For information about most mental health topics (e.g. depression, anxiety, suicide, self-harm), please visit www.eMentalhealth.ca.

Articles, Presentations and Tools

You may notice that that many of my previous handouts are no longer published — that is because I am focusing my energies on having my handouts published here on http://www.eMentalHealth.ca.

Nonetheless, if there is a particular handout that you used to like using, and you can’t find it now, let me know!

Mood Scales for Emotional Intelligence

The Ottawa Mood Scales are a series of Likert scales (with faces showing different feelings) that can be used to help children, youth and adults express how they are feeling. Includes self-regulation concepts such as under- and overstimulation. Other feelings include happiness/sadness, anger, worry, and stress.

There is a growing body of research that has started to validate these scales (Wong, 2020)…

Ottawa Mood Scales: All Ages | PDF version

Are you interested in using these scales for research or publication purposes? I'd love to hear from you.
1) Fill out the 'Request to Use Ottawa Mood Scales' (PDF version) where you will agree to use under a Creative Commons License.
2) Send the completed form to me via my Contact Form.
3) Then I will be happy to send you a link to a Google doc version so that you can modify for your own use.

Published Literature Regarding the Ottawa Mood Scales

Wong, M., Croarkin, P.E., Lee, C.K. et al. Validation of Pictorial Mood Assessment with Ottawa Mood Scales and the Positive and Negative Affect Scale for Young Adults. Community Ment Health J (2020).

Studies that have used these scales

Walden A: Reducing agitation in long-term care: A virtual reality intervention for dementia. Thesis.

Green P: A behavioural approach to helping an older adult with a learning disability and mild cognitive impairment overcome depression. British Journal of Learning Disabilities, 2017.

Kumar A et al.: Perioperative Anxiety and Stress in Children Undergoing Congenital Cardiac Surgery and Their Parents: Effect of Brief Intervention—A Randomized Control Trial, J. Cardiothoracic and Vascular Anesthesia, 2019 May, 33(5): 1244-1250.


Anxiety Presentation for Families (NEW!) updates include information about attachment-based strategies, and emphasizes positive mental health strategies such as nature

Attachment and Resiliency

For general public

Attach to me if you can: Why it’s so hard to parent today’s children and youth (2-hr workshop), presented to Open Doors, Lanark Community Programs and Lanark Mental Health for Mental Health Week, May 2014.

Connected Yet Alone: How Technology Disrupts Attachments and What We Can Do About It, presented by Dr. Gandy / Cheng, at the Child/Youth Conference at the Royal Ottawa, May 2016.

For health professionals

Connected but alone: How technology disrupts our attachments to one another and what we can do about it. Presented at the Child and Adolescent Academy of Psychiatry (CACAP) Annual Meeting, 2015.

How social media gets in the way of our deep attachments, presented at Family Physician Refresher Course, Ottawa, Apr 28, 2016.

Technology Overuse, a 15-min. TEDS Style Talk, presented in Ottawa, Apr 2017.

Technology Overuse: Helping Patients and Families to Reconnect and Unplug, presented at CHEO Mental Health Rounds on Apr 20, 2017.

For early childhood educators and Early Years professionals

When you’re done texting, can someone just sit and play with me? How modern society (and technology) disrupts relationships between children and adults, presented to Best Start Renfrew Network, May 2014.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

ADHD: Guide for Parents

ADHD: Medication Guide for Family Physicians (Note: this does not have some of the newer medications, but nonetheless, the dosage information is correct for all the older medications)

Developmental Coordination Disorder

Developmental Coordination Disorder

Handwriting Problems (aka Dysgraphia, Writing Disorder)

Handwriting Problems: Guide for Families

Irlen Syndrome

Looking for my old Irlen Syndrome handout? It has been replaced with the newer "Visual Stress" Handout on eMentalHealth.ca.

Nature and Mental Health

Nature and Mental Health, presentation to the Healthy Kids Community Challenge in Pembroke, ON, in Feb 2016.

Non-Verbal Learning Disorder

Non-verbal LD: Guide for Parents
Non-verbal LD: Guide for School

School Refusal (aka School Avoidance)

School Refusal: Guide for Families

Selective Mutism

Selective Mutism: Information for Parents
Selective Mutism: Information for the School (i.e. Educators)

Sensory Processing and Self-Regulation

How is Your Bucket? (a free, self-regulation program for neurotypical children/youth)

How is your Bucket? (a free, self-regulation program for children/youth with autism spectrum disorder (ASD))

Self-Regulation (an overview on self-regulation strategies for everyone, even for those without sensory processing problems)

Sensory Processing and Self-Regulation: Guide for Families (an overview on sensory processing problems and self-regulation for parents)

Sensory Processing and Self-Regulation: Review Article (published May 2005 in the Canadian Child Psychiatry Review, primarily written for professionals)

Sensory Processing and Self-Regulation: Guide for Teachers (a short summary of key strategies for busy educators)

Self-Regulation Roadmap

CHEO's Roadmap to Self-Regulation for children/youth aged 6-18
Based on Deb Dana and Stephen Porges work on self-regulation, these are worksheets to help develop a self-regulation plan.


Beyond CBT and SSRIs: Self-Compassion, presented at the Academy of Medicine Ottawa in Feb 2017.

Technology Overuse / Misuse

Please see any of the earlier presentations on attachment