Why Teach Self-Regulation using the Zones of Regulation?
Self regulation is recognising when we are becoming less regulated, and having strategies to use to manage our feelings and get ourselves to a healthy place. This is a skill that can require more attention and practice. This is the goal of The Zones of Regulation, to teach healthy coping and regulation strategies
Feelings are complicated. They come in different sizes, intensities, and levels of energy that are unique within our brains and bodies. To make them easier to talk about, think about, and regulate, The Zones of Regulation organizes our feelings, states of alertness, and energy levels into four coloured Zones Blue, Green, Yellow, and Red.
The Blue Zone is used to describe low states of alertness and down feelings such as when one feels sad, tired, sick, or bored.
The Green Zone is used to describe a calm state of alertness. A person may be described as happy, focused, content, or ready to learn when in the Green Zone. This is the zone where optimal learning occurs.
The Yellow Zone is also used to describe a heightened state of alertness and elevated emotions, however one has more control when they are in the Yellow Zone. A person may be experiencing stress, frustration, anxiety, excitement, silliness, the wiggles, or nervousness when in the Yellow Zone.
The Red Zone is used to describe extremely heightened states of alertness and intense emotions. A person may be elated or experiencing anger, rage, devastation, or terror when in the Red Zone.
The Zones of Regulation provides a common language to discuss emotions – a language that is non judgemental and provides strategies to teach pupils to become more aware of and independent in controlling their emotions and impulses, manage their sensory needs, and improve their ability to problem solve conflicts.