Stress in schools is a growing problem in today’s society. It can have a significant impact on students’ physical and mental health, as well as their ability to focus on their school work. Teaching effective calming strategies in the classroom may be easier than you thought. Using these strategies daily can enhance the learning process without disrupting student work.
Calming Strategies In The Classroom That You Can Start Using Today
- Deep breathing: Encourage students to take slow, deep breaths when they are feeling overwhelmed or anxious. They can learn to do these at their desks without anyone else knowing.
- Progressive muscle relaxation: Have students tense and relax their body’s major muscle groups one at a time to help reduce tension. I have some scripts you can use to use with the whole class or smaller groups.
- Visualization: Have them close their eyes and imagine a calm place that they enjoy, such as a beach or a meadow. Transitions are a great time to encourage the use of this calming strategy.
- Yoga: Introduce some basic yoga poses such as child’s pose, mountain pose, and tree pose.
- Art: Encourage students to express their feelings through art.
- Music: Have them listen to calming music, or play some music and have them dance or move to it.
- Exercise: Exercise releases endorphins, which can help to reduce stress and tension.
- Grounding: Have students focus on one thing they can see, smell, taste, feel and hear in the present moment. (see the Lily Pad Grounding Activity below)
Hopefully these strategies can help students manage their emotions and feel calmer. But, what about the adults? Read more here for helping teachers and yourself with easy daily self-care routines.