This has been a very busy, very different summer for me. I have seen clients for speech therapy, executive function skills coaching, Orton Gillingham tutoring and in Social Thinking® skills groups, all in the name of Autastic Avenues. When not seeing clients directly, I have been busy promoting the business.
In addition to all the above, I have been contemplating the “self” in self-regulation and the executive function of the self. I have been going a bit deeper in my thinking about the strategies that we provide to our kiddos and more importantly how we help them to use the strategies in a time of need. Are we really teaching our students that the self is the controlling agent and are we as teachers and therapists flexible enough to be proactive and prep them “up front” rather than react to “putting out the fire” when the meltdown occurs? Just thinking…
I have been collecting power tools to add to my toolbox. Here are just a few:
Lauren Brukner is an OT who specializes in sensory integration and self-regulation strategies. Check out her blog at http://awesomeandincontrol.com and her book HOW TO BE A SUPERHERO CALLED SELF-CONTROL! I love super powers, so introducing my young clients to Self-Control is quite fun. His job is “getting kids to feel like super self-control experts!”. This superhero wants to “pass the torch” so that kids can be in control and able to handle frustration, anxiety, sensory issues, anger, and strong emotions.
I have a 4yr. old client who is very “wiggly”. The wiggles happen when one has been sitting too long without getting to move enough. Adults say, “Please control your body” or “Sit still”. How? Our superhero shows us how to Push Your Wiggles, Squeeze Your Wiggles, Squash Your Wiggles, and Cocoon. My client enjoys trying out these super powers. He also likes yoga.
Yoga4Classrooms® looks great for helping all students, not just those with sensory processing disorder or struggles with self-regulation. Yoga4Classrooms® “helps children develop the self-awareness to realize how they feel and what they need; unwind and manage their emotions; guides them through movements that optimize their strength, flexibility and balance; demonstrates healthy habits and reminds them to love and forgive themselves”. Creator, Lisa Flynn, You are singing my song!!
The card deck is full of illustrations to guide conscious breathing (my 4yr old friend likes “Flying Bird Breath”), stretches and postures that provide physical relief from sitting for long periods of time, activities that give opportunities for kids to stretch and strengthen, loosen up activities that improve mood and dispel stress, and Imagination Vacation, which is a child friendly approach to meditation.
Learn more at: http://www.yoga4classrooms.com
Check back for my next post as I continue to share the power tools that I am packing in my toolbox.