January's lessons will begin with introducing the size of the problem. When I speak to students we will be talking about how to look at a problem and figure how big a problem it really is. Then to decide how to react to a problem. I categorize problems into three varieties. Small problems, medium problems, and big problems. Students will show the size of the problem with me by using their hands. They put them together and then leave a small gap for a small problem, and bigger gap for a medium problem, and then stretched as far as they can go for a big problem. A small problem is a problem that a person can solve by themselves and should have a very small reaction. A medium problem is a problem that needs some grown up help but should still have a smaller reaction. A big problem is an emergency and they need to get grown up help right away. I list these as tornados, hurricanes, fires, etc. We talk about how we shouldn't have big reactions to small problems because it makes it harder to solve those problems. We will then read the story "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day
". I will ask the students to rate the size of his problems, which are mostly small, and then ask if he had a good reaction to those problems.
The second lesson will be about the Zones of Regulation
. The Zones are a way to categorize feelings in a manner that makes it easier for students to understand and label without any negative connotation for any feeling. The four zones are the blue, green, yellow, and red zones. Each zone is differentiated by energy level and amount of control an individual has. Blue zone is when a person has a lack of energy and is feeling down as a result. An example of feelings in the blue zone would be sad, tired, sick, and bored. Within the framework of the Zones, none of those feelings are bad. They are something everyone can have which at times are positive or understandable, and times where being in the blue zone is inopportune.