What Should You Add To Your Calm Corner?
What Is The Goal Of A Calm Corner?
The items you add to your calm corner should help your students with that goal. If it dosen’t. it’s ok to put it away!
Here are 7 things you can add to your calm corner.
Children have complex emotions, but they mostly understand “happy”, “sad”, or “angry”. But other emotions like “frustrated”, “disappointed”, or “nervous” might be a little complicated for them to understand.
That’s why it’s important for your students to identify their feelings and emotions. Adding posters like these into your calm corner will help your student choose which emotion they are currently feeling. Knowing how they feel, and knowing that it’s a normal emotion is the first step for your students to self-regulate.
Adding emotion posters to your calm corner is really important.
If you don’t have a lot of room in your classroom to put full size posters, you can use them to teach your students the different emotions, but have emotion cards on keyrings available instead.
These are great because your students can hold them, flip through them, maybe choose their feeling and hang it on a command hook on the wall, or even take it back to their desks.
I kept both posters and cards at my calm corner. Some students like the posters, and some like the cards. So I offered both.
Calming Strategy Posters
Once your students are able to identify their emotions, now it’s time to introduce calming strategies. These are techniques which help regulate your students emotions. For example, if a student is nervous, deep breathing is a great calming strategy.
So it makes sense to add calming strategy posters to your calm corner also.
Having a choice between several strategies will help your students. Some might do well hugging a stuffed animal. Others might need to squeeze the heck out of a stress ball.
Calming Strategies Cards
And just like the emotions poster, you can add these onto a keyring. And again, this is useful because it’s smaller and portable. If you have a students having a difficult time with regulating their emotions, you can keep one of these at their desks too.
Keep Track Of Time With Sand Timers
Remember when we talked about how the goal of your calm corner was to regulate emotions and return to the class? Adding sand timers helps your students keep track of how long they’ve been to your calm corner. You can grab them from Amazon here. This set is nice because it has different amounts of time. Those are affilliate links – if I get enough clicks, Jeff Bezozs will send me to space!
Teaching your students to keep an eye on the timer while they’re at your calm corner helps them know that they have a job to do. Most students can do this by the time the sand goes down. But you know your students, if they need more time, by all means give it to them. It’s meant to help them stay on task, not add extra pressure.
Add Comfort With A Soft Rug
Another must in your calm corner is a soft rug for them to sit on. You can also add a sensory chair if you have one, but I’ve found that kids like to sit on a nice soft rug.
If you have an area that is set up already for your students, the rug can stay there. But if you have a smaller room, your students can carry this rug to any place in their classroom that’s safe and private.
Plus, it just makes the area look relaxing and comfortable. So a rug is a must for your calm corner.
What Should I Add To My Calm Corner Sensory Tub?
Alright, now let’s talk about sensory items. You’ll want a small tub of items that can help your students regulate their emotions. But you don’t want just anything for them to play with. You want these to be used along with your calming strategies.
If your students manage anger for example, by squeezing a stress ball, then put a stress ball in your tub.
If your students need to hug a stuffed animal, add one to your calm corner. If your students enjoy relaxing by drawing, add coloring pages such as this one.
Remember, think fun AND function. Whatever you add to your calm corner needs to serve a purpose. Otherwise, it’s okay to put it away.