The Depressed and Anxious Child

The Depressed and Anxious Child

Bringing a youngster out of the shadows



James D. Sutton, EdD

P.O. Box 672

Pleasanton, TX 78064

(830) 569-3586

Note: This program takes a predominantly functional and practical (rather than clinical or theoretical) approach to improvement and healing. Models, concepts, and interventions used are clear, and can easily be shared with youngsters and their families. Strategies for helping youngsters achieve in school (the child’s work environment), either in a direct or supportive role, will also be discussed.

Participant Benefits:

–Confidence in quickly and accurately assessing depression and anxiety in children and adolescents.

–Ability to immediately implement step-by-step models and processes.

–Opportunity to watch youngsters recover.


Program Focus:

This program is designed to assist educators, administrators, counselors and allied health care professionals in working with the depressed and anxious youngster.

Needs Addressed by this Program:

Diane is polite, appreciative and friendly. She is also very depressed. Learning always came hard for her, especially reading. Diane is two grades behind in school.

Diane’s parents are divorced. After living with her mother a brief period of time, it soon became obvious that she could not live with her and her step-siblings. She moved in with her father, and things improved considerable. Shortly afterward, Diane’s father was killed in an automobile accident. The girl was devastated. She began drinking—heavily. Nothing at all seemed to matter anymore.

Diane wanted to die.

If you had Diane in your classroom, or on your counseling case load, how would you work with her?

Intended Audience of this Program:

Special education/regular education teachers, counselors, administrators, school nurses, special education assessment personnel, special education supervisors/directors, drug awareness specialists, social workers and allied health care professionals.

Program Objectives:

As a result of this workshop, its knowledge and skill-building activities, and its professionally prepared workbook, participants will be able to:

1. Distinguish “normal” from “not normal” regarding a youngster’s responses to crisis events and circumstances.

2. Review the primary symptoms and characteristics of depression and anxiety in children and adolescents.

3. Identify the two specific characteristics that signal “high risk” for youth suicide.

4. Know five destructive myths that can cause appropriate intervention to be avoided or delayed.

5. Understand specific characteristics of fear and anger with the depressed and anxious child (and how they cause the youngster to become “stuck”).

6. Implement a comprehensive approach to assessing depression and anxiety in young people.

7. Focus on a number of creative and effective ways to put an anxious youngster at ease.

8. Follow a powerful “process” model for intervention, a model that instantly helps a counselor evaluate the depth and scope of their work with the child.

9. Study four different kinds of “plans” to use as action steps for the child.

10. Learn how to use a “feelings” model to help a child understand and “connect” with the feelings they are experiencing.

11. Discover ways to help a youngster gain some immediate relief from their emotional pain.

12. Capitalize on four ways to use hundreds of support activities in creating “constructive diversions” during counseling.

13. Assist a youngster in replacing their negative and harmful beliefs.

14. Help a youngster realize that they can change in positive ways.

15. Realize seven ways to teach a depressed and anxious child skills of personal empowerment.

16. Share eleven ways to enhance the depressed and anxious child’s performance and achievement in the classroom.

Program Description:

Depression and its associated features of anger, anxiety and low self-esteem is an ever expanding central problem in the lives of children and adolescents. Unattended, depression can lead to lost hope, incompetence, difficulties in adaptation and, in some cases, lost lives.

Workshop participants will learn of the features and the many manifestations of depression in children and adolescents, and will learn simple, but powerful, methods for assessing it. They will also learn specific techniques that are central to the healing and re-empowerment of depressed and anxious youngsters.

Qualifications of the Presenter:

Texas Psychologist License # 2790

Texas Professional Counselor License # 06979

Texas Licensed Specialist in School Psychology #6154

Texas Education Agency certifications–see vita

Certified Speaking Professional

Credit Hours Granted:

This program was developed to provide 5.25 clock hours of credit (.525 CEUs).

NOTE: This program acknowledges the fact that there can be a connection between the depressed and anxious youngster and drug/alcohol abuse or dependence, as well as other compulsive disorders of the youngster and the family. For this reason, this program is an excellent one for professionals working in the field of drug and alcohol awareness.

Program Agenda:

8:00 — 8:30 Registration

8:30 — 10:00


Elements of Healthy Personality and a Critical Needs

Program Objectives

Crisis: Upheaval of Needs

Symptoms and Characteristics of Depression and Anxiety

Youth Suicide

10:00 — 10:15


10:15 — 12:00


Myths That Harm

Fear & Anger: An Attack on Needs

How Much is Too Much? (assessment)

12:00 — 1:00


1:00 — 2:00

Intervention: Insights & Application

A “Process” Model for Intervention

Teaching the Feelings Model

Relief from Pain

Constructive Diversions (support activities)

2:00 — 2:15


2:15 — 3:15

Intervention (Cont’d)

Cognitive Work

Issues of Transition and Forgiveness

Strength Through Empowerment

Helping Youngsters in the Classroom