George Lucas Educational Foundation

Using Anchors for Emotional Regulation

When given the space to regulate themselves with simple practices, students learn how to soothe their own nervous systems in moments of stress—and contribute to a sense of calm in the classroom.

May 31, 2024

At every age and grade level, students can become emotionally dysregulated throughout the day, distracting from class work and contributing to the overall level of tension in the room. But when  encouraged to identify simple, personalized tools—or “anchors”—for grounding themselves that they can access at any time, and given regular reminders to connect with those anchors, students of all ages can practice the ability to regulate themselves in moments when they feel triggered, which leads to more emotional stability. From a simple stretch, to grabbing a peppermint, to thinking of a trusted adult, finding ways to anchor oneself emotionally can pave the path to a smoother experience in and out of class.

This social and emotional learning strategy was shared by educator Lori Desautels. To learn more, read her article for Edutopia titled “A Daily Practice That Students Can Use for Self-Regulation.”

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Filed Under

  • Social & Emotional Learning (SEL)
  • Mental Health
  • Student Wellness
  • 3-5 Upper Elementary
  • 6-8 Middle School

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