How many early childhood educators have silently wished there was a switch they could flick that would instantly calm down overly eager students when no other techniques prove effective? You have created a balanced environment that satisfies the needs of both your hyperactive student(s) and the rest of the children; but still, that optimal environment is not enough. What to do? Here are a couple of quick calming techniques** one of our Super Star Occupational Therapists at Houston Gateway Academy recommends that should do the trick for hyperactive students, and adults alike.
Flatten your hands, palms down. Place your hands, fingers firmly together, on the trapezius muscles– the top of the shoulders. In your head, say, “Down – 2 – 3, Hold – 2 – 3, Up – 2 – 3”. As you repeat those lines, press down on the shoulders, hold for three counts, and release. Do this 6 or 7 times, or until calm.
Touch is a very important, oft overlooked, aspect of human interaction. It seems particularly important with those who are hyperactive.
Deep Frog Hops
Ask your student to bend their knees, getting as low to the floor as they are able. When they are ready, ask them to pop up, jumping as high as they can. This old yoga technique might sound counter-intuitive but it releases excess energy, leading to calm.
** Consult with your Center Administrator before trying anything.
Here are some additional resources for educators to help with increasing the productivity of high energy students using calming techniques: