This week in Shale we explored lots of water, sand and sensory play. We also had the chance to explore the snow and make structures. We took a break focusing on movement and had decided to focus more on our new shale friends, routine and self regulation.
What is self-regulation and why is it important?
In the report from Neurons to Neighborhoods: The Science of Early Childhood Development, Shonkoff and Phillips (2000) it defines self-regulation as a child’s ability to gain control of bodily functions, manage powerful emotions, and maintain focus and attention.
Self soothing is extremely important for young toddlers to develop, as they start growing attachments to new people they will also begin developing self regulating skills and be able to adjust to new and sometimes unsettling (to the child) environments and routine. Children begin learning how to self regulate by watching their parents or caregivers manage their own emotions and interactions with others.
In Shale, there are a few ways that some our friends like to practice their self regulations skills. For example: they may reach for a hug, need a certain stuffed animal or a pillow to snuggle with, listen to their favourite song, or even require some personal space in order calm their bodies with no interruptions to process what’s going on.
Along with the different methods, time also plays a factor for each child. We all go through identifying the best process to help regulate our emotions at different rates. Some of us are able to find that ideal method right away, and adapt to changes in our routines and environment quickly, while others may take a while. That’s what makes us all unique.
What does self regulation look like in your home?
Enjoy the snowy weekend, we sure enjoyed some outside play today in the snow!
Sarah, Cassi and Michelle