Thank you so much for enrolling your child in the EQ it UP!™ After School Workshop – one of the first of its kind!


1) Get connected to what we will be doing at the workshop and
2) Ways that you can help your child to practice and reinforce what they will be practicing.

Have you ever had moments where you think everything that goes wrong with your child is your fault? Spoiler alert: it is! Just kidding. The truth is – all children will struggle at times due to a mixture of their nature and nurture. Especially when their nature and nurture is having to interact with other kid’s nature and nurture – it can be overwhelming and chaotic! The most important thing for you to know is: no matter what challenges they have – you are part of the SOLUTION! And the following information will support you with ways to do that. Let's help your child THRIVE!

Part ONE: Overview of the Brain, Emotional Intelligence (EQ), and the Wave of Yuck™

Book Recommendation: The Whole-Brain Child by Daniel J. Siegel, MD and Tina Payne Bryson, PhD

According to Siegel and Bryson – there are four parts to the whole-brain: Left, Right, Upstairs, and Downstairs.
The goal is to get these four parts integrated.

Left and Right Hemispheres

As you can see in the diagram, the Left Brain’s role is to focus on logic, literal, linguistics, and putting things in order (linear).

The Right Brain is connected to emotions, gut instinct, the meaning and feelings of the situation, the felt sense.

The goal is to strengthen and support each side, and help them to stay in balance.


As you can see in the diagram – the Upstairs Brain is more sophisticated and evolved.

You will see more thinking, analyzing, and Responding. While the Downstairs Brain is more primitive – where you will see more Reacting.

The goal is to strengthen and nurture the ability for your child to stay in the Upstairs Brain, as well as practice tools to stop the Downstairs Brain from hijacking the Upstairs Brain!

Overview of Emotional Intelligence (EQ):

All of our workshop goals – and all that is needed to integrate the whole brain – is linked to developing your child’s EQ.

Some fun EQ facts:

  1. EQ is not something we are born with – it can always be developed, no matter what age. However, supporting this at an early age sets your child up for success in a more holistic way (physically, mentally, emotionally, and socially).
  2. 54% of success is determined though emotional intelligence.
  3. Success in their career can largely depend on their EQ. It is the new yardstick for a strong employee, specifically in leadership positions.
  4. EQ supports with Resiliency and Stress-Care (say “no” to Toxic Stress)!
  5. Men and Women seem to be balanced in different ways when it comes to EQ. Women tend to be more empathetic, self-aware, connected to emotions, and stronger in their interpersonal skills. Men tend to be more motivated, self-confident, and have a stronger sense of capability. *This is why I decided to create a separate class for boys and girls – they need different EQ development!
The Five Components of Emotional Intelligence:
Self-Awareness: The ability to be aware of their emotions, capabilities, needs, and wants. To have a strong sense of self. Self-Regulation: The ability to be flexible, resilient, and active when it comes to a challenging moment. To self-soothe; respond versus react.
Motivation: The ability to take initiative and be a go-getter. Note: We are living in a time where children are more protected, parents are more involved, more aware. Sometimes they over do it. With this in mind, children may end up doing less on their own – less independent and motivated. Teaching street smarts and independence is crucial.
Empathy: The ability to show compassion and true understanding for other’s thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Social Skills: Interpersonal skills; the ability to engage with others, adapt to different social situations, communicate clearly, and resolve conflicts.

Emotions are like waves

We never stop experiencing the Waves of Yuck1 in life. They come up, seemingly out of nowhere, and can thrash us if we do not have any self-care.

For children these waves can come up in moments that might seem miniscule to us – but they are very serious to them. The goal is to NOT GET STUCK in the YUCK – or SUCK in the YUCK - and HELP THE WAVE GO AWAY SO YOU CAN HAVE A BETTER DAY. We want our children to learn how to ride these waves in a healthy way, versus expecting them not to happen, or fighting them. We want to help each wave pass, so we can be in the YUM and avoid stress build-up (aka toxic stress)!

Part two: How You Can Support Your Child:

The overall goal of this workshop is to plant the seeds of self-awareness, self-care, self-confidence and uplifting the self and others. The retention and practice of what they learn – the watering of the seed – will mostly happen at home!

Tools parent/guardians can use to support when the child is Stuck in the Yuck:

Connect then Redirect: When your child is upset (aka in a Wave of Yuck), connect first emotionally - right brain to right brain. Mirror feelings and use non-verbals (hugs, facial expressions). Then, once the wave has passed and they are more in control, you can redirect: bring in the left-brain lessons and discipline. This is when you can set a boundary, make a request, and/or talk about a plan when something like that happens again.

Story-telling: Let them share again and again and again. When your child is riding the big Wave of Yuck help her to tell the story of what is causing the upset. This will help her to use both left and right hemispheres: using the left brain to make sense of things, put things in order and use words and logic. The right brain contributes the bodily sensations, raw emotions, and personal memories. By acknowledging and naming feelings, it uses the whole brain. You can help to guide them along – giving them a menu of feelings and thoughts to choose from (Were you feeling sad then? Was that frustrating?).

The tools your child will learn in the Workshop – that you can do with them:

We will do many fun and educational activities to increase their EQ and self, social, and emotional awareness. Here is the main tool they will practice daily:

The Stress Relief Breath (SRB): Instructions:

  • Identify the emotion
  • Take a sharp inhale through the nose bringing all the negative feeling up
  • Let out a long exhale using one of the three ways listed below:

…with an aaaahhhhh sound
…with the growwwwl (totally acceptable in publicJ)
…with tense and release and Shaking it Out (aka the Stress Relief Breath-Shake it Out Combo2). Tense your whole body up or squeeze a pillow on the inhale, let out the aaaahh sound or groowwwl on the exhale while shaking out your arms and legs. If you’re sitting, you can just shake out your hands and arms.

(Here's a video of the SRB I made when I first started at Hope in 2014. An updated one to come)!

Getting Quiet Inside: Each week we will spend time getting quiet inside through breathing and a guided imagery. The imagery will have the same message, which is to bring on the calmness. There will be a cool code word that will trigger them to “put their lips together and breathe through their nose”. By the end of the workshop, they will have a solid linking to the specific word and the action of putting their lips together and breathing in “I’m okay” and “I got this.” Hint: ask them after the first class what their cool code word is!

With all of the above information in mind, here are our main workshop goals. *Remember, we are planting the seeds – they will need you to help keep them watered and growing:  

  • Teach them simple tools they can implement in their daily life
  • Help them to develop a daily pro-active regimen of self-care
  • Help them to be balanced in the Left and Right Brain
  • Help them to take care of themselves when the Downstairs Brain tries to hijack the Upstairs Brain!
  • Help them to learn about Resiliency and Flexibility
  • Help them to learn and practice Stress Care, and avoid toxic stress.
  • To support your child with understanding stress release and self-love – and practicing ways to nurture both!
  • Learn how to ride the Waves of Yuck in a healthy way!
  • Support them with breaking the gender norms when it comes to EQ!
  • Do all of the above while relating and focusing on specific situations that they will experience in their self, social, and emotional development. We want to Make it Real for them using their true-life experiences!

We look forward to this experience! Please let us know if you have any questions at all. Contact Aimee via email or text (for shorter conversations): (760) 803-3600.

1 Wave of Yuck and 2 Stress Relief Breath-Shake it Out Combo © 2017 Aimee Le Zakrewski Clark/The Growth Vigilante

want to be a facilitator?

We will be hiring and training facilitators from San Diego to Los Angeles to begin implementing the EQ it UP! Uplifting School Workshop for the 2018-19 school year. The ideal candidate will: LOVE working with children, have experience with group facilitation, have an interest and passion for Emotional Intelligence (EQ), and/or have educational and/or counseling background and experience. Please email today if you are interested! We are hoping to do a training around the 3rd or 4th of August in the Carlsbad area.


All curriculum has been created, and is the intellectual property of  Aimee Clark and AZ GROWTH and The Growth Vigilante. Aimee is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist with a focus on Holistic Psychology. She has been in practice since 2002, taking special interest in Emotional Intelligence and self, social, and emotional wellness.


We at The Growth Vigilante are proud to be affiliated with The Great Uplifters Team Gives™ and The Girl Uplifters Team™. We will donate 10% of all income generated from EQ it UP!™ to them! Founded by Aimee Le Zakrewski Clark, and her daughters Maya & Olivia - the goal is to support children with uplifting themselves and others. Read on.


Free 20-minute consultation to determine the specific needs of your school or organization!