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I'm Karen!

I am Karen Cuthrell and I am on a journey.  I started this journey when my daughter had difficulty expressing her emotions when she was six years old. The psychologists told me that I had to get her to talk about her feelings. There were no tools on the market, so I co-created the first Feeling Friends 12 characters. And they were an instant hit with children, educators, and parents. 

As I have journeyed with this project, I have seen thousands of children start their journey to emotional wellness using The Feeling Friends as their foundation.  What I have learned is that although I created The Feeling Friends for my daughter, The Feeling Friends were also for me.

I found my emotional voice and wellness in my Feeling Friends Journey.  My personal focus now is Adult Social and Emotional Learning.  The more adults I steer to emotional wellness, the more children will be affected.  Because of my experiences, I am able to authentically help children as well as adults find their emotional voices, travel down the road of emotional wellness, and feel pure JOY.  This is how I daily accomplish my life’s purpose of leaving the world emotionally better off than I found it.  And that is good.


The Feelings Company is B2B consumer product company that creates social and emotional learning(SEL) content.  We sell our educational program and professional development to school districts, Head Start, and private daycares. Our product, The Feeling Friends is an evidence-based learning program that fosters social and emotional wellness in children in the early years. We are the only African American evidence-based SEL in the country and we see SEL from a unique and culturally inclusive lens.

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The Feeling Friends Team is comprised of Karen Cuthrell -CEO and Operations Director Mandez Douthit .  Together this dynamic duo is bringing Social Emotional Learning (SEL) to school districts, head start, and day cares with fidelity near you!

We GROW Children Socially & Emotionally Stronger.



According to the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional, Learning (CASEL), social-emotional learning (SEL) “an integral part of education and human development.  SEL is “the process through which children and adults acquire and apply the knowledge, skills, and attitudes to develop healthy identities, manage emotions and achieve personal and collective goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relations,

and make responsible decisions.” 



The Feeling Friends approach to Social and Emotional Learning is an evidence-based, culturally inclusive school-wide approach designed for use in kindergarten through second grade to devote the development of three key emotion skills, identifying, expressing and managing feelings (The Feeling Friends Way), the foundation of social and emotional learning. 


The Feeling Friends Way begins with systemic professional development that involves professional development for adults who are involved in the child’s life so that feelings become the foundation of emotional literacy for everyone involved.  


The Feeling Friends Way tools (professional development, teacher's guide, books, puppets, music, and posters) were designed so that adults and students develop their

SEL skills, self-awareness, self-management, self-awareness, responsible decision-making, and relationship skills to foster emotional wellness within themselves that will translate to a healthy school climate.  


The Feelings Friends Way’s foundation is the feelings vocabulary (12 emotion words associated with a Feeling Friends Characters.)  The intensive, imaginative, and interactive language-based program approach to SEL allows adults and students to understand feelings, a complex and unspoken subject in a fun and exciting way.



The Feeling Friends Way cultivates adults’ own social and emotional competencies to build their expertise and skills to become emotionally well and lead social and emotional initiatives. 



SEL advances educational equity and excellence through authentic school-family-community partnerships. Through these partnerships we establish learning environments and experiences that feature trusting and collaborative relationships, rigorous and meaningful curriculum and instruction, and ongoing evaluation. SEL can help address various forms of inequity, and empower young people and adults to co-create thriving schools and contribute to safe, healthy, and just communities.

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