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Friday, September 20, 2019


Oh, my! You know we've always had behavior problems in our classrooms, but they seem to be escalating. Many teachers are struggling with one or two children with "issues" that they don't have the energy to just "teach" and enjoy the other children. Sound familiar?

Is there something going on at home or maybe there might be too much screen time??? Whatever the problem is, you face it every day. I certainly am no expert and I don't have any magic potion, but over the next few days I'll share a few tips that might help from FIDGET FIXERS that Carolyn Kisloski and I wrote.

Fidget Toys
A fidget toy can be a quiet outlet and satisfy children’s “need to move.” Some children just need something to “fiddle with” so that they can focus on the learning task. Keep fidget toys simple so they meet the need as an outlet, but don’t distract the child completely.

Brain Toys
Materials: shoebox, old socks

Directions: Get a shoebox and write “brain toys” on it. Take old socks, tie them in knots, and place them in the box. As needed, invite children to get a brain toy. They can hold it, unknot it, knot it, squeeze it, and so forth.

Hint!  I think referring to these socks as a “brain toy” takes away from the negative implication.

Stress Button
Materials: poker chip, Velcro (hook side), strong glue (E6000 is my favorite)

Directions: Glue a 1” piece of Velcro to the poker chip. Children can keep it in their pocket and rub it when they feel stressed or their hands are wiggly.

Twisty and Bendy
Materials: pipe cleaners or bendy straws


Directions: Give children a pipe cleaner to twist and manipulate.

Mindful Morning
See what happens when you start your day by having children breath, relax, and move.