Here’s an “Emergency Kit” for this week (or any day when things get crazy)!
Calm Down Lotion - You know that drawer full of body lotion you've received as gifts. Take the label off one and print a new one that says "Calm Down Lotion." Give each child a little squirt to rub on their hands and arms to help them relax.
Tony Chestnut – Have children sing "Tony Chestnut" (one of my free youTube videos). As you sing each verse lower your voice until you are whispering.
*Sing other songs using a whisper voice. You'll be amazed at how it calms down the class.
Turn off the Lights – Something as simple as turning off the lights can reduce stress and energy. You could also play some quiet music as children enter the classroom.
Take a Deep Breath - Have children pretend to breath in hot chocolate as you slowly count to 8. Blow out the birthday candles as you slowly count to 8. Continue counting slowly as children breath in and out.
The Quiet Game – One child is selected to be “it.” “It” stands in front of the room and says, “Mousie, mousie, how quiet can you be? When I clap my hands 1, 2, 3 (slowly clap 3 times), we shall see!” “It” chooses the classmate who is being the quietest and then that child comes to the front of the room and is the new “it.” (My class LOVED this game. It was a great way to develop self-regulation and calm them down.)
Give Your Mouth a Vacation – Challenge children to “give their mouths a vacation” and practice breathing through their noses.
Use Your Imagination – Ask the children to close their eyes as you read a story. Challenge them to make “pictures in their brains.” Give them a sheet of paper to illustrate the story.
Enjoy the day with them! They have one chance in a lifetime to be a child and many, many years to be a grown-up!