The idea of calming down ideas for kids is such an important one, especially in 2022 and beyond. Looking for some easy Calm Down Area in Classroom Ideas? Teachers will love these handy downloads and resources that you can add to your calm down area and start using it pronto!
>>> Looking for a BIG bundle of social emotional learning skills and printable tasks for kids? You and your students will love this bundle. <<<
This can be done in many ways. One way is to take a deep breath and count to 10. Another is to do some stretches or yoga poses.
And another way is to try and find something that makes you happy and focus on it for a while.
No matter how we try, we do need to find ways to help kids connect with their emotions, identify those emotions and in turn transform them into more positive ones to self regulate.
What is a Calm Down Area in Classroom?
Why do we actually need calm down areas? I never thought I would need one, until, of course, I had to be in the classroom day in and out and watching my poor students struggle with regulating their own feelings and emotions.
I love using posters in the classroom, along with SEL stories. I actually created a Calm Down SEL story just the other day:
The biggest and most important thing when teaching SEL (social emotional learning)? Show kids that having feelings and emotions is a normal part of life.
This is so important, often we make kids feel that they shouldn’t be angry, they shouldn’t be sad. This couldn’t be far from the truth.
I’ve created a FREE set of calm down posters which I think you and your students will LOVE. Head to the bottom of this post to grab these:
Related: Best Printable Feeling Words List PDF for Special Needs Kids
We, as adults have emotions like sadness, frustration, anger and more. So why do we expect our kids to suppress these feelings?
How do you teach kids feelings?
The first thing to remember is that children learn by doing. They need to practice the skills they are learning. If they are learning about feelings, then they need opportunities to feel those emotions.
You can show them pictures of people feeling different emotions and talk about what the people in the photos might be feeling. You can also encourage them to act out different emotions and tell how they feel when they do so.
How does a positive environment meet emotional needs?
A positive environment is one that is supportive and encouraging. It’s one where children are encouraged to explore, take risks, and make mistakes.
Children that grow up in a positive environment are more likely to be successful in school, have better relationships with friends and family, and feel good about themselves.
A positive environment can help kids develop and grow in a healthy way.
The most important thing in raising children is to create a safe and nurturing environment for them. This will provide them with the opportunity to explore and learn about their world, while feeling comfortable and secure in their surroundings.
Some more links and examples of emotional skills:
- 10 Best Kindness Bulletin Boards to Promote Social Skills
- Teaching Social Emotional Skills to Preschool: 10 Super Easy Books on Kindness
- How Social and Emotional Learning Interventions Can Save a Child’s Emotional Wellbeing
- Teaching Social Skills Fantastic Hands-on Ideas and Free Printables!
Acting out emotions will definitely be so much fun! Kids love to learn all about different emotions, and when we normalise accepting these feelings as normal.
There are many ways to teach kids about feelings. One way is to use SEL books that introduce different feelings in a fun and interactive way. Another way is to have conversations with them about their feelings.
Books are a great resource for introducing different emotions to children. They can be used as a starting point for conversations about how the character might be feeling and why they might be feeling that way or what they might do next.
Here are 10 Calm Down Area in Classroom Ideas
Teach emotional regulation with this super fun thermometer. This Emotions Thermometer Check In Binder and Poster options and more, includes printable emotions posters, check in binder pages and more.
Check out this fun area set up by Faith Fit in PreK. She includes some fun plush toys, which I have linked below.
Use this super fun FREE calming strategies PDF poster in your little corner. This poster is FREE, grab it from the post below.
Here’s another calm down area example area with posters that you can add to your classroom or are at home. You could also add plush animals and fidget toys like you would to any area, to help kids cool down. I’ll be adding links to these below.
Another way you could use the calm down area in your room, is to include social stories or a set of cards that kids can look at as a guide once they go to this corner. Regulating emotions is a tough thing to do if you’re a child is having a hard time choosing a regulating activity, have them use the cards for reference!
Sensory Calming Toys for Kids
Looking for some sensory toys to add to your calm down area? My students absolutely LOVE these. I will be listing the ones I seem to think kids love the most. The best thing about these sensory toys is that special needs and mainstream kids will benefit from them immensely.
A value pack of sensory toy supplies like squishy balls, tubes, squeeze pets and more. Grab this discounted bundle right here on Amazon.
If you’re looking to incorporate tubes into your area, add this bundle of tubes to your corner along with fun sensory toys.
My Absolute GAME CHANGER sensory toys to add to a calm down area and without question, the most useful and appealing sensory toy is the pop it toy. My absolute favourites are these multi shapes food pop its, and the alphabet and number ones for literacy and math activities.
Have you used sensory bottles for your calm down areas? Kids love these bottles! You can add anything inside these to practice multiple skills. If you don’t want to make them, you could buy a set from Amazon. I love this shaped set of sensory bottles.
Another superb calm down area which would suit older students too, have them identify how they are feeling, then choosing an activity to suit:
More Calm Down Area in Classroom ideas from other bloggers
When it comes to calm down areas, there are simply MANY ideas we can incorporate into our classroom and even our homes. The most important thing to note is the fact that you are already here looking for ideas to support your students. This by itself makes you an awesome teacher and parents!
Check out what Nikki outlined in her super helpful post on the benefits of having a calm down corner. Check out her article at this link here or click on the image below to see it!
Looking for specific ideas on how to create a calming corner? Jennifer from Endeavours in Education did it so well! She outlines when to create one, how to use one and why it is so important, especially now during the pandemic.
Click on the blog button below to head to the next blog to check out some more awesome calm down ideas for the classroom!
Ready to grab your FREE set of feelings posters for your students? The best way I like to use these is hanging them onto a wall and having the kids read the prompts, identify what they are feeling, then choosing an activity to help them calm down.
Words for my feelings poster
Why is it important for kids to identify their feelings? They cannot understand why they are feeling this way. This poster helps put words to their feelings. Download this poster along with the dealing with feelings poster below.
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Please note that this poster set was created in Canva, right click the image –> save as and image on your desktop and then print from your desktop.
Graphics Purchased and used with permission
I offer free printables to give to my readers AND to provide for my family. Your frequent visits to my blog & support purchasing through affiliates links and ads keep the lights on so to speak. Thanks to you!
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