The Clam Down Corner was not in a “corner” in my classroom, so we called it “mindful Moment.” Students were able to take a Mindful Moment when they felt they needed to reset. Teachers also had the opportunity to give a student a “Mindful Moment” toke as a signal to take a break. All students benefitted from these resources and it was a great addition to my classroom that I will continue to use each year!
My kids really liked the Calm Down Corner. It made them feel safe and gave them a chance to regroup when they felt stressed.
I really appreciate having a Calm Down Corner in our classroom because it empowers children and supports a calm and respectful classroom culture! Children can go there to calm down if they are feeling stressed or upset, or even if they are hyper and have to settle themselves. It is great to empower children to recognize this in themselves and find their voices to ask for time in this calming space. Sometimes in our large class, a child may just need to step off for a few minutes to reset. I love how the children respect each other enough to recognize that they may need this time or when others need it. It is supportive of our PBIS objectives of Respectful, Responsible, Safe, and Kind! I even use it after the AM Kinders leave to reset for my afternoon!
The calming corner is a safe space where my students feel they can reset, refocus, and process emotions. We have been using this method for about two years in the classroom with excellent results. Students know they can ask anytime for a break in the calming corner and some even find it a safe space to work with partners on different activities. This year I have two separate spaces so that more students can utilize the calming corner method at one time. I find that it is often needed after recess and towards the end of the day. It ties in nicely with our new wellness curriculum and students are now seeing calming corners in all areas of the school. It continues to promote a sense of mental well-being and safety which is something that I strive to achieve in my classroom environment.
Calm down corners help children to practice identifying feelings and emotions to better manage stress, self-regulate and control their impulses. It has been a positive addition to our classrooms at South Elementary. Students are aware that they are accessible in each room they encounter. Even if they are not using the specific space at times, they are using the “tools” to help focus on an assignment at their learning space. Teachers have incorporated creative ways to involve Zen Zones for self-calming, and mindfulness strategies to help make respectful and responsible choices.
My students have been using the calm down corner in my classroom all year. With the funds provided to South Elementary from the foundation, my students have had a space where they can go to regroup, process their feelings, and “take 5” before returning to the activity we are involved in. Throughout the year, students have advocated for when they need to use the calm down corner. Having this space within the classroom has allowed for little to no disruption to their learning or the learning of others.
The calm corner has been a beneficial and welcome addition to our fourth-grade classroom. Many students have benefitted from the opportunity to take a breath, reset themselves, and come back to the lesson ready to go. I have one student, in particular, this year who has been helped by the ability to use the calm corner. When this student starts feeling overwhelmed, he gets upset, frustrated, and starts shutting down. Without the opportunity to step back and take a minute, the situation continues to get worse. The calm corner has been the perfect place for this student to get that breather and take time to refocus. We have a signal either one of us can use if we see a need for the calm corner. I love that it does not interrupt the whole group lesson or call negative attention to this student in front of others. The timer is right there for the student to set, and when time is up, he knows to come back to the whole group. Almost every time this student has used the calm corner, it has helped to decrease his frustration and he comes back to the whole group in a better mood. He jumps right back into what we are working on and is in a much better place to tackle the assignment that was frustrating to begin with. An added bonus of having the calm corner in the classroom is that students can still hear what the class is doing, so when time is up, they usually know exactly what the class is doing and are easily able to rejoin us. The calm corner has been a great space to support students who need a few minutes to take a break and refocus, so they can come back ready to give their best effort!
I am pleased to share the final piece of the inclusive playground equipment was installed in early January and we couldn’t be happier! Students of all abilities are enjoying tic-tac-toe, making music, and gathering around to take turns with the shifting sands panel. Thank you for supporting this grant request and helping to make recess a more inclusive experience for our children.
I wanted to express my sincere gratitude to you and the Foundation for approving and funding the purchase of the FlipForms for the music classroom at South. We have been thoroughly enjoying them over the past few weeks and are excited to explore them even more. Attached are a few pictures from a Kindergarten music class.
In 2011, the Foundation supplied an iPad and an Apple TV to our computer lab that teaches computer science courses. The engagement, interaction and excitement that this new technology has created for my students create an ideal learning environment. It has truly transformed the way I teach. Recently, the donations received from Ambler Savings Bank allowed the Foundation to purchase 10 iPads for student use. Specifically we plan on creating and testing apps and learning how the hardware and software interact. It is something we have never been able to do and it is made possible by the generosity of community members, administration and the Foundation. Thank you for giving me the tools to make learning cutting edge and exciting!