Children in Year 1 have been exploring their emotions recently and the different ways of expressing themselves. We have been learning about the Zones of Regulation – a tool which helps with emotional regulation. It is vital that we equip our young children with tools by which they are able to manage and regulate their own emotions.
The Zones of Regulation framework provides an effective way of categorising emotions into four zones: blue, red, yellow and green. Each zone covers an array of emotions, however, in Year 1, as we are still familiarising ourselves with emotions and feelings, we have been using the four zones to represent a limited number of emotions. They are:
Blue – sad or tired
Yellow – anxious or silly
Green – calm and happy
Red – angry
We may find ourselves in each of the zones at different times..and that is totally ok! Being able to take control of our emotions, manage and channel those feelings effectively is the goal. Hence, we have been thinking about a toolkit of strategies in which we can use to get ourselves into the green zone – where we are focused and calm. Some of the children have already suggested ideas for their toolkit:
MA: Take a deep breath
AR: Go to the playground
KI: Drink some water
SM: Put our heads down
RS: Watch a calming video
AM: Listen to a nasheed or surah
SK: Shake the wiggles out!
It has been great fun learning about different emotions and the ways of expressing and managing them. We really enjoyed playing ‘Guess the Emotion’. One child used their facial expressions to represent an emotion whilst the rest of the class had to guess which zone they were in by using a hula hoop with the corresponding colour.