Wow, this is a hectic and stressful time for educators! In addition to being separated physically from the people and places that typically offer relief, we’re now tasked with re-envisioning teaching and learning. This places great strain on each of us.
Amidst the chaos, we applaud your creative efforts to continue to provide emergency remote learning during this disruption. We know it's not easy.
The good news? Young children inherently know how to learn!
We’ve been collaborating with the early childhood experts who developed Connect4Learning to curate resources you can share with families to implement at-home learning in approachable, “bite-sized” chunks. (We've heard that the long lists of websites and additional resources tend to be overwhelming and counterproductive for parents and educators alike!)
Start off with this at-home social emotional activity, and share with families today.
Social Emotional Activity to Share with Families:
Tucker the Turtle Takes Time to Tuck and Think at Home
Tucker the Turtle, a key fixture in the Connect4Learning curriculum, is a great tool that teaches children helpful calming strategies. Introduce him to families by sharing that Tucker the Turtle sometimes gets angry or upset, but he has a “turtle way” to calm down.
Invite families to read this scripted story (available in English and Spanish) recommended by Connect4Learning expert Mary Louise Hemmeter to learn the “turtle way” to calm down when angry.
Practice makes perfect! Suggest that families practice the turtle way with their children after reading the book.
Make it real, act it out. Have children identify something that makes them angry, scared or sad, and have them act out the steps Tucker taught them to calm down.
Designate calming spaces. Suggest families designate special calm-down places in the home, such as a small fort or cozy chair. Encourage families to reassure children that it is fine to “act like a turtle” in the calm-down place.
Share your successes! Invite families to share photographs of their child doing the steps—looking mad/scared/sad, stopping with the stop sign, tucking into their “shells,” and thinking of solutions.
Be creative! Have more ideas? Share them with the families in your class!
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