The first exercises simply make your child and you aware of his or her problematic feelings. As soon as these feelings are recognized, the thoughts that followed are described. Thoughts are often enacted upon by acting out or bottling them inside. Examples are when a child has a temper tantrum, becomes insolent or rude, act impulsively, engages in inappropriate behavior (e.g. bullying, using alcohol or drugs, sexual behaviors), and fixates on something that is not helpful, or makes excuses and blames others.
By checking thoughts when they form to see if they are true and appropriate, the child is able to prevent unhelpful behavior before the damage is done. They would have thought about better alternative thoughts and actions ahead of time by learning to regulate their negative emotions and behavior. Also, by being more sensitive to the triggers that come before unpleasant thoughts and feelings, and the body sensations linked to it, children learn to recognize a potential issue in time. As a result, they choose better options that improve their confidence, self-esteem and get things done effectively.
Now, move on to do the first exercise to identify thoughts your child have when they feel bad.