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Middle School Self-Regulation Lesson

School specialists play a crucial role in teaching middle school students how to manage their emotions. A middle school self-regulation lesson can offer students essential skills to navigate their feelings.

Middle School Self-Regulation Lesson: A Step-by-Step Guide

Objective: Teach students how to use self-regulation strategies to manage heightened emotions.

Materials Needed: Nothing, just your enthusiasm!

Step 1: Discussing Self-Regulation (5 minutes)

First, kick off your middle school self-regulation lesson by defining self-regulation. Talk about how this skill enables us to manage our emotions, behaviors, and even body movements when faced with challenging situations.

Activity: Emotional Thermometer

Introduce the Emotional Thermometer, a visual tool for understanding different emotional states. Label ‘calm’ at the bottom and ‘overwhelmed’ at the top. Engage students in identifying various emotions and their corresponding points on the thermometer.

Step 2: Unmasking Triggers (5 minutes)

Next up in your middle school self-regulation lesson, explain triggers: situations that can spark strong emotional responses. Create a safe space for students to share examples of what might trigger them to feel upset or overwhelmed.

Activity: Triggers and Reactions

Prompt students to recall instances when they felt upset and what caused those feelings. Encourage them to identify their triggers and reactions to better manage their emotions.

Step 3: Learning Self-Regulation Strategies (15 minutes)

Next, introduce students to various self-regulation strategies, including deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, visualization, mindfulness, and distraction techniques. Explain how these strategies can help them keep their emotions in check.

Activity: Hands-on Self-Regulation

Additionally, use our free printable worksheet and talk through each question prompt together as a group or allow each student to fill in answers independently. If students answer on their own, come back together to share and discuss answers.

Divide the class into groups, with each group practicing a different self-regulation strategy of their choice (deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, mindfulness or meditation, visualization, distraction or self-care techniques). Then, have them present the techniques to their peers. It’s an active learning experience that helps them understand and remember the strategies better.

Step 4: Conclusion (5 minutes)

Lastly, end your middle school self-regulation lesson by reinforcing the importance of practicing these strategies. Let students know that mastering self-regulation is a journey and that these strategies will help them maintain calmness and focus over time.

Sample Video

Students learn best from watching real students their own age model skills. Try out this sample video-modeling lesson below. We offer our entire Social-Emotional Learning platform free for 30 days here!

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