Zones of Regulation at NMPS

North Melbourne Primary School is excited to introduce the Zones of Regulation as a valuable addition to our school’s Wellbeing program. This internationally recognized intervention is designed to assist children in managing challenging emotions, also known as ‘self-regulation.’ The concept of self-regulation encompasses various terms such as ‘self-control,’ ‘impulse management,’ and ‘self-management.’ It refers to achieving the ideal level of alertness suitable for different situations. For instance, a child might require a higher state of alertness during a sports game compared to studying in a library.

At times, both children and adults struggle with handling intense emotions like worry, anger, restlessness, fear, or fatigue, hindering their ability to effectively navigate their day. Children experiencing these emotions might find it challenging to concentrate and learn at school. The Zones of Regulation aims to equip children with strategies to manage these feelings, enabling them to regain a sense of calmness and readiness to learn. These strategies are commonly referred to as ‘self-regulation.’

Our goal is to empower all students with effective coping and regulation techniques, aiding them in handling anxiety and stress. Often, children may feel overwhelmed when encountering complex learning tasks or challenges. By providing them with tools to manage these emotions, they can improve their ability to tackle academic challenges and develop stronger resilience, reducing the tendency to give up easily when faced with difficulties. We aspire to assist children in mastering these skills so they can thrive in various aspects of their educational journey.

sing the Zones of Regulation, we aim to help students:

  • Acknowledge and manage their current Zone, learning techniques to either maintain or shift to another Zone as needed.
  • Expand their emotional language to articulate their feelings effectively.
  • Identify the emotional state of others in various Zones, fostering empathy and understanding.
  • Gain an understanding of factors that could trigger transitions between different Zones.
  • Comprehend the impact of emotions, sensory inputs (like sleep deprivation or hunger), and surroundings on their Zone.
  • Cultivate problem-solving abilities and resilience.
  • Compile a set of calming and alerting strategies tailored to their needs, forming their own personalised ‘toolkit.’

What are each of the zones?
Blue Zone: low state of alertness and feeling down, feeling sad, tired, sick, hurt, lonely, or bored. Our energy is low and our body is moving slowly when we are in the Blue Zone.

Green Zone: Tranquil state of awareness; ideal for learning; feels content, serene, focused, and emotionally stable.

Yellow Zone: Increased alertness; heightened emotions with some level of control; experiences frustration, worry, restlessness, excitement, and partial loss of control.

Red Zone: Intensified alertness and overwhelming emotions; not conducive for learning; feels furious, terrified, agitated (yelling/hitting), or overly ecstatic.

Students are taught that everyone experiences all of the Zones. The Red and Yellow zones are not ‘bad’ or ‘naughty’ Zones. All of the Zones are experienced at one time or another. The aim is to ensure students can recognise what zones they are in and provide them with strategies to move from one zone to the next, when necessary.