Skills Building: Happy Right Now (PK-5)


Written by Julie Berry, illustrated by Holly Hatam

Pre- Reading Questions 

  1. What are some things that make you happy? 
  2. What can you do when you are feeling sad? 
  3. Sometimes when we are feeling sad and disappointed, it can help to make a list of things that help you feel grateful. What are some things that make you feel grateful?
  4. Sometimes we have big feelings that are caused by sad situations that can’t be “fixed” or changed. Think of a time you felt that way, now take one big deep breath in, and let it out. Repeat this a few times.

Post- Reading Questions

  1. The girl in the book shared how she can look on the bright side, be happy right now, and make the best out of a bad situation. Give an example of a time you made the best out of a bad situation. 
  2. Sometimes, our feelings are too big to look on the bright side and be happy right now. What are some things that you can do to calm your body down and start to feel better? 
  3. What were some of the things that the girl in the story did when she had big feelings? What strategies do you have? 
  4. What did you learn from this book?

Creative Enrichment Activity: Happy Right Now Umbrella (PK-5)


 In the book Happy Right Now, the main character talked about how she can often decide to look on the bright side and be happy right now. But sometimes, her emotions are too big and looking on the bright side doesn’t work. In these cases, she uses her calming techniques and coping mechanisms to manage those big emotions. What are some calming strategies that you use when you have big emotions?


  • Paper plates (one half per student)
  • Stamp/ink pads (various colors)
  • Markers 
  • Pipe cleaners
  • String
  • Raindrop template (4 per student)
  • Scissors

Duration: 40 minutes (for staff: 5 pre-activity setup,10-15 minute prep)

  • 5 minutes: Introduce the activity using the book and examples
  • 10 minutes: Decorate the plates with the stamp pad and markers
  • 10 minutes: Cut out and write or draw calm down techniques on the raindrops
  • 5 minutes: Glue string to raindrops and to umbrella/glue on the pipe cleaners (3-5)
  • 5 minutes: Clean up
  • 5 minutes: Reflect


  1. Introduce the activity using the book and the examples. Have a quick discussion about ways to calm down and calming techniques that you use. 
  2. Each student decorates one side of their half-plate with markers and stamp pads. The design in the example was used by pressing the thumb or forefinger into the stamp and then pressing it to the plate. 
  3. Provide hand wipes or have students wash their hands before proceeding to the next step. 
  4. Students cut out their raindrops. 
  5. Students write or draw their calm down techniques on each raindrop. 
  6. For older students: students glue or tape a piece of string to each raindrop and glue it to the back of the umbrella.
  7. Glue pipe cleaner to the back of the plate to create the umbrella handle. 
  8. Clean up the materials. 
  9. Reflect.

Reflection Questions

  • What calming strategies did you write or draw on the raindrops? 
  • Share your umbrella with the person sitting next to you? 
  • Did you hear or see any others with some of the same coping mechanisms as you? 
  • Why is it important to have calm down tools?

Sample: PK-2

Umbrella Sample PK-2

Sample: 3-5

Umbrella Sample 3-5