Hug and hang on – it’s holiday time! The holidays are magical for our littles and can often make for unpredictable schedules in their world ~ especially at home. Unpredictability often leads to challenging behavior. Here are some tips to help your classroom run a bit smoother and help our students manage the fun and strain of holiday time.
- Maintain a schedule as much as possible.
- Review the schedule at each transition.
- Use visuals to indicate a change in the schedule.
- Reinforce positive behaviors more frequently.
- Review behavioral expectations before each transition.
- Provide time for students to label and talk about their emotions.
- Incorporate more quiet time in your day; your students need time to de-compress and regenerate.
- Be patient and unhurried ~ parents are struggling with these traits during this time.
- Provide time in the day where students can talk about the special holiday activities they have with their families.
- Provide families with the attached handout – How to Plan Activities to Reduce Challenging Behaviors, Backpack Connection Series by TACSEI (Technical Assistance Center on Social Emotional Intervention).
Because their little lives are experiencing the stress of the holiday season, it is important to provide them with more predictability and structure than typical (think back to the beginning of the year when students were just learning your behavioral expectations and the routines of the classroom). Extra patience and grace will go along way to maintain a happy and healthy classroom environment for all.