APS Column: APS column: Zones of Regulation

Published 5:17 pm Friday, October 7, 2022

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By Jill Rollie, Joceline Ramirez Cruz, and Lori Coughlin

At Woodson Kindergarten Center we use Zones of Regulation, a social emotional learning framework, to support our students.

Zones of Regulation is a pathway to help our students identify and manage their feelings. Emotions are categorized into four different colored zones:

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Blue Zone —  Sad, bored, tired, sick

Green Zone -— Happy, focused, calm, proud

Yellow Zone — Worried, frustrated, silly, excited

Red Zone — Overjoyed/elated, panicked, angry, terrified

Our staff prompts children to identify their feelings by naming them and teaching them to recognize emotions in themselves and others.

Our staff coaches our students to use various tools, including different breathing techniques, fidgets, movement, stuffed animals, and visuals. Children, with adult guidance, get to determine which tool is most effective for them once they’ve identified which zone they are in.

In our classrooms at Woodson, teachers provide a quiet, soft space called a Safe Place where children can go when needed and have tools available to them. It is important to have this space in every classroom so children feel comfortable and can manage safely through big emotions.  We want to emphasize with our students no feeling is a “bad” feeling. At Woodson, we honor the importance of teaching these social-emotional skills, so our students can better engage in learning.

Woodson values our family partnerships and understands the importance of teachers and families working together to support our children.

One way we partner with families is by sending a Family newsletter at the beginning of each month. The purpose of the newsletter is for caregivers to be aware of the social emotional learning that we do here at Woodson and will include tips on how to practice these strategies in your home. 

It will be distributed via Portal Push, SeeSaw and on our Woodson Facebook page. Our hope is that together we can accomplish more than alone.