakers for when students first start their speech session. We go around the table and everybody gets to answer a question.

Another great way to use the cards is during a dynamic assessment. When you want to get more information from a student and engage in those conversation skills, the cards are very open ended with their questions, and it helps to learn a lot about what your students are thinking and what their knowledge is with regards to those social skills.

One of my favorite things about them is they're so relatable, like this question: "You're playing soccer, but for some students they're not playing fair. The teacher on duty stops the game and says, no one can play soccer for the rest of the week." "What would you do?" "Why do you need to respect this decision even when you didn't do anything wrong?" These are situations that our students will encounter frequently, and so it's good for them to be able to learn how to answer those questions and what they would do.

I, myself am also a mom of twin 8-year-old boys, and it's something we use at home too. We answer questions while we're driving in the car. They also like to ask each other those questions, and it's really fun to see how they answer and how their answers differ. So I hope that you guys get to enjoy these cards and find even new and different ways to use them as well.


Using 52 Essential Social Situations at Home, by Sapna

Hi, my name is Sapna and I'm the mother of a 4th grader and a 1st grader. I have the pleasure of reviewing 52 Essential Social Situations for grades 3 to 6. So the first thing I noticed when I received this is, you know, it's in a great size tin, fits perfectly in my purse and it has very sturdy cards, nothing flimsy.

So I'm not worried about it tearing with kids. Content-wise, the thing that I enjoyed the most is that it focused both on intrapersonal and interpersonal skills. So really playing towards that notion of building empathy and relationship building, building confidence within children, as well as looking at it from diversity and inclusion, which is so essential in today's society.

I think that's something that is really unique to this, is that it has levels from 1 to 5 by each card. And so although it's aimed at a third to sixth grader, I was able to use a lot of the easier cards on my first grader. And so that was really great. When I looked at it from a content, it was nice for me to be able to see where exactly do my kids need improvement or areas that I feel were strengths when it came to some of that relationship building or, you know, how to handle conflict or bullying, for example.

I think that when I think of it personally, I think of it a lot of as using it as icebreakers and careers and thinking of, you know, how do we really build a team and build the confidence within one another to share ideas in the workplace. And so I would definitely recommend it and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Thanks.

Using 52 Essential Decks at Home and Classroom, by Jennifer (Author, SEL Expert)


Hi. My name is Jennifer Miller. I am founder, author and illustrator of Confident Parents, Confident Kids. And I have so enjoyed using 52 Essential Conversations and some of the other card decks that Dr. Woo has produced with my family and as a professional, and I am especially thrilled with the ones that she has just released. 52 Essential Social Skills, 52 Essential Social Dilemmas and 52 Social Situations.

Because they focus on social skills, our children always need to be practicing and working on social skills. But the pandemic in the past few years has created more isolation and less opportunity for our children and our teens to practice these essential social skills. So this gives families a way, a fun way to rehearse those social skills at home.

We played last night as a family 52 Essential Social Dilemmas. I have a 14 year old and he is new to his school and struggling with building friendships. He is very nervous about making sure he's growing new friendships and it became very obvious as we took on some of the questions like peer pressure, making awkward decisions that he was very unsure about how he might handle friendship situations.

So it was awesome for our family to discuss it and it also set our social emotional agenda for this school year. We know what we can support and encourage in our family life with our son to build his confidence. I will say for educators, if you use a morning meeting or an advisory, these are ideal closing circle. Any time you want to talk about relationships, it is so important as educators that we are creating a safe, caring classroom community and a safe, caring school environment.

These can support you in that mission. So I highly recommend check them out. Thank you, Dr. Woo for putting these awesome resources into the world.

Using 52 Essential Social Situations at Home, by Autumn (Mom of Two Boys)


Hi, my name is Autumn. I am a mom of two boys, ages 9 and 11, in 4th and 6th grade. Recently I had the opportunity to review the 52 Essential Social Situations, and I have to say that we were extremely impressed. I will be honest, I went into it, not quite sure how my boys would take it talking about these types of things.

We opened the deck at dinner one night and kind of just shuffled through the cards that each got to pick. My husband and I picked a few and I have to say, we were extremely, extremely pleased by the questions in there.

In things that we've tried in the past, I feel like it was all very generic situations, especially social situations that are things that they just wouldn't experience. Either they were super outdated situations or just kind of not up to date with, you know, where we're at here, where we live. So going through them, it was a very pleasant surprise to be able to have cards that were actual things that they are facing and that they could relate to. So that was a huge, huge, huge bonus for us.

The boys were super engaged and they really enjoyed answering the questions, my younger one more than my older one. But it definitely got conversations going and it felt like such an easy way to get our boys talking. We did this and the first week of school, so that kind of helped break the ice for what's to come once they get back into school.

I definitely will be ordering a pack of these for myself to continue to use in the future with our boys, because I feel like it is a huge benefit. I would also love to share these as gifts for teachers because I know it's something that could really, really help in class. I know these are conversations that I would even happily have with my children's friends when they're over.

So I highly, highly recommend.

Using 52 Essential Social Dilemmas in Middle School, by Natalie (School Counselor)

Hi. My name is Natalie Stewart and I am a school counselor. I have had the privilege of serving as a school counselor for the past 23 years, and I am always looking for meaning, for engaging resources that can help to promote social and emotional learning throughout our student body. And I'm excited today to review with you the 52 essential social dilemmas, which are cards that will enable you to review which students real life scenarios that they can easily identify with. 

And it can help to promote meaningful conversations and connection with students. Regarding these various topics, the cards have four different themes and they target four different areas. The first two red cards are targeting interpersonal skills such as self-awareness, self-management and the block to shoot well at target social awareness and relationship building. So we're going to be talking about things such as overall mindfulness, emotional regulation and confidence building.

We're going to be talking about healthy relationships, empathy, perspective, taking other cards. We'll take the conversations a little further and we'll discuss things like diversity, equity and inclusion, which is all excellent. When I was reviewing the cards and I was going through the questions and prompts, I really found that all of the scenarios were age appropriate from middle school.

I also found that they were easy to understand real scenarios. So these are things that I can tell you. Last year, my students struggled with hands down. They experienced these things. So very real, applicable relationships are they were easily identified with. So I could see myself easily using this in small groups with students 1 to 1 sessions, lunch brunches, perhaps using them in a classroom setting, engaging the classroom in connection before content.

So we're looking for ways to engage students in circles and connection activities is an excellent, excellent resource. The questions I love to answer will increase in level of difficulty. So some of the questions that I lower in number will be easier to answer. And as the numbers increase, the difficulty might increase. So you will find something for every student in a way that you can engage all students in these conversations.

One of the things that I loved when I looked at this right away, so we are a leader in middle school and we also focus on restorative practices. And two of the questions jumped out at me because I felt it easily aligns with them. The first is taking initiative, so the number one leader in the habit is being proactive.

Being proactive, you're taking initiative. So this question directly aligns with our leader in the program. This is something that students will be easily familiar with. And again, it will take that information a little further with regards to restorative practices and repairing harm and restoring relationships as required. This does make amends. So how do we make amends? How do we restore relationships?

Again, perfectly aligned to the restorative practices, being perfectly aligned for the leader and me, perfectly aligned to the social emotional curriculum that we are utilizing throughout our school. So I found this to be an excellent, excellent resource. I'm super excited to work with these cards and to engage my students. I already have a couple of ideas of how I'm going to do that, but this is a worthwhile resource, and I really think that if you have the opportunity to grab a few of these, I'm actually super excited to look at the other decks and to see how I can utilize those as well.

So again, 52 Essential Social Dilemmas. And again, you can engage your students in real world experiences around mindfulness, emotional regulation, self-confidence, building healthy relationships and much more.

Using 52 Essential Social Dilemmas at Home and On the Go, by Dave (Parent)

Hi, my name's Dave and I have two kids aged 15 and 13. We've been a big fan of the 52 Essential Series, so we're pretty excited about 52 Essential Social Dilemmas coming out as a product. We have taken the 52 Essential Series on road trips. They're so convenient for us to get some dialog started. I myself have been really involved with our kids and kind of a dad who spends a lot of time with his kids and they're obviously super important to me.

I've been really involved and I was really worried at this age, you know, getting into the teenage years, losing that connectivity, losing that ability to really connect with them. And the 52 Essential Series has been great for us to really keep that connection alive and and bring thought-provoking discussion that's that's full of real value as opposed to talking about Marvel or whatever silly things there are.

It's been just really a great way for us to communicate and discuss higher level things. Particularly, we're we're really excited about the this series for my 13 year old being a middle school kid, the Social Dilemma is really put into context some of the emotional intelligence things that we've been working on in the practice. So the Social Dilemma series is all about really giving you some context and real world examples for some of the other discussions that we've had in the past on the 52 Essential Series.

I don't think you'd have to have the prior experience with the others, but it certainly helps to have that background. To give you some context for these social dilemmas, my younger son does struggle with some social situations, really kind of saying the right thing or he has some, some amount of different way that he interacts with kids.

And so this is a great way to identify specific areas where he's struggling. When I had some conversations with him about this, these cards, we were able to kind of go down and see really specifically what types of social situations he would maybe struggle with or maybe not know the right thing to say or, you know, discover together kind of what the right answers were.

So it's been a critical tool for us. I know that a lot of other things that we've tried out there, maybe not as convenient or maybe a little too stiff and formal for us, this hit really hit the right spot and being the right type of tool and the right level of engagement. You know, we've used the other series in the past in discussions and being able to have two sides of two kids, my two boys.

And so they kind of argue each side and we kind of make them switch sides so that they can really get what the other person is talking about. So we've been able to use these these tools. It's been helpful for us to just stay engaged as a family, staying aware of that emotional intelligence. It's something that I feel like is really lost today with so many kids being on screen and so many kids really connecting in an artificial way with people.

They don't really have the context of who they're talking to and within the context of the level of sophistication of who they're talking to. And so, you know, obviously, we think the best way to do that is being really hands on with our kids. And and this is a great tool to do that. It's really tough to come up with up with some of these things on our own.

And so it's been really great for us to to be able to have some of these examples to use. So we're big fans and I think that it's a it's a really valuable tool. Thanks.


Using 52 Essential Social Dilemmas in Therapy, by Shirin (Educational Mental Health Therapist)

 Hi everyone. My name is Shirin Soroush. I'm an Educational Therapist. I currently work in two middle schools with 6th through 8th grade students, and I also am a mother to a one year old girl. I have thoroughly enjoyed using these 52 essential social dilemma cards because I find them to be very practical, realistic and just fun. I really like that the cards are broken up in terms of self-awareness, self-management, social awareness and relationship skills because it allows me to see where the breakdown happens, where my students are showing some strength, and where they might need a little bit help and some skills-building.

One of the cards that I thoroughly enjoyed was called Handling Unfortunate Events. So this one states, "as you were walking onto the stage for your school concert, a peer accidentally bumps into you and causes you to drop and damage your instrument. What emotions would you be feeling and how would you handle this situation?" So I really like how these cards are broken up because there's different skills that are involved in this.

This shows me where my students have strengths and where they might have difficulties. So for example, here they have to know how to identify and label their emotions. They have to be able to utilize distress tolerance skills. And lastly, they also need to be able to utilize effective communication skills and talking to their peer that accidentally bumped into them.

I find these to be very useful because they show me where my students might be lacking some skills and where they might need some additional support. Overall, I have very much enjoyed using these 52 Essential Social Dilemma cards, and I hope that they're very helpful and useful for you as well. Thank you.


Using 52 Essential Social Dilemmas with Friends, by Neko (7th Grade Student)

Hi. My name is Nico and I'm in 7th grade. Today, I'm going to be looking at 52 Essential Social Dilemmas to help tweens succeed in school from 6th to 8th grades.

I really enjoy the design on these cards. I think it's really fun how they're like, they represent what the emotions are and stuff. And also, I didn't realize before that it's kind of like a deck of cards almost. It's got a aces and it's got kings and jacks and queens. And I feel like I can relate to a lot of these social situations.

Like, for example, I do have to deal with a lot of disappointment in my life because sometimes I'm working on a tough math problem, and it's really difficult for me to like get through. And then I realize after I submit the problem because most of my school assignments are on a computer, that I did it completely wrong. And that's tough for me sometimes.

So I really like these cards. They're really fun and they're cute.

So I feel like these cards are really fun, and I could see me and my friend, since we both deal with a lot of the problems that they're saying in here, going through these like an afternoon where we're doing nothing or like at lunch time in school in between periods and stuff, just pulling out one of these cards and discussing one of the topics.

But yeah, I can see me and my friends just pulling these out and playing around with them, discussing the topic, seeing how it affects us in our lives, what seeing what we can learn from these. I feel like a card deck on here that I can really use would be the relationship skills because I've only got like two friends at my school and I feel like in more social situations I could definitely see myself using these cards afterwards to help me learn from my mistakes and see how to make new friends.

Oh, here's a card I can really relate to. I deal with a lot of bullies at my school. There are people who are against who other people are, like LGBTQ or just personalities in general in my school. Apparently it's not the best to be, you know, smart. So I do deal with a lot of bullies in my days at school.

And this card could help me a lot with figuring out how to navigate and get around bad situations with them. I really enjoy this deck. It's a lot of fun. It helps me with a bunch of social situations that I have at school and I think everyone would benefit from having this deck.


Using 52 Essential Social Dilemmas in Middle School, by Rachel (Licensed Clinical Social Worker)

Hi. My name is Rachel. I am a licensed social worker. I work in a middle school and I also work in a private practice seeing individual clients of all ages. I recently received the 52 Essential Social Dilemmas Card Deck, and I've been looking through it to prepare how I'll use it with my students and clients. Middle school is a really tough time for students as they figure out their place and where they belong.

Using these questions can help students understand their own values, their priorities. I find that so each card you look at them, each question has a scenario, a topic, and then questions at the bottom. I find that the questions at the bottom of each card are thoughtful and can be used in social dilemmas that students present themselves, not even just these dilemmas that are given.

When I was reviewing the deck, there are quite a few cards that really stood out to me as they align with the interventions that I already frequently use in my practice. So one card that I find will be used frequently when I'm working with kids is definitely this one. So this is the ace of hearts. As you can see, the topic at the top says Leaving your comfort zone.

And the bottom question reads, What would you do? What's the best and worst that could happen? I love this because one of my favorite things to do with kids is playing the worst case scenario game. It helps to minimize anxiety, helps to plan out how to react in the worst case scenario. Oftentimes, after a kid vocalizes the worst possible outcome, they realize it's manageable and specific steps on how to make it even more manageable.

I find that questions like this in any adult child relationship, whether it's parents or clinicians, also help to build autonomy and independence. Coming up with solutions themselves without adults solving children's problems for them. Another card that I really liked that stood out to me is this one. It's the number six of cards and it's titled at the top Staying Positive.

So after reading the dilemma, the questions at the bottom are, What can you do to get to know classmates who share your interests? And what can you say to yourself to stay hopeful? So I like this card because it's another intervention that I also like to use with children, which encompasses role playing. Helping kids to practice what they can say ahead of time.

And how they can confront difficult situations helps them to feel more comfortable and in control. When a child comes to me after an argument they have with a friend. Role playing helps students to organize their thoughts and explore alternative perspectives. So I find that all of these cards really not just the three that I mentioned, they really encompass a lot of topics that are necessary in all age groups, but particularly ones that are at the beginning finding themselves like this one, which is middle school.

I love that it navigates healthy relationships, finding and utilizing folks that they can trust and setting boundaries and also learning what kind of person they want to be. It helps children to learn solution focused responses and emotional regulation before they reach, fight or flight mode. So I really love this card deck and I would suggest it for professionals and suggest it for teachers and for parents at home as well, because it really helps students remain solution focused.

And that is a professional goal at the end of the day is to help their clients reach their own solutions. So, yes, I love it. Thank you so much.


Using 52 Essential Social Dilemmas in Middle School, by Chris (Counselor)

Hi everybody. My name is Chris Sandoval. I am a counselor at a middle school, I work in a K through 12 setting. I've also worked in the high school level and I'm also currently a professor at a local university here in California. I want to talk a little bit about a resource that I use with the 52 Essential Conversations.

This one is specifically the Social Dilemmas, but I have used some of the other decks as well in this series, and they are actually all fabulous resources and tools for educators. The form factor itself of what this is: it's a deck of cards, and that in itself lends itself to being a wonderful tool because there's a lot of usability that you can get in working with students with a deck of cards, whether you're playing a game or any other use, you can really manage this non-threatening and easy community, easy to connect with students.

It's been a wonderful tool to be able to connect with students--with some of my at-promise students through conflict resolutions. One of the things that I see when I use this with students is that it helps generate conversation that might not have been there originally. Again, you know, as you're using this, you're creating a level of perspective, taking through the different scenarios that are on the deck and with very important topics.

I look at the eight of hearts and I see that this one we're talking about "coping with exclusions." And some of the other topics that I've seen that I really enjoyed is "overcoming the imposter syndrome," "cheering others on," managing words and "experiencing gratitude." So, I mean, all these are really important topics that students are still developing cognitively and being able to go through some real life scenarios in situations that they can connect with.

I think that's really important that these are things that they can connect with and being able to gain perspective taken from what's happening. So that can help generate some of that conversation. So I've had a lot of successes using this. I've used it as well with my students in the graduate program. So again, you use this in many different levels.

Personally, I am also a father of two, so I have 2 girls and I think as parents sometimes it's very easy at the end of the day, you ask: "how was your day?" You get back a generalized good. Well, that's wonderful. But what was good about your day? Having that conversation that day sometimes can be challenging. So I use it with my two daughters, and it's a really good way to just generate conversation with them in a fun way, see what would they do in certain situations.

So again, you know, as an educator, this has been a wonderful tool for me to better connect with my students. And a wonderful tool as a father, as a parent, connecting with my own personal kids. So it's something I would recommend as another tool and be able to connect with those around us. Thank you.