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Classroom Practices

Calming Spaces: A Safe Place for Self-Regulation (1 hour)

Going through a school day can be stressful for many students. This presentation will show how having a calming space in the classroom can be a pivotal tool and routine for helping all students learn to manage their stress and regulate their emotions and behavior. Whatever age group you work with, you will leave equipped with ideas and strategies for setting up and incorporating a calming area into your classroom.

A Deep Dive into Brain Breaks (1 hour)

Do you ever have times when your students are having a hard time listening or paying attention? This presentation will take a deep dive exploring the uses and purposes of a brain break. We will examine how to best assess, in the moment, what kind of brain break your students need. We will also look at how building brain breaks into your classroom lessons and routines can increase student engagement and academic retention. Lastly, we will explore how brain breaks can be used to enhance social skills, reinforce academic concepts, and spark creativity.

Preventative Regulation Breaks for Individual Students (1 hour)

Often breaks for an individual student with challenging behaviors can truly help or can make things worse. This presentation will discuss the important role of regulation breaks in helping students to perform academically. Learn when and how to give breaks and the types of activities during a break that can help students become regulated, and ready to learn.

Fidgets (1 hour)

Fidgets can be a helpful tool to help some students stay regulated and focused during the school day. The key is to find the right fidget. This presentation will explore different kinds of sensory experiences that a variety of fidgets can help meet students’ needs. It also covers how to utilize fidgets through a universal approach for all students or a targeted approach for specific students. When done the right way, fidgets can work very well in a classroom.

Mental Health Considerations in the Classroom Through a Trauma-Informed Lens (1 hour)

Managing classroom behaviors is challenging but may be more so when working with students who have mental health issues. Teachers are not mental health professionals but can be equipped with strategies to implement if they encounter students manifesting signs or symptoms of mental illness. This includes the importance of a multidisciplinary team to best support students’ mental health needs. This presentation looks at childhood mental health diagnoses that you may encounter and offers trauma-informed, brain and body-based activities that are helpful to proactively support students’ regulation in your classroom. We review some of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on youth mental health and the importance of supportive relationships at school to balance that stress.