Heathdale flower 18th August 2022

Working Together to Understand Emotions

Building on the topic of motivation, explore how students are learning to self-regulate their emotions at school and how you can partner with us at home.

Heathdale flower

You may recall that in that last newsletter I talked about motivation in children. Motivation can be difficult if students are finding it hard to regulate their emotions. With this in mind, I thought it timely to tell you of language and activities we are using with children to help them gain skills in the area of self-regulation. God has given us many emotions and sometimes our self-control can get a little out of control!

The Zones of Regulation was developed by Leah Kuypers. The activities and language help students recognise when they are in different zones and how to change or stay in the zone they are in. They give students an increased vocabulary of emotional terms, skills in reading others' emotions, insight into events that trigger behaviours and ways to calm and alert the mind.

If we as parents and teachers are all using the same language, the students can engage in a comfortable and supportive environment to practice their self-regulating skills. The red and yellow ones are not bad zones, as all zones are expected at one time or another. The zones are intended to be neutral and not communicate judgment.

For example, at home you could use the language of "You look like you are really frustrated - are you in the yellow zone? How can I help you move back into the green zone?" The child will soon tell you if you are incorrect in your zone placement!

Then you could do some breathing exercises and calming down strategies the child responds to in order to move zone.

It may be helpful to have a copy of the zones on the fridge so children can point to the zone they are in if they are unsure.

We have had some great successes with this at school in self-regulating so if you would like more information, please talk to your child's homeroom teacher.

We thank God for our emotions and pray that we use them all at the right times.