Essential Items for a Counselor's Office

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Looking to have a complete office, ready to help kids learn social skills? Take a look here!


Q’s Race to the Top

This game is one of my new favorite social skills games! Why? Because not only do I enjoy playing, children really enjoy playing. The main character in the game is Q, a super smart monkey but doesn’t always have the greatest social awareness and doesn’t always think about others. Q’s Race to the Top is super simple to learn. The game has three types of cards: Blue YOU Cards, Green Q Cards, Orange DO Cards. The counselor in me loves the Blue and Green cards, and the mom in me loves the Orange cards. they get kids moving and doing physical things that are fun and a little challenging. It’s perfect for a child who may have a hard time sitting still for a whole game. And the beauty is it makes children stay invested and involved with the game. Having the physical component is the perfect way to balance out the talking parts of the game.

Connect 4

A simple and quick game to play during lunch group or when working one on one with a child.

Rush Hour

This game can be a great distraction for kids when they come into an office. They need to concentrate, and it can take the focus off a conflict. It can also be a great game for kids to try to figure out together.


You might not know this, but Uno can be hardcore. I really loved playing Uno, because there are so many ways to play. I always liked to make sure that everyone was on the same page about the rules. Great practice for real life!


Great questions that can be used during lunch groups to start conversations.


I always kept this game around because some kids found it quite soothing to play. There is something about the smoothness of the marbles and the sound that they make when you drop them into the different spots on the mancala board.

Listmania: An A to Z Quick List Card Game

One of my new favorite games, this is a quick and easy game that would work well for small groups or lunch groups. One card that made my own kids laugh out loud: List things that would make terrible pizza toppings. 

A Penny for Your Thoughts

Designed by therapists, this game is meant to help spark conversations and connections between kids and adults. There are 4 different decks of cards - person, place, emotion and skill. It's a good way to start tough conversations about big feelings, tough experiences or challenging situations. 


PeaceMakers is a deck of cards that is meant to help kids practice mindfulness and connect with others. These are great cards to use in a lunch group to spark conversations to help kids get a better understanding of their emotions and how they can handle themselves in a safe and healthy way.


Sometimes when kids are talking, they just need something to hold onto. If they have excess energy, sometimes they can use a fidget as a way to help release some of that. I kept several different kinds in a fidget basket in my office. There are fidgets you can make yourself and fidgets you can purchase.


Take a pool noodle and cut up into small rings. Instant fidgets for a bunch of kids!

Velcro - attach one side of velcro under a child’s desk. It’s quick, easy and hidden.

Desk Fidget Tool from Sugar Aunts

Use different textures/fabrics for focus - Attach several different types of fabric/textures (satin, soft & hard side of velcro, corduroy, minky fabric, etc) on a small ruler or cardboard, then stick the whole thing to the underside of a desk

DIY Fidget Bracelet from de Jong dream house

Make a homemade stress balls using balloons.

Wrap pipe cleaners around popsicle sticks

Make your own playdough - This is a simple, long lasting recipe from Emma Owl

Fidgets to Buy



Do you have ideas for other essential office items?


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