What is Zones of Regulation?
- The Zones of Regulation is a curriculum geared toward helping pupils gain skills in consciously regulating their actions
- Helps pupils recognise when they are in different states called ‘Zones’.
- Pupils learn how to use strategies or tools to stay in a zone or move from one to another.
- Pupils explore calming techniques, cognitive strategies and sensory supports so they will have a toolbox of methods.
Support pupils to read others’ facial expressions and recognise a broader range of emotions, perspectives about how other see and react to their behaviour, insight into events that trigger their less regulated states and when and how to use tools
Who can benefit from Zones of Regulation?
- Anybody who struggles with self-regulation
- Initially it was developed for pupils with ASD, ADHD, Tourette syndrome, ODD, selective mutism, conduct disorder and anxiety disorder.
- However, the curriculum can reach a much broader population.
- The lessons are designed to be used with pupils from 4 years old.
Critical Neurological Components
- Sensory Processing ~ Make sense of the information perceived by your sensory receptors. Difficulties in regulation can result from people not being able to filter out stimuli vs Hypo-responsive – Seeking intense input
- Executive Functioning ~ A control centre – Oversees actions and mental operations
- Our ability to Self-regulate depends on the effectiveness of these functions; planning, organisation, self-control, time management, attention, flexibility
- Emotional Regulation ~ The ability to manage our emotions. “Anyone can become angry, that is easy…but to be angry with the right person, to the right degree, at the right time, for the right purpose and in the right way…that is not easy.”
Blue Zone: low states of alertness, when the body’s brain is moving slowly or sluggishly
Green Zone: regulated state of alertness, show control
Yellow Zone: heightened state of alertness, with some control. Slightly elevated emotions and states, starting to lose some control
Red Zone: Extremely heightened state of alertness or very intense feelings. Being overwhelmed by your own feelings and having a loss of control.
- Everyone experiences all of the Zones at one time or another.
- Teach children to figure out what behaviours are expected in given circumstances and determine if they need to manage their behaviours while in different Zones to meet the demands of the situation.
- Teach them tools that help them regulate and move between Zones.
- Zones is neutral, no judgement is made when helping children recognise their levels of alertness and their feelings
- Provide positive reinforcement when children are able to manage any of their Zones with expected behaviours or make efforts to use tools to regulate their Zone.
- When they are in a zone, a simple acknowledgement or labelling of that Zone will be helpful in recognising when they are there.
More information on the Zones of Regulation can be found by clicking on the link below:
The Zones of Regulation | A Curriculum For Emotional Regulation.