Hitting The Reset Button This New Year
The beginning of the school year is typically a busy and chaotic time of year for both adults and their children. We often do not have a chance to catch our breath and give ourselves a chance to recharge and reset as we enter this time of the year. However, the Jewish calendar is planned out beautifully where we have a dedicated time every fall to recharge, reflect and reset when celebrating Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish New Year) and Yom Kippur (The Day Atonement). It is important that we take advantage of this restful period to start the new year off right.
As adults, we sometimes forget that it is important to take advantage of this time to support our own mental and emotional needs. And while we sometimes forget this important practice, our early childhood classrooms provide us with a great example of how to take advantage of this time and regulate our emotions. Inside our classrooms, we focus on building a safe environment where children can recharge, go at their own pace, explore their emotions, and learn reset practices that are best for them.
While teaching our children these skills to regulate their emotions, a tangible reset button was developed to support our classrooms. Guided by the children, one classroom talked about the idea that sometimes when you are feeling like you are moving too fast, your behaviors aren’t in alignment with caring for yourself or others, or when you just feel overwhelmed it’s okay to pause and reset. The class talked about where their personal reset button might be so that they could press it. Maybe it was their ear, belly button, or nose – they discovered everyone has their own! But another fun, creative reset button was right around the corner.
In our early childhood classrooms, students were heavily interested in colored masking tape, and they used it to tape up tables and chairs, and they even taped the whole permitter of the classroom! It was spectacular to witness their intentionality and creativity. One child used the tape to create fun tape squares for her friends, teachers, and family. She would sit with her roll of tape and scissors and fold the tape meticulously into a square and share her pride in what she had created. Our teachers and students realized the tape squares were another perfect tool to use to create personal reset buttons. By the end of that week, every student who requested one had a reset button made by their friend, with the support of the teacher.
As the new year begins and we take this time to reflect, refocus and recharge, we must remember that part of caring for yourself and others is knowing when to reset. It may perhaps be useful and fun to create your own ‘reset button’ this High Holiday season. Just like in our early childhood classrooms, you never know when you’ll discover the perfect reset tool, so we ask: What will be your reset button in this new year?