Self Calming Cards (referenced on pg 43)
What can students do when they’re angry, anxious, or frustrated? Self-Calming Cards, created by Elizabeth Crary, will help them add new strategies to their personal toolbox. Each of the 24 illustrated cards describes how students can soothe themselves with a different method—physical, auditory/verbal, visual, creative, self-nurture, and humor. These cards explain how parents and teachers can teach students the concept of self-calming. The cards introduce multiple methods activities for ages ranging from toddler to adult.
Test Your Self-Regulation Disposition (Referenced on pg 38 of Teaching Kids to Thrive)
Take the Self-Regulation Questionnaire (SRQ) to determine your self-regulation disposition. This is a great resource to share with parents and educators.
Brain Breaks (Referenced on pg 57 of Teaching Kids to Thrive)
Two of the best resources for brain breaks in the classroom are YouTube and Go Noodle. Teachers can find great resources on both. If you are looking for upper level brain breaks check out YouTube, there are plenty videos that demonstrate upper level brain breaks. Here is a great playlist to get you started.
Minion Memory Mission
We love Jill Kuzma’s Minion Memory Mission for practicing working memory for elementary students. The goal is for students to improve working memory by retaining, sequencing, and recalling three to six pieces of information.
This website encourages the development of attention and self-control in adults by tracking how much time users spend on self-identified “productive” and “distracting” websites and apps. The tool runs in the background of users’ computers, tracks activity, and creates a detailed report. This site has a lite free version and a paid version.
Cornell notes are helpful for students when they are building recall and working memory skills. This video is an overview of the Cornell note taking process by Jennifer DesRochers.
Sketch Note Tutorial
Notetaking with visuals and words is a great way to support learning. If you have been curious about the sketch notetaking craze, here are a few resources to help you get started. We love this video by Sketcho Frenzy (Claudine Delfin) as well as her website and blog. These resources answer common questions and help to get students started creating sketch notes.
GrowingSound CDs are for teachers, parents, and early education students. The CDs are based around social and emotional development (SEL). GrowingSound music guides children through the development of self-control, relationships, self-confidence, gratefulness, and other SEL skills. For an example of one of their songs, check out “I Get Angry”.
“Executive Functions in the Classroom”
Chris Dendy offers a unique look at classroom issues caused by command and control function issues in this video. He offers possible solutions or external cues that can be used to support students. This quick video is a great prompt for a PLC or faculty meeting discussion.
StoryBots Brain Song
The “Brain, Brain, Brain” song by StoryBots is a great resource for teaching how the brain functions and thinks in the elementary classroom.
Daniel Siegel’s TEDx Talk, “Mindfulness and Neural Integration”
In this 18 minute video Dr. Daniel Siegel talks about the brain, the mind, and the cultivation of relationships. He uses Mr. Rogers as a model for teaching students about his 3 R’s: reflection, relationships, and resilience. This video covers emotional and social intelligence in an easy to understand format.
Apps to Help With Executive Function
Dedra and Debbie love using technology. The app store is ever changing, and new apps are released every week. We have highlighted a few of the top rated apps that we found useful to support executive function. If you have a great app you would like to share email us or Tweet us @tchkidstothrive
Age: Middle school, high school, and college-age students
This scheduling app lets users add class times, homework due dates, notes, recorded information, and files to their calendar. It is an excellent tool that aids students as they develop organizational and prioritizing skills.
Age: Middle school, high school, and college-age students
This app is for students who need help organizing and keeping up with multiple classes, assignments, and deadlines. The calendar and notification systems sync across multiple devices. Students in a 1:1 or BYOD (bring your own device) environment should be encouraged to use this or other planning apps to create time management habits that they can draw on throughout their lives.
The Pomodoro time management method suggests that if you work for 25 minutes on one task and then 25 minutes on a different task you will work more efficiently. The 30/30 app aides the development of self-control and focus by allowing users to customize task times. You can learn more about the Pomodoro Techique by checking out its Wikipedia page.
This tool is popular with students and teachers who struggle with distractions. This free Mac app allows users to block themselves from distracting websites for a set period of time.
Google Keep is an organizational app that allows the user to take notes, edit, share, and collaborate while auto-syncing across multiple devices. Enhance your notes by adding photos, audio files, and voice memos. You can also color code and create reminders.
Notes: Supernote Recorder
This app is quick and simple to use in the busy shuffle of a student’s typical day. Create photos, notes, voice recordings, and set reminders. To share, export notes to Dropbox or email them.
Assign a timeframe and prioritization for tasks and the app will send alerts based on the information given at set up. The app overcomes the obstacles of procrastination by getting your attention when necessary and otherwise staying out of your way. Its function is to help you effortlessly complete important tasks.
The Zones of Regulation
Age: Elementary students to adults
Zones of Regulation is a curriculum and app to help students gain skills in regulating their behaviors, including the management of their emotions and strengthening increased self-control and problem-solving skills. Based on of Leah Kuypers book The Zones of Regulation the app uses a cognitive approach offering activities to build self-regulation.
Minecraft in the Classroom
This app is free for educators to try and $1-$5 per year per student. Minecraft uses technology and creativity in a maker environment that promotes the use of command and control function skills in a variety of ways and can easily be integrated with any subject taught in the classroom. On the education Minecraft site, there are multiple lessons for ages 5 to 14 and up that are content based. If Minecraft sounds a bit too techy to you, just consider this: What other tool will set up a content-based scenario where students practice organization, planning, prioritizing, working memory, impulse control and more? In Minecraft, students must create everything in their world. It takes work, dedication, and self-regulation to achieve the goals and follow the rules. This popular craze is just what students need to build command and control functioning while igniting a passion for learning.
Bad Piggies is an online puzzle game, from the makers of Angry Birds, that challenges players to build contraptions that carry pigs to their destination and accomplish their goals. Each stage is a new challenge which requires planning and critical thinking. Players invent a solution to each puzzle.
This classic game is a wonderful exercise in organization, planning, and flexibility. Users create a bustling city where citizens thrive. The larger and more intricate the city gets, the more needs the citizens will have. It is up to the user to keep the people in the city happy or they will abandon the city. While playing, users will encounter a variety of unexpected challenges.
Where’s My Water
This Disney app is available on Google and iTunes. Users help Swampy the alligator by moving water through pipes and passageways to his broken shower. Users develop planning and flexible thinking skills as they progress through each level.
This free website and app supports positive behavior reinforcement. Teachers select the skills they would like to encourage in students. Students receive daily points for exhibiting desired behaviors, for example: working hard, exercising self-control, or staying organized. Students can record videos and take pictures of artifacts for their personal e-portfolios. Parents have access to the portfolios, their child’s daily points, and direct communication with teachers.