Managing the emotional climate of your classroom is crucial to learning. When children are struggling to manage anxiety, ADHD and anger, they can’t focus on the academic tasks expected of them in a classroom setting. By teaching kids simple, healthy and safe ways to express their emotions and calm their bodies, they will be better able to concentrate on their work during the school day. The positive impact healthy coping skills will have on a child’s academic performance is truly transformational.
In this seminar, we’ll learn how coping skills impact a student’s nervous system, and how to use that knowledge to help kids calm their bodies and get ready to learn. Watch coping skills expert and experienced school counsellor Janine Halloran, LMHC as she shows you coping skills and techniques ideal for a classroom.
Walk away with a coping skills toolbox:
- Deep breathing printables
- Check in sheets
- ”Anxiety thermometer”
- Relaxation exercises
- ”What’s your play personality?”
- And many more
Be prepared for experiential learning and movement as we try different coping skills like grounding techniques, breathing exercises, and big body movements throughout the day.
Janine Halloran, MA, LMHC, is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor with over 20 years of experience working with children, teens and their families. She is the founder and CEO of Coping Skills for Kids, where she creates and curates tools & resources to help adults teach kids healthy ways to deal with stress, anxiety and anger. She is the author of the Coping Skills for Kids Workbook: Over 75 Coping Strategies to Help Kids Deal with Stress, Anxiety and Anger (PESI, 2018) and Social Skills for Kids: Over 75 Fun Games & Activities for Building Better Relationships, Problem Solving & Improving Communication (PESI, 2018). She is an NBC Parent Toolkit Expert and has written articles featured on their blog. In addition, she has written for several other publications, including Hey Sigmund, Confident Families Confident Kids and Bay State Parent Magazine. She’s worked in a variety of settings, including schools, residential programs and outpatient mental health facilities. She is in private practice and offers consultation.
Financial: Janine Halloran is the co-founder and CEO of Coping Skills for Kids and Encourage Play, LLC. She is a counselor with BetterHelp. Ms. Halloran is a published author and receives royalties. She receives a speaking honorarium, book royalties, and recording royalties from PESI, Inc. She has no relevant financial relationships with ineligible organizations.
Non-financial: Janine Halloran has no relevant non-financial relationships.
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- Develop strategies for teaching kids coping skills that positively impact academic performance and their ability to maintain relationships.
- Analyze how the nervous system response of “fight, flight or freeze” is connected to stress and communicate how coping skills can be used to shift kids to a more tranquil “rest and digest” response.
- Execute a classroom routine that allows for breaks to benefit both hypo-arousal and hyper-arousal in kids with ADHD.
- Utilize mindfulness and grounding techniques that can be used to help children manage their symptoms of anxiety.
- Employ methods to determine the source of stress and create a plan to eliminate shutting down or acting out.
- Utilize specific movement-based strategies that can effectively intervene in kids’ anger responses.
Coping Skills Overview
SKILLS AND STRATEGIES: INTERACTIVE EXERCISES
- The autonomic nervous system & coping skills
- 4 types of coping skills—
- Coping skills checklist to identify current skills and strengths
- The Importance of preventative interventions
- 3 prong approach to supporting children’s social/emotional needs
Deep Breathing - Beyond “Taking a Deep Breath”
Coping Skills for Anxiety/Stress
- Props —
- stuffed animals
- Hoberman sphere
- Words —
- to encourage deep breath
- “smell the soup
- cool down the soup”
- Shapes —
- star breathing
- lazy 8 breathing
- square breathing
- triangle breathing
- Your Body —
- your hand
- whole body movement
Coping Skills for ADHD
- Mindfulness Practice—
- One mindful minute
- Spiderman mindfulness
- Audio and visual mindfulness scripts
- Grounding Techniques—
- 54321 grounding
- Alphabet grounding
- Identifying and Taming Anxiety—
- Take-home worksheets to help identify anxiety
- Thermometer for anxiety worksheet
- “Sources of stress” worksheet
Coping Skills for Anger/Frustration
- Movement Breaks
- wall push-ups
- music and movement
- Sensory Ideas
- proper fidget use
- calming jars
- using senses (tactile, hearing, visual, auditory, etc...)
- The Importance of Play
- open-ended play ideas
- Small physical movement activities to manage frustration—
- squeezing play dough
- scribble drawing
- bubble wrap
- ripping paper
- Big physical movement activities to manage anger—
- jumping jacks
- obstacle courses
- Processing anger—
- comic strip processing
- what I can control vs. what I can’t control worksheet
Practical Implementation Ideas for the Classroom or Office
- Make a coping skills toolkit for your room—
- coping skills cue cards
- other visuals
- Distraction coping skills—
- word searches
- hidden pictures
- Creating a calm down spot/calm down room—
- identify a good spot create an area that
- is peaceful and relaxing
- coping skills toolkit
- Practice your own coping skills—
- mindfulness and self-care worksheet
- School Psychologists
- Social Workers
- Marriage & Family Therapists
- Occupational Therapists
- Occupational Therapy Assistants
- Speech-Language Pathologists
- Other Mental Health Professionals