14 Zones of Regulation Activities and Printables for Kids (2023)

What’s inside this article: Various Zones of Regulation activities and printable worksheets, which can be used by counselors, teachers, or parents, as supplemental activities for teaching and reinforcing concepts from The Zones of Regulation curriculum.

14 Zones of Regulation Activities and Printables for Kids (1)

The key to successfully teaching the Zones of Regulation is to spend lots of time solidifying the Zones concepts through repetition and play-based learning activities.

These Zones of Regulation activities and printables will help you do just that.

If the Zones of Regulation is new to you, make sure you read this overview of the Zones for parents, first.

There are a few main components to the Zones that your child should learn sequentially to be successful.

Zones of Regulation Learning Objectives:

  1. What the four zones are and which emotions belong to each zone.
  2. How to identify which zone you are in
  3. What triggers are cause you to move out of the green zone.
  4. How to recognize what zone others are in
  5. Strategies to move back to the green zone from yellow, blue, or red
  6. Expected behavior vs unexpected behavior
  7. Size of the problem
  8. How your actions affect what zone other people are in (comfortable and uncomfortable thoughts)

Zones of Regulation Activities

These Zones of Regulation activities and printables all support the learning objectives above.

1. 22-Page Zones Bundle

I created this 22-page bundle of free zones of regulation printables to make it a bit simpler for people downloading a lot of items from this list. It contains all the freebies in the list, but you’ll also find some free printables exclusive to this bundle, such as “size of the problem” activities, and two different visuals of the four zones.

You can download this free bundle here.

14 Zones of Regulation Activities and Printables for Kids (2)

1. Which Zone Would I Be In If…

This is a simple, printable matching game to help children think about the zones. There are 30 cards, each with a different scenario on it and a main matching page with the four zones, and instructions.

Get your child to choose a card, read it, and then place it on top of the color zone that they think they would be in if the scenario happened to them.

There are no right or wrong answers in the game, the sole purpose is to get children thinking about the zones and about their feelings.

(Video) Zones of Regulation | Self-Regulation Lesson 4

Which Zone Would I Be In If…

2. Which Zone are THEY in?

This game is a lot like the first game, only this time there are different images on the cards of various characters’ faces.

The goal of the game is for your child to analyze the character’s face to determine which zone they’re in.

Then they should place the image on top of the correct color zone.

This game helps children with perspective-taking and encourages them to pay attention to and recognize how other people are feeling.

What Zone are THEY In?

3. Zones of Regulation Bingo

Zones BingofromThe Zones of Regulationhas been adaptedby Alex Hirshfor students familiar with Boardmaker® feelings visuals. I love this activity because it helps kids using boardmaker visuals (often children with autism) become familiar with the symbols for various emotions.

You can print the Zones Bingo from the official Zones website here.

4. When I Get Angry…

Help your child recognize what angry (red zone) feels like in their body.

Not everyone has the same physiological response to anger. Still, there are some pretty common responses, and we all experience some of them.

Go through each of the anger cues on the free printable with your child, and if they feel that the statement is true for them when they’re angry, color it red.

There are no right or wrong answers, everyone experiences anger differently, and this helps your child be more aware of what happens to them when they’re in the red zone.

When I Feel Angry…

(Video) 5 Incredibly Fun GAMES to Teach Self-Regulation (Self-Control) | Social Emotional Learning

5. When I Feel Sad

A lot of times when children feel sad, they actually behave angrily. It may be because they don’t really know what’s going on inside them.

This coloring activity helps get kids thinking about some of the hard feelings associated with sadness that they may feel too vulnerable to share aloud with others.

It creates an opportunity to open a conversation around sadness, where you can reinforce that sadness is normal, temporary, and they can share that feeling with you safely.

When I Feel Sad…

6. Anger and Sadness Booklet for Kids

Social scripts, lessons, discussion questions, and activities related to coping with anger and sadness.Fillable PDF format.

  • Feeling mad social script ($4 value)
  • Feeling sad social script ($4 value)
  • Feeling grumpy social script ($4 value)
  • Coping Skills for Anger and sadness ($6 value)
  • Using Self-control script and STOP strategy ($3 value)
  • Time & Space lesson and discussion ($3 value)
  • Expressing feelings with I statements, lesson, and activity ($5 value)
  • FEEL-mometer – measuring intensity of feelings ($5 value)

7. Interactive Zones Package

This package is available from Teachers Pay Teachers. It includes:

  • Interactive nameplates
  • “What Zone Am I In?” colorful reference cards
  • “How Big is the Problem?” colorful poster with additional teaching visual
  • “What Triggers Me?” graphic organizer
  • daily visual schedule card

This package is excellently illustrated, and the interactive activities and reference visuals are great for elementary age kiddos.

The package is available on TPT here.

14 Zones of Regulation Activities and Printables for Kids (3)
(Video) ✨ Zones Of Regulation ✨ What Are The Zones? ✨ Learning About Feelings And Emotions ✨

8. Don’t Take The Bait

Don’t Take The Bait is a game that I first played with my own kids after my son brought it home from school. They played this game at school as part of their Zones of Regulation curriculum.

This game helps children learn to identify their triggers. In the game, the “bait” is the trigger.

Kids have to choose an effective coping strategy to use, rather than negatively reacting to the trigger (bait).

Kids can act out different situations during the game, demonstrate coping strategies, and even have a little fun acting out negative reactions. It’s a fun way to practice the skills covered by the Zones.

You can get this game from TpT here.

9. Wheel of Emotions for Kids

This wheel of emotions is loosely based on Plutchik’s emotion wheel but themed around the zones of regulation. making it kid-friendly.

It’s created to be used as a tool for kids who can identify which zone they’re in, to start using more complex emotive words to describe their emotions.

Emotions Wheel

10. Communication: Aggressive vs. Assertive

This is four-page printable can be used as a tool for teaching children to communicate assertively, rather than aggressively. (This is also included in the social skills mega bundle, learn more here)

This is helpful for children who become explosive when they don’t get their way.

Assertive Vs Aggressive Communication Skills

11. Name One Thing…

This activity comes in fillable PDF format which is great for those doing distance ed or teletherapy, but you can print it out and use it as a worksheet, too.

Children are shown different, common emotions, and asked to name one thing that makes them feel that way.

(Video) Teaching Self-Regulation by Modeling

This is free to download here.

Name One Thing…

12. Draw A Face – Zones Activity

Kids draw faces on four different, blank character illustrations – each one is wearing a shirt to represent one of the four Zones of Regulation.

Kids can draw a different face on each character to represent the zone they’re in. This helps with categorizing emotions by zone, as well as reading facial expressions.

Draw a Face – Zones Activity

13. Identifying The Zones Interactive Google Slides

You can use this in Google Classroom, for example, with students, or using Microsoft PowerPoint. There are drag-and-drop elements for children to sort based on Zone. Each slide has a different interactive activity that helps children practice identifying the Zones.

Zones of Regulation Interactive Google Slides

14. Inside Out Zones of Regulation Chart

This chart is illustrated with characters from the Inside Out movie to represent the four zones. It includes a list of emotions for each zone, as well as a short description of what a person may look like or act like in each zone.

Inside Out Zones of Regulation Printable

15. Intro to The Zones Powerpoint Presentation

Zones of Regulation Intro PowerPoint

Official Zones of Regulation Posters

The official Zones of Regulation Posters are only available by purchasing them from Social Thinking.

This is where you can also access the curriculum and all of the other official learning resources.

The activities within this blog post are all adapted from the original Zones created by Leah Kuypers.

(Video) What Is My Lizard Brain? | Self-Regulation Lesson 3

Schools, clinics, therapists, and counselors worldwide use the Zones Framework and activities such as these ones, to teach emotional self-regulation to children.

14 Zones of Regulation Activities and Printables for Kids (4)

FAQs

How do you explain the Zones of Regulation to children? ›

There are so many emotions we can feel so to help us out we can think of our emotions fitting into

What age do you introduce Zones of Regulation? ›

The Zones of Regulation is a framework and easy-to-use curriculum for teaching regulation strategies for managing emotions and sensory needs to children, students, and clients ages 4+.

What is the purpose of the Zones of Regulation program? ›

The Zones of Regulation is the original framework and curriculum (Kuypers, 2011) that develops awareness of feelings, energy and alertness levels while exploring a variety of tools and strategies for regulation, prosocial skills, self-care, and overall wellness.

Is Zones of Regulation effective? ›

The Zones of Regulation is certainly a practice based on evidence and has shown positive, measurable outcomes across multiple studies and applications in clinical practice and school-based settings (Zones Research & Scholarly Articles Spreadsheet).

What are Zones of Regulation activities? ›

The Zones of Regulation® program is a self-regulation tool to help kids identify, address, and use strategies to achieve self-control and emotional regulation in a non-judgmental and safe way.

How do Zones of Regulation work at home? ›

How can you help your child use The Zones of Regulation at home? / go into the Green Zone. Put up and reference the Zones visuals and tools in your home. Praise and encourage your child when they share which Zone they are in.

What zone is scared in? ›

Yellow Zone = Stress, scared, frustration, anxiety, excitement, silliness, wiggly, nervous, worried. In this zone, you need to slow down.

What zone is excited? ›

Yellow Zone: more intense emotions and states but able to maintain control, worried, frustrated, silly, excited, scared or overwhelmed (heightened state of alertness but you still have some control).

How many sessions are in Zones of Regulation? ›

The learning activities of zones of regulation are divided into 18 lessons.

Is zone of Regulation A CBT? ›

The Zones of Regulation are embedded in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Mental health therapists can help children make connections with their thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Children can learn to understand how their behaviors influence thoughts and feelings to gain emotional control.

What is yellow zone behavior? ›

The Yellow Zone is also used to describe a heightened state of alertness and elevated emotions, however one has more control when they are in the Yellow Zone. A person may be experiencing stress, frustration, anxiety, excitement, silliness, the wiggles, or nervousness when in the Yellow Zone.

What is Red Zone behavior? ›

The Red Zone is used to describe extremely heightened states of alertness and intense emotions. A person may be elated or experiencing anger, rage, explosive behavior, devastation, or terror when in the Red Zone. A person is described as “out of control” if in the Red Zone.

What are the colors of the Zones of Regulation? ›

The tool “Zones of Regulation” involves four phases of alertness and emotion- Blue,Green, Yellow, and Red. Most teachers who use this tool have a poster for each color in their classroom, with a small picture and label for different emotions that students can use to identify how they feel.

What does self-regulation look like? ›

Self-regulation involves taking a pause between a feeling and an action—taking the time to think things through, make a plan, wait patiently. Children often struggle with these behaviors, and adults may as well.

What does the term self-regulation mean? ›

a : control or supervision from within instead of by an external authority the online marketing industry's self-regulation of consumer privacy protections also : a rule imposed in self-regulation Banks were left to largely manage themselves, and establish industry-wide self-regulations … —

How do you make a zone of Regulation fun? ›

Here are 18 engaging Zones of Regulation activities to support the emotional growth of your students.
  1. Identify feelings by giving them a color. ...
  2. Play a round of Monster Feelings Match-Up. ...
  3. Go on an emotions scavenger hunt. ...
  4. Make cootie catchers. ...
  5. Play the Emotions Sorting Game. ...
  6. Make a calm-down sandwich. ...
  7. Play Behavior Bingo.
25 Aug 2022

How do you teach self-regulation in kindergarten? ›

7 ways to teach your child self-regulation
  1. Be a role model. ...
  2. Teach your children to distract themselves. ...
  3. Promote big goals. ...
  4. Teach breathing meditation. ...
  5. Read books with examples of self-regulation. ...
  6. Play outdoor games, board games, and music. ...
  7. Avoid (or at least limit) temptations.
29 Jul 2022

What is the Green Zone for kids? ›

The green zone is used to describe when you're in a calm state of alertness. Being in the green zone means you are calm, focused, happy, or ready to learn. This is predominantly the state you want your child to be in. It's also the state most needed in the classroom in order to learn.

What are Regulation tools? ›

Regulatory Tools. Regulatory tools are explicit state interventions in policy, plan, project or programme (PPPP) processes, in pursuit of specific societal outcomes not achievable through normal market-based or incentive mechanisms.

What is the Zones of Regulation for parents? ›

What is this? The Zones of Regulation is a complete social-emotional learning curriculum, created to teach children self-regulation and emotional control. It's often taught in school or therapy settings but parents can use and teach The Zones of Regulation at home, too.

What zone is embarrassed? ›

You are in the YELLOW Zone. You may be feeling silly, frustrated, overwhelmed, excited, embarrassed, or confused.

What zone of Regulation is jealous? ›

The same emotion can be categorised into different zones; eg. Disappointment in Blue or Yellow & Jealous can be Yellow or Red. The Zone depends on the intensity of the emotions. Sad can be blue, but really really upset is red.

What zone is disappointed? ›

When they're generally feeling “fine”, they're in the green zone. When feelings start to stir - they're a little disappointed, frustrated, or apprehensive - they're moving toward the yellow zone. They may be able to just distract themselves with an activity or do some calming self-talk to get back in the green zone.

What zone is surprised? ›

The Yellow Zone describes when you start to lose control such as when you are frustrated, overwhelmed, silly, wiggly, excited, worried, anxious, or surprised. It is a good idea to use caution when you are in the Yellow Zone.

How does your body feel in the Blue Zone? ›

Some ways to identify the blue zone: Tears in your eyes, yawning, slow/somber voice, body movements/thoughts are slower. According to "How Do Emotions Work?" it is easy to stay in blue zone once you are there. The brain automatically starts thinking of other sad memories once the emotion of sad is already being felt.

What do you mean by green zone? ›

The definition of a Green Zone varies from community to community, but there is a common concept: a Green Zone designation provides a local framework to protect the environmental and economic health of a community heavily affected by local pollution.

How long is a Zones of Regulation lesson? ›

12 Week Zones Lesson Plan

This excel file is a 12 week outline for a Zones of Regulation group. There is a weekly question/theme, talking points, activities and a tools practice opportunity. The group is structured to run for approximately 1 hour.

What is Zone Regulation training? ›

The Zones of Regulation is a range of activities to help your child develop skills in the area of self-regulation. Self-regulation can go by many names, such as self-control, self-management and impulse control. It is defined as the best state of alertness of both the body and emotions for the specific situation.

How does your engine run training? ›

The Alert Program was developed by occupational therapists, Sherry Shellenberger and Mary Sue Williams, to teach children self-regulation skills. It begins by building awareness of and vocabulary to describe levels of alertness using a car engine analogy.

Does CBT help with emotion regulation? ›

Emotion regulation treatment typically is comprised of four sets of CBT interventions. Sometimes people only need one or two of them, and other times people need all four. Mindfulness is a core component of CBT for emotion regulation. It teaches people to identify their emotions before they get too intense to control.

What is emotion regulation difficulties? ›

Difficulty in Emotion Regulation Scale (DERS)

The subscales of this scale include the lack of acceptance of emotional responses, difficulty in performing purposeful behavior, difficulty controlling impulse, lack of emotional awareness, limited access to emotion regulation strategies, and lack of clarity of emotion.

How is emotional regulation treated? ›

Treatments for Emotional Dysregulation

Treatment for emotional dysregulation may include one or more of the following: Counseling. Typically this will include cognitive-behavioral therapy that combines strategies like mindfulness, acceptance, and emotional regulation. Antidepressant medications.

What is the red zone in a hospital? ›

Red zones care for our highest risk patients and patients entering these areas will be accompanied by staff wearing full PPE. Green zones are medium to low risk areas and blue zones are clean zones.

What is red Zone and Blue Zone? ›

THE RED ZONE AND BLUE ZONE

Are you in the Red Zone (fight-flight-freeze, frantic-fearful-frustrated state, which is?), or are they in the Blue Zone (a mindset where they experience: flow-flourish, peace-possibility, calm-connect, create-confident).

Is Zones of Regulation an intervention? ›

A zones of regulation intervention is a visual system used to control emotion-driven behaviours by managing overwhelming emotions. A zones of regulation intervention can be useful for many individuals, including those who experience anger and violence or have an autistic spectrum condition (ASC).

How do I get my kid out of the red zone? ›

Have a Calm Down Spot. Create a calming space for your child to go to when she feels upset, angry or frustrated. This could include pillows, blankets, or other soft, calming toys. Explain to your child that this is a place for taking breaks to calm down, and keep it positive.

What is the meaning of yellow zone land? ›

Land identified under the yellow zone is meant for residential construction, typically plotted developments. Small businesses like grocery stores, milk booths, and others may be established in the yellow zone.

How do I get out of the red zone? ›

Temperature—Cooling the face activates the parasympathetic nervous system to stimulate a “diving response” that slows the heart rate and can change emotion quickly. Splashing cold water on the face, taking a walk in the cold, or even pressing a frozen orange to the face can help.

What are the 4 awareness zones? ›

The colors blue, green, yellow, and red represent four zones that students can identify with.
  • Blue zone. Sad, sick, tired, bored. “Down” emotions.
  • Green zone. Neutral emotions, organized states. Calm, focused, happy, OK.
  • Yellow zone. Intensified emotions with cognitive control. ...
  • Red zone. Intense emotions that overwhelm.
26 Oct 2016

What are the four Zones of Regulation? ›

The tool “Zones of Regulation” involves four phases of alertness and emotion- Blue,Green, Yellow, and Red. Most teachers who use this tool have a poster for each color in their classroom, with a small picture and label for different emotions that students can use to identify how they feel.

What is the Zones of Regulation for parents? ›

What is this? The Zones of Regulation is a complete social-emotional learning curriculum, created to teach children self-regulation and emotional control. It's often taught in school or therapy settings but parents can use and teach The Zones of Regulation at home, too.

Is Zones of Regulation an intervention? ›

A zones of regulation intervention is a visual system used to control emotion-driven behaviours by managing overwhelming emotions. A zones of regulation intervention can be useful for many individuals, including those who experience anger and violence or have an autistic spectrum condition (ASC).

How do you make a zone of Regulation fun? ›

Here are 18 engaging Zones of Regulation activities to support the emotional growth of your students.
  1. Identify feelings by giving them a color. ...
  2. Play a round of Monster Feelings Match-Up. ...
  3. Go on an emotions scavenger hunt. ...
  4. Make cootie catchers. ...
  5. Play the Emotions Sorting Game. ...
  6. Make a calm-down sandwich. ...
  7. Play Behavior Bingo.
25 Aug 2022

What zone is scared in? ›

Yellow Zone = Stress, scared, frustration, anxiety, excitement, silliness, wiggly, nervous, worried. In this zone, you need to slow down.

What zone is embarrassed in? ›

You are in the YELLOW Zone. You may be feeling silly, frustrated, overwhelmed, excited, embarrassed, or confused.

What zone is excited? ›

Yellow Zone: more intense emotions and states but able to maintain control, worried, frustrated, silly, excited, scared or overwhelmed (heightened state of alertness but you still have some control).

What is the green Zone for kids? ›

The green zone is used to describe when you're in a calm state of alertness. Being in the green zone means you are calm, focused, happy, or ready to learn. This is predominantly the state you want your child to be in. It's also the state most needed in the classroom in order to learn.

Is zone of Regulation A CBT? ›

The Zones of Regulation are embedded in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. Mental health therapists can help children make connections with their thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Children can learn to understand how their behaviors influence thoughts and feelings to gain emotional control.

How do you teach self-regulation in kindergarten? ›

7 ways to teach your child self-regulation
  1. Be a role model. ...
  2. Teach your children to distract themselves. ...
  3. Promote big goals. ...
  4. Teach breathing meditation. ...
  5. Read books with examples of self-regulation. ...
  6. Play outdoor games, board games, and music. ...
  7. Avoid (or at least limit) temptations.
29 Jul 2022

What is yellow zone behavior? ›

The Yellow Zone is also used to describe a heightened state of alertness and elevated emotions, however one has more control when they are in the Yellow Zone. A person may be experiencing stress, frustration, anxiety, excitement, silliness, the wiggles, or nervousness when in the Yellow Zone.

How do you teach self-regulation in primary school? ›

6 ways to help primary pupils learn self-regulation
  1. Create a code for learning. ...
  2. Help them understand each another's actions. ...
  3. Provide calm down activities. ...
  4. Talk about feelings. ...
  5. Include yoga into the daily schedule. ...
  6. Talk about self-regulation.
26 Jul 2021

What are regulation tools? ›

Regulatory Tools. Regulatory tools are explicit state interventions in policy, plan, project or programme (PPPP) processes, in pursuit of specific societal outcomes not achievable through normal market-based or incentive mechanisms.

What does self-regulation look like? ›

Self-regulation involves taking a pause between a feeling and an action—taking the time to think things through, make a plan, wait patiently. Children often struggle with these behaviors, and adults may as well.

Videos

1. Kids Feelings and Emotions SONG Animation with A Little SPOT
(Diane)
2. Teaching children how to manage emotions
(Marie Leiner)
3. Zones of Regulation Lesson 2
(The Viral OTs)
4. 14 Ways to Have Good Manners 👭👬 | Kids Preschool Zone
(Kids Preschool Zone)
5. Zones Of Regulation With Mr. Biel (Kindergarten - 4th grade) Draw, Write, Discuss, make a plan
(Mathias Weinmann)
6. Emotional Regulation (for Kids) | Occupational Therapy
(Adam the OT)
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