Zones of Regulation



What is Zones of Regulation?
Zones of Regulation is a framework that has been developed to support children to develop social, emotional and sensory self-regulation. It is a programme developed by an Occupational Therapist who recognised the difficulties that many pupils have with self-regulation.

What is Self-Regulation?
Self-regulation are the processes that allow children to respond appropriately to their environment (Bronson, 2000), reach goals and behave in a socially appropriate way. It involves different domains and means that one domain impacts on another. The four domains include: thoughts, feelings, behaviour and cognition.

Emotional Intelligence
Emotional well-being involves being able to:
• Recognise your own emotional state
• Express your emotions clearly
• Cope with emotions without hurting yourself or anyone else
By teaching our children to become emotionally intelligent we aim to help them:
• Know how to manage their feelings in order to communicate in a positive, appropriate and supportive way
• Become good listeners
• Be sensitive to other people’s points of view
• Learn to understand and cope effectively with other people’s feelings.
(Goleman, 1997)

Zones of Regulation Framework
The zones of regulation framework is broken down into the following key areas:
• Way to identify and communicate feelings / Zones in a non-judgemental way
• Understand the different feelings, sensory needs and thinking patterns that result in a student shifting from one Zone to the next
• Learn tools to stay in or move between different Zones
• Develop an individualised toolbox
• Recognise triggers and when to use tools
• Recognise others emotions and the impact of one’s behaviour on others

The Four Zones
Zones of Regulation consists of four zones. These zones represent our feelings and states of being. The children are taught that ALL zones are normal and that we will all experience these different feelings and zones at points during the day/week. It is important for children to understand why we sometimes are in the different zones, what our triggers are and what we can do to help us get back to the expected zone at the expected time.