My students need a weighted blanket, emotion photo cards and other hands-on games to help support their emotional needs and understanding; items they can use to learn about emotions to help them when they are struggling with their emotions.
All of my students are diagnosed with emotional, behavioral, and social disabilities. They struggle to control their feelings and behavior in an effort to maintain a calm demeanor while they try to navigate through their school day. Often, they are easily frustrated during routine academic demands, miscues during social interactions, and internal stimuli that they are unable to express verbally.
Several of my students also have a dual diagnosis of autism, health and/or developmental delay, which further hinders their emotional, behavioral, and social growth.
They have needs that cannot be met in the typical classroom. For instance, many of my students cannot tolerate other students to look at them, speak to them, or to touch them. They struggle to be accepted and to accept others. It takes a lot of consistent effort and creativity to help my students feel safe in their surroundings. I feel like we are at a point where we should spend more time bonding in pairs or teams; working on projects on a carpet, encouraging movement and teaching peer trust.
All day long, we work with these students to try to build enduring relationships, build trust, tolerance and to improve self-esteem.
My students need a weighted blanket to help them feel safe and secure when they are struggling with their emotions. They need hands-on games and role-playing opportunities to learn about emotions and strategies for coping. One of the things I plan to do with the cards I am hoping to get is to velcro them on to their desks. For instance, sometimes students do not have the words to describe how they are feeling, but they will be able to identify an emotional card that they could then attach to the front of their desks; letting the teacher know, without drawing attention, that support is needed.
These materials will help my students to learn about emotions, their own and how other people may be feeling; the materials will also help them when they need support managing their emotions.
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