Tips and Tools

Tips and Tools

Tips and Tools2023-05-17T20:40:13+00:00

Celebrating and Reflecting on the End of the School Year

You made it! Closing the school year out with some rituals and appreciations helps us reflect on all the growth and memories you and your students have made this year. There is so much anticipatory energy present at the end of the school year, and it’s important to look back at your classroom and school community so you can be fully present for the transition to summer break. Here are a few ideas to celebrate the end of the year!   Celebrate and Acknowledge Each Student Create a word cloud for every student by asking each of their peers to submit one word they would use to describe the student. This could also be done verbally during a class meeting, or with old-fashioned pen and[...]

June 8, 2023|

Easy Ways to Appreciate & Celebrate Yourself and Your Coworkers

In our opinion, educators have one of the hardest jobs in the country. For educators who have been navigating challenging behaviors all year and still showing up day after day, we see you. For educators that are tired and frustrated, we appreciate you. For the educators that find hope in the small wins with students, we celebrate you. We’d like to offer some easy ways to celebrate yourself and your fellow educators for Teacher Appreciation Week and all year long! Reflect On All You’ve Been Through With all the changes in the experience of being an educator over the last three years, we invite you to take this time to reflect on what has helped you stay grounded in this hectic, challenging work. As educators,[...]

May 11, 2023|

Parents & Families Can Show Appreciation for Educators All Year Long

We appreciate educators year-round for all their hard work, and in May, Teacher Appreciation Week gives us a chance to celebrate them and show educators how much we value them! Through COVID-19 scares, virtual teaching, and returning to in-person school, educators have remained nimble and dedicated in serving our students and families. Here are a few ways to celebrate educators: Write A Card (and Have Your Child Write One, Too!) A heartfelt card can go a long way toward making educators feel cared for and appreciative. Start your kids off with some sentence stems if they are having a difficult time getting started. Here are a few examples: “Teacher, I love it when you..., You make learning about _____ really fun!, It is really funny[...]

May 11, 2023|

Teaching boundary setting and repair conversations

As educators, we teach so much more than algebra and spelling to our students. Crucial life skills, such as self-regulation, repairing harm, and setting healthy boundaries to prevent harm, are just a few of the life lessons we can provide for our students. Teaching the importance of boundaries, how to communicate your needs, and how to receive boundary setting are all foundational building blocks for healthy interpersonal relationships. Unfortunately, many of us did not have a blueprint in our childhood about boundary setting and repair conversations. Here are some tips for integrating preventative interpersonal relationship skills into your classroom culture.    Model Boundary Setting  Children learn from what we do, not from what we say. Modeling setting healthy boundaries in the classroom can be an[...]

April 11, 2023|

Relationship Tools You Can Use to Repair Mistakes and Maintain Connection with Your Child

Conflict is an inevitable part of life, and we often are not taught how to repair harm once it occurs, especially not with our children. It is vital for parents and caregivers to remain in healthy connection with their child after conflict occurs, and to model what an effective repair conversation looks like. This not only strengthens the bond with your child, but it also teaches children the importance of apologizing and repairing harm when conflict occurs. This article from The Peaceful Parent Institute details the ways the parent-child relationship heavily influences how your child engages in future relationships. Navigating conflict is a crucial aspect of healthy relationships. Here are a few relationship tools to explore and practice:   Regulate, regulate, regulate Before attempting to[...]

April 7, 2023|

Create an Inclusive Classroom Community by Learning Neurodiversity and Brain Science

March includes both Neurodiversity Celebration Week and Brain Science Awareness Week. Helping students learn about neurodiversity and brain science helps to create an inclusive classroom community while building empathy and self-awareness. Here are a few ways you and your students can explore brain science and neurodiversity.   Learn About Neurodiversity According to this Harvard Medical School article, neurodiversity “describes the idea that people experience and interact with the world around them in many ways; there is no one "right" way of thinking, learning, and behaving, and differences are not viewed as deficits.” Approximately 15-20% of the population has a neurological difference, and oftentimes the public education system is not designed to meet the needs of neurodivergent students. Unlearning myths about neurodivergent students is helpful for all[...]

March 22, 2023|

How Learning Brain Science is Helpful for Parents, Caregivers, and Kids

Brain science is not just for neuroscientists! How can it help parents and caregivers? Educating yourself and your kids about brain science helps deepen your understanding of behavior and emotions. Everything—from the way humans learn, to the way we engage with each other, to our capacity for thinking, feeling, learning, and problem-solving — all functions through billions of neurons and connections in our brains. Understanding the basics of how the brain works helps demystify human emotions and behavior and gives us some agency in self-regulation and problem-solving. Kids love learning about their brains! They can become scientists of their own mind, expanding their understanding of their own behaviors and emotions. Here are a few resources to get started.   Help Your Kids Learn Brain Basics[...]

March 21, 2023|

Ideas for Teaching Self-Advocacy and Contribution in the Classroom

We believe fighting anti-blackness and speaking out against oppression of all forms deeply matters to the health of our communities and classrooms. As educators, we can create opportunities for young people to reflect on injustices, advocate for themselves, and contribute to their community for a more just world. Meaningful contributions not only help our community, but they also cultivate a sense of belonging and significance for young people. Get started or add to your current practices with a few of these suggestions:   Incorporate Community Care & Advocacy into Your Classroom Build your students advocacy skills and encourage community by practicing community care and providing advocacy opportunities in your classroom. This resource from The Practice Space is full of ideas for incorporating advocacy skills into[...]

February 3, 2023|

Honor Legacies by Teaching Children to Take Action & Make Contributions

Honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy is deeper than his famous quotes and speeches. This year, we are honoring his legacy through action. King believed that all people should be able to belong and contribute meaningfully within their communities, and that anti-blackness and oppression prohibit community care. In our individualistic world, it’s vital to cultivate opportunities for young people to meaningfully contribute to the world around them. As children build and practice self-advocacy skills, they also can tune into what their community needs and how they can support one another. Step back and allow your child to identify causes they care about and to take action to meaningfully contribute to a more just world. Here are a few ideas to get started or add[...]

February 3, 2023|

Self-regulation and Co-regulation are the Keys to More Peace and Fewer Power Struggles

Imagine you are on your way out the door and your 5-year-old is crying on the floor, your 8-year-old is yelling at them to stop crying, and you’re trying to talk over both of them to get them into the car. If this sounds familiar, keep reading! Almost every parent has experienced some rendition of this scene, power struggles and heightened stress levels included. Brain science like that explained in this paper from the Duke University Center for Child and Family Policy tells us that co-regulation between adults and children is an extremely supportive practice, and it can help reduce power struggles and tantrums. Here are a few ways to get started.   First Things First – Breathe! It’s really difficult to attend to an[...]

December 7, 2022|


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