How Inside Out Helps Kids Express Their Feelings

Inside Out, Pixar’s 2015 movie about five emotions, immediately resonated with audiences. Movie-goers loved the dynamics of the emotions and how they guided their human, Riley, through her everyday life.

But this movie is not just entertainment; it actually helps children express their emotions and understand complex feelings. Child psychiatrists, teachers, and parents have been sharing stories about how their kids/patients/students have been able to connect their feelings to the characters in the film, and better articulate exactly how they are feeling.

In an interview with Newsweek, Columbia University’s Dr. Elisabeth Guthrie talked about how she could use Inside Out in sessions with children. She said, “I thought it was helpful in putting feelings into words, for helping kids identify their feelings and start a dialogue about it. If a kid is feeling sad or if a kid is acting out and they’ve seen that movie, I can use that as a reference point.”

The power of storytelling is incredible. By understanding and connecting with the characters in Inside Out, kids that may not have been able understand, express, or even cope with their emotions now have something to relate to. They can use the emotions they saw on screen to learn more about themselves, and share with others as well.

Have you ever used a Disney/Pixar movie to help your child understand a complicated idea, event, or challenge? If you haven’t, it may be a great tool at your disposal.

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