Saturday, November 1, 2014

Good Free App of the Day: FOCUS On the Go! - Learn about emotions and calming skills as a family

FOCUS On the Go! is part of the FOCUS (Families Overcoming Under Stress) family resilience training model. This free app is one of the many resources available from the UCLA Nathanson Family Resilience Center. Join Buddy Bear, a little brown bear with a lot on his mind. Play games, decorate his cave and earn rewards all while identifying and talking about feelings/emotions and calming techniques. The parent section contains resources on deep breathing techniques, how to hold a family meeting, family problem-solving models and more. This section also contains a series of videos on topics such as emotional regulation and family communication. The app features four skill building games with more than 40 levels allowing children of all ages to participate.

If you would like to play with Buddy while learning ways to strengthen your family, please support Smart Apps for Special Needs by using the link provided:

External links to the developer's website.

From iTunes:

Buddy Bear has a lot on his mind, and he needs your family’s help to talk about his feelings. Play alongside Buddy to practice understanding and sharing your feelings and to collect tools for calming down in challenging situations. 

 FOCUS On the Go! includes a suite of games and resources for everyone in your family. You can have fun together with Buddy Bear while learning ways to help strengthen your families. 

 Bear Necessities 

 Buddy is frustrated because his ball got stuck in a tree. Help him by moving branches on the screen to guide the ball back into your Cozy Cavern. You can collect yummy cherries along the way too! After each level, you can help decorate the Cozy Cavern with all the tools you’ve collected. These things help Buddy feel better when he’s stressed out. Now he has his ball back and really feels at home! 

Comic Creator 

 Do you have a story you want to share with your family and friends? 

Make a comic strip to say exactly what’s on your mind. Choose bear graphics and speech bubbles to make your story come to life. You can even customize your own speech bubble to say exactly what's on your mind. Then share your comic with family and friends through email or Facebook. 

Feeling Finder 

 Buddy is looking for new words to use when talking about his feelings. In this feelings word search, swipe your finger across the letters to make feeling words. Words are hidden backwards, forwards, diagonally and bent around corners. Once you find a feeling word, drag it to its corresponding color zones on your Feeling Thermometer. Green feelings are the ones that feel really comfortable, while red feelings are the ones that feel really uncomfortable. 

 Bear Chill 

 Buddy needs your help to relax! Move Buddy back and forth across the bottom of the screen to catch bubbles with tools to help Buddy cool down. The more tools you collect, the closer Buddy gets to his green zone on the Feeling Thermometer. But look out for the chili peppers! They make Buddy's temperature rise closer towards the red zone. Your goal is to keep Buddy feeling comfortable in the green zone.  


 Parents can learn and play along with your kids. You can watch them while they find feeling words or create a comic. Within the Parent’s section, you can watch videos, download activities you can do as a family, and take surveys to learn more about your family’s strengths. FOCUS On the Go! supports the FOCUS (Families OverComing Under Stress™) family resilience training model. 

 To learn more about ways to build a stronger family using FOCUS On the Go!, visit

Sarah's fabulously creative friend threw the coolest Halloween party last night for 40 teenagers. Non-crafty Sarah was in charge of bottled water. 

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