Foundational skills of resiliency are often overlooked when it comes to the classroom. Making a meaningful connection with students can be the first step toward making sure they develop the appropriate components of resilience. Resilience in children comes in a variety of forms including but not limited to;
- Self-compassion Research
- Resourceful thoughts
Spending students' time properly focused on the regulation of their positive emotions is vital to their level of foundational skills in resiliency. We've provided 30 resilience-building principles that will minimize unhelpful thinking and maximize coping skills for negative events, while also building on students' current resilience levels.-
1. Spotting Supportive Relationships
Students often have a hard time setting boundaries with their friends. Teaching proper social skills is something teachers are deemed responsible for, even if it's not part of the curriculum. Teach your students about building and maintaining supportive relationships with this activity!
Learn more: Counselor Keri
2. Mindfulness Breathing Cards
Practice mindfulness in your class with a physical and independent exercise like these mindfulness breathing cards. Your students will constantly be searching for these cards when feeling intense emotions.
Learn more: Etsy
3. Calming Glitter Jar
Resilience exercises come in many different forms, some are just teaching our students to have a strong sense of control. Build a strong foundation for resilience in your kiddos by introducing different mechanisms that are going to help calm their emotions, like this calming glitter jar!
Learn more: Fireflies and Mudpies
4. Listen to the Bell Calming Exercise
We all know how stressful everyday life can be, for us and for our little learners. Sometimes students really need some guidance through the tough times. School teachers providing opportunities to listen to different meditations can do exactly that. Introduce practical tools to your students, like this bell calming exercise.
Learn more: School Mental Health Ontario
5. Heartbeat Connections
Connecting your mind and body can be challenging but is an important element of resilience. Your school students sometimes are in desperate need of a self-compassion break. They can find this by finding a connection to their heartbeats.
Learn more: The Partnership In Education
6. Gratitude Through Your Senses
The practice of gratitude is a concept of an authentic life. As adults, we are constantly hearing about gratitude, even if we sometimes ignore it. Build this foundational skill at a young age for your school students. They will connect back to this throughout their entire lives.
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7. Understanding Resilience
How are students and teachers expected to be building resilience if they don't even have a total understanding of what it is? The road to resilience must start simply, with a basic understanding of the principles of resilience.
Learn more: Mindy Sawvel
8. Create Your Own Counseling Game
Don't waste your student's time on a mindfulness activity that they won't enjoy! The road to resilience should feel good and essentially be a fun part of your student's learning. Use games like this gameboard creation to teach the different elements of resilience to your school students.
Learn more: WholeHearted School Counseling
9. Calm Down Kits for Your Classroom
A difficult time can arise in the classroom more quickly than a qualified teacher can sometimes react. Providing school students with excellent tools to reduce students' anxieties directly in their classroom is something that will be super beneficial not only to students but also to school teachers.
Learn more: Natalie Lynn Kindergarten
10. 5 Finger Breathing Exercise
Making a meaningful connection to our body parts is a piece of emotional resilience that should come at the top of the list. Bringing art and fun into resilience activities can build a positive relationship with your school students and their connection to mindfulness.
Learn more: Childhood 101
11. Trace and Breathe Rainbows
It's no doubt that rainbows bring happiness to the majority of people who come into contact with them, whether it's in a picture or in real life. Using a prop that is already associated with positive emotions can give school students a leg up on their calmness level throughout this breathing exercise.
Learn more: The OT Toolbox
12. Let Your Worries Fly
Teaching resilience to adolescents and older elementary students can be a daunting task. Coming up with your own resilience lesson planning isn't easy. Try an activity like this and bring in some physical activity by having students fold up their thoughts and actually letting the balloons go (you can get biodegradable ones here).
Learn more: Myle Marks
13. Know Your Level
Social skills like understanding how big your problem actually is can help build on a few different elements of resilience. Having a poster like this somewhere in the classroom can help students confidently check-in.
Learn more: Kids Mental Health Pierce Country
14. Read Aloud Resilience
Finding different stories that encourage and teach resilience to children can be difficult at first, but easy once you start searching. I Am Courage By Susan Verde is one of my students' favorite books!
15. 3-Minute Scans
There are tons of different resources for resilience lessons on different video platforms throughout the internet. This video has proven to be one of our favorites. It's definitely a great source for lesson plans in the future!
Learn more: Fablefy - The Whole Child
16. Self-Esteem Bucket
Making a human connection to other people and other people's feelings can be challenging, especially for older students. Use this activity to teach resilience to adolescents by letting them reflect on their personal strengths and weaknesses.
Learn more: The Therapist Parent
17. Emotions Are Like Clouds
Components of resilience come in many different forms. For students, it's hard to build the mental strength to not only understand, but also work through all of these emotions. Nurturing a strong sense of independence in understanding their emotions will be exceedingly beneficial for students.
Learn more: Canyon Grove
18. Mindfulness Safari
Whether it's sparked by a stressful event, or tough times, going on a mindful safari will be just as fun for you as it is for your students! Bring school to life with this excellent resource on building positive thinking habits! A must-have resource for your resilience lesson planning.
Learn more: Hey Sigmund
19. Understanding Perspectives
Understanding different perspectives will not only significantly build your student's social skills, but will also equip them with stable emotional resilience. During bad times and good, students will need this element of resilience to get through aspects of negative feelings and unhelpful thinking.
Learn more: Literacy in Focus
20. Challenging Games
Another great source for lesson plans that may be used during a week of heavy student workload or on an easy day is learning to use and enhance current resiliency skills while playing games. Maintaining a selection of excellent tools should be at the top of your objectives. Games for Change will provide students with a meaningful connection.
Learn more: Games for Change
21. Resilience Promotions
Constantly providing visuals for students to build a strong foundation for resilience is a favorable method of building positive thinking habits. Understanding the different parts of the brain can help students more easily process negative feelings, unhelpful thinking, and of course positive emotions.
Learn more: Mindset Works
22. Brain Training Activities
Even as adults we're taught to train our brains to handle difficult situations. Therefore, providing students with this emotional resilience tool will become a personal resource that will hopefully follow them for the entirety of their lives.
Learn more: Smitten with First
23. Resilience Acknowledgments
Making a meaningful connection to themselves and their peers can be the push that students need to get past that negative feeling. Keep positive thinking habits and positive emotions in full force throughout your classroom with these brag bracelets!
Learn more: Green Grubs Garden Club
24. Growth Mindset in Conversation
Conversation is a foundation for resilience in educators and students. Communicating with your students is an excellent time to model situations and a positive quality of life. Using these dice to spark growth mindset conversations can help build on current resiliency skills students have acquired.
Learn more: Rock your Homeschool
25. Classroom Resilience Mantras
Hands down a must-have resource for the classroom is a poster promoting positive thinking habits. Excellent tools like this have your classroom filled with positive emotions and your students constantly working on their foundational skills.
Learn more: Big Life Journal
26. Worry Hearts
Worry hearts can be used in difficult situations reminding students that someone loves them and cares about them. Having this belief built into your brain will build a strong level of emotional resilience in the future.
Learn more: Sunny Day Family
27. Courage Jar
I believe that there should be small components of resilience set up throughout your classroom and even throughout your home. After all, the road to resilience can't be built overnight. Having a courage jar like this will help students through bad times, good times, and just when they need a little extra motivation.
Learn more: Sunny Day Family
28. Emotional Check-Ins
An emotional check-in board like this can be a huge benefit to school teachers just as it is to school students. Not only can school students talk about their feelings but maybe show some compassionate feelings to other students.
Learn more: Raymi Royo
29. Classroom Positive Affirmations
A super simple self-compassion exercise can be taking the time to simply look at yourself in the mirror and reflect on all the beautiful things that make you, you. This with build a foundation for resilience every time a student looks in the mirror, keeping that a positive relationship.
Learn more: Teachers Pay Teachers
30. Take What You Need Board
Another example that could fall into your components of resilience resources is this excellent source. Building resilience in children is never easy, but providing usable tools for students' time can be very beneficial and make it a bit easier.
Learn more: Goalexandria