Not Just a Book: How to Use I Soar with Wings as a Teaching Tool

I Soar With Wings is the perfect medium to introduce social emotional skills to students. Inside the book are Words To Live By, a kid-friendly language designed to teach kids the five core competencies of SEL in a fun and engaging way. Using Words to Live By, kids will have the language to use the skills they are learning and apply them to everyday moments.

This book isn’t just for kids! Adults like teachers and program staff, as well as parents & caregivers, can use it to learn Words to Live By, too. Give copies to anyone who will be working with kids to help them memorize the Words and start infusing them into everyday conversations with each other and students.

Introduce Students to Words to Live By

Want an easy way to introduce students to Words to Live By? Here’s how it works.

Read I Soar With Wings on your own, then introduce the book to students. Advise students that this is a special book that we’ll be reading frequently together to help them remember the words inside. The words inside will teach them new skills that will be important to help them become better friends and classmates. To explain, you might say something like:

“At ______ (school/program name) we all want to be the best version of ourselves! That means being a good friend to others, knowing more about ourselves, listening to each other, controlling ourselves, making good choices, being responsible for our actions and working together! The way to remind ourselves to be all of these things is called Words to Live By! Inside this book are Words to Live By. We are all going to learn the Words together! It’s a fun way to remind us how we want to be.” 

Read it as a group once a day, once a week, or as often as you can. In the beginning, point out some keywords or phrases that you think will resonate with students and talk about what those words mean to them.


Tips For Getting Started


  • Give kids their own copy of Words to Live By to read along with you as you read from the book
  • Identify a central location in your classroom to hang a copy of Words to Live By so kids can see the Words and become more familiar with them
  • Use the conversation starters in the book (see below) to encourage students to dig deeper into the skills within each competency
  • Explain what the Words to Live By means to your organization or school
  • Play the video of other students reciting it and have the staff say it along with them
Share Your Emotions Activity Bundle

Use Our Activity and Coloring Pages

Check out our activity and coloring pages to help empower kids to Share Their Emotions—the first of the ten lessons within Words to Live By. Designed for grade levels K-5 and free to download!

Use It To Start A Discussion

Once you’ve read the book by yourself and with students, try starting a conversation with students about the words they’ve just read. See if they can begin to put the pieces together and identify the skills using some of the prompts provided.



  • What’s the best thing about __________ (how you look? how you are as a friend? how you treat others? how you solve a problem? how you are in school?)
  • How do you feel when _______ (you get left out of the group? you get a good grade? people tease you? when you get a compliment or praise? someone asks you for help? when you help someone?)



  • What makes you feel ____________ (excited? nervous? scared? frustrated? proud?)
  • How can you control yourself at ________ (home? on the school bus? during class?)


Responsible Decision-Making

  • What was the best choice you made __________ (today? at school? at home? on the playground? in a disagreement with someone?)
  • What might happen if _________ (you help someone? you don’t tell the truth? listen to your teacher?)


Social Awareness

  • What is something unique about _______ (your family? being you? your hobbies? the food you like?)
  • How would you feel if _________ (you were the new kid at school? you had to move to new city? you won an award?)


Relationship Skills

  • What is a compliment you could give _________ (your mom? your teacher? a friend? a classmate?)
  • How could you show kindness ______________ (to your teacher? on the weekends? out to dinner? on the sports field? to a new person you meet?)

Introduce Parents & Caregivers to Words to Live By

Looking for a simple way to get parents & caregivers on board as you begin to implement SEL skills into your day? Just like it works for kids, I Soar with Wings is the perfect tool to help parents & caregivers learn and understand Words to Live By, too!

Give students a copy of the book (or let them borrow one) to take home for them to read together with their family. Send a printed copy of Words to Live By home, along with a letter to parents & caregivers explaining what the Words to Live By are and how it will teach kids essential life lessons to help them succeed in and out of school. Make it a fun challenge by creating a reading log to record their reading sessions throughout the week or month, or create an incentive for kids to read it with their families.

Bringing The Words To Life

There are many other ways to use I Soar with Wings to help students learn and practice social emotional skills. Make reading the book part of your classroom rituals and routines, or have kids partner up and practice their reading skills together. The key is consistency! Read the book once, then read it again and again. The language and skills embedded in the words will become second nature to students, and you’ll be surprised how quickly they will put their newfound skills into practice with a little guidance from you.

Help students learn the words as you model the skills and begin to incorporate the language into your everyday routine. Show your enthusiasm for the Words! Your energy is contagious, and kids will mirror the effort you put in to bring Words to Live By to life!

Need more copies of I Soar with Wings? Purchase them through our online store.

You May Also Like…