Feelings and emotions

Feelings and emotions

Self-Regulation for Educators, Co-Regulation for Students

The negative impact that COVID-19 had on our nervous systems, both as educators and students, is palpable. National data such as this report from the National Center for Education Statistics and lived experiences of educators show the pandemic has negatively impacted student behavior and social-emotional development, and teacher burnout and turnover is at an all-time high. Now more than ever, we must prioritize self-regulation as educators – not only as a modeling tool for students, but also for our own wellbeing. Educators are often selfless individuals who put others’ needs before their own. However, when it comes to staying emotionally [...]

2023-05-17T18:26:51+00:00December 7, 2022|

Gathering Student Input and Learning About Feelings

Redwood Elementary in Grants Pass, Oregon is one of the schools in our District Partnerships program. Last school year, the school’s data team collected data about student behaviors that were most challenging to the staff. One of the challenging behaviors was defiance. Initially, the data team started thinking about it from the teachers’ perspective, wondering what other tools could be used to deal with defiant student behavior. Before the educators implemented any tools, they decided to gather information from students. Teachers talked to students individually and had class discussions. What they learned surprised them!  As students shared, a pattern emerged: [...]

2021-09-16T10:16:42+00:00September 16, 2021|

In the Classroom, Kindness = Connection + Caring

  Many of us entered teaching believing in our abilities to be consistently kind. In reality, vacillating between kindness and being authoritarian is a common cycle, especially when class sizes and challenging students make the job feel overwhelming.  Kindness and compassion from a teacher are a powerful model for our students. Kindness does not have to mean being wishy-washy and letting the classroom descend into chaos or being overly sweet and positive. It means respecting the student AND the routines, expectations, and agreements of the classroom...as well as ourselves.  How can we as teachers do this...maintaining a firmness that allows [...]

2020-02-07T07:03:57+00:00February 7, 2020|

For Parents, a New Look at Kindness

Is it possible to be a kind parent while also holding fast to family agreements, values and expectations?  It is. Sometimes we go back and forth between being kind OR firm with our kids. Actually, being kind is being connected to your children, while holding them accountable to the expectations of the family. In this month celebrating love, we invite you to look at ways to practice  kindness and connection. Here are some ideas to get you started: Being present is an act of kindness: 15 minutes of scheduled one-on-one time every day. Children need to feel a sense of [...]

2020-02-07T06:55:48+00:00February 7, 2020|

Instilling joy and contentment

When we ask educators what they hope for in their students when they enter adulthood, they usually respond with a long list of life skills which include a sense of connection, peace, and contentment. Even though you have huge responsibility for teaching academic subjects, as educators you also value the human being doing the learning. There are many things you do in the classroom that invite both a joy in learning and a sense of joy and contentment in life. Share your joy in teaching. Not every moment is joyful, but you didn’t take on this job for the money. [...]

2019-07-18T14:26:03+00:00July 18, 2019|

Planting Seeds of Contentment

What helps a child grow into a happy, content adult? Happiness is the result of strong social emotional health that is built up over time. It starts with meeting your child’s need to be soothed as an infant, helping them manage “big” feelings and by modeling and supporting a sense of hope and optimism as they deal with the challenges and joys of childhood. . How we look at the world and our place in it, influences our degree of contentment. We can encourage our children to be happy. Model practices which create happiness: positive self-talk, celebrating gratitude, appreciating connections [...]

2019-07-18T14:15:24+00:00July 18, 2019|

Teaching Tenaciousness

Every teacher has some students who seem eager to lean into challenges or take on new things – and other students who do the opposite. They seem pull away from taking risks and struggle to manage the frustrating feelings that naturally arise when learning new ideas or tasks. Growing the internal capacity to “lean into learning” helps students thrive in school. Here are some ideas: Teach some brain science. Explain that the process of learning is hard brain work – and some people are more sensitive to the physical sensations of that kind of work. You are actually growing new [...]

2019-06-10T13:40:23+00:00June 10, 2019|

Stubbornness is Perseverance in Disguise

Can you remember a time your child insisted on continue to build something, or play or read – when you needed to go somewhere? Perseverance can be frustrating and inconvenient! When your child is sticking to something they want to do – even though you want/need to do something else it is challenging. Yet, the ability and desire to persist in the face of adversity (your request to do something else) is an important life skill which will benefit them in the future. Some children seem to be born with this kind of focus and determination, while others need more [...]

2019-06-10T13:32:09+00:00June 10, 2019|

Raising a Compassionate Child

Compassion develops over time as children grow.  We know from research that the desire to help and comfort others comes naturally to us.  Even two-year olds will offer a blankie or pacifier to a crying playmate.  They may not understand why their friend is crying, but they want to help them feel better.  By age four, children can understand when they’ve hurt someone, and can discuss what it means to be kind. Compassion is our ability to step into the shoes of another person; to care for them without judgment. It can involve putting someone else’s needs above your own. [...]

2017-11-08T12:43:01+00:00November 8, 2017|

Encouraging Compassion in the Classroom

We can build classrooms that foster respect, compassion and deep listening, resulting in spaces where students feel safe and where healthy social skills can emerge. The word compassion comes from the words to be “with suffering.” It is our ability to step into the shoes of another person, to care for them without judgment. It can involve putting someone else’s needs above your own. Building a skill like compassion in a classroom community starts with helping students feel that they have things in common, that they are not alone.  It also comes from learning how to solve problems and being [...]

2017-11-08T12:39:32+00:00November 8, 2017|


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