I have another tool to share from the “rubber boots and elf shoes” blog! This one is called “The Hugging Tree” and it relates to letting go of worries as well. There is a tree with lots of branches that you give to the students and have them put as many worries they can think of (either in drawings or words) on the branches. They will keep the tree at home and hug it before they go to bed – so that when they let go of the tree, they are letting of the worries that surround it. Young children need different visualizing activities for concepts that they might not fully understand yet, like shrugging off worries. For class tomorrow, there was an article that involved breaking down the steps of how to resolve conflicts. It is important for teachers to go through these types of processes in a step-by-step manner with their students during morning meetings or if an event arises, because children haven’t had much experience figuring out how to handle stress, worries, or conflicts on their own yet.I look forward to trying some of these activities out on the Kindergarteners – I hope my new CT in the spring will allow morning meetings to be incorporated into her schedule. I decided to try out Kindergarten next term because I have observed/taught in grades 1, 2, 4, and 5 (and figured grade 3 was similar to second and fourth). Schools will have many openings in Kindergarten teaching positions due to a new all-day law, and I thought I’d try the really young ones and keep my options strong 🙂 Kinders really benefit from activities like the one above because they are still learning basic social skills.