Having a Calm Box for children to use when they are feeling ‘big feelings’ can be a really effective strategy for self regulation. Here are some ideas on how to create one for / with your child.
Use an empty box or basket. Your child can be really involved in creating this to really personalise it and make it their own. Paint it, use stickers, print out pictures to stick on, wrap it in gift paper. Go with your child’s ideas and fill the box with items your child enjoys. Boxes will differ depending on the age and stage of a child…the box and contents can be changed when appropriate to maintain interest. Here are some ideas…
* Paper /journal and pencils/ pens
* Squeezy toy or stress ball
* Blue tac / putty or play doh.
* small puzzle or jigsaw related to an interest of theirs
* glitter jar
* headphones / ear protectors or ear muffs
* scented cloth or scratch and sniff stickers
* cuddly toy or cushion – to cuddle or stroke
* colouring in book
* access to music
* eye mask
* favourite toy
If possible, store the box in a place that where your child feels safe, like a den, cosy corner or even beside a blanket or their bed. Encourage and help your child choose an item from their box to help restore calm when feeling upset, anxious or frustrated.