The Zones of Regulation®: Exploring Emotions is an application designed to foster self-regulation skills in fun and exciting ways while simulating everyday situations students can relate to.
Exploring Emotions is based off of the widely adopted framework, The Zones of Regulation, by Leah Kuypers (www.zonesofregulation.com). The framework was published as a curriculum (2011, Social Thinking Publishing, www.socialthinking.com) as well as an original app, both titled The Zones of Regulation. The Zones of Regulation teaches four concrete colored “zones” to categorize all the feelings, sensory states and emotions we experience, helping students develop awareness of how they are feeling and by providing a simple language and visual structure to communicate their feelings to others. In addition, students learn about tools and how they can be used to manage each of their zones. The app helps students gain skills in consciously regulating their behaviors to the social and environmental demands.
Exploring Emotions offers a new medium to address self-regulation needs and reinforce The Zones framework. There are several features in the app that create a comprehensive learning experience:
• Audio voiceover enriches the experience for students by providing social interaction between characters and instructional teachings throughout the app.
• Data tracking allows students to apply what they are learning in the app to their own life by self-monitoring and reflecting on their feelings (Zones) and how they were managed during events that occurred over the course of their day. These graphs can be saved, revisited and edited, and also emailed to an email address.
• Easy navigation throughout the app allows students to return to any point in the app to replay and consider different outcomes.
• Integration of an expansive toolbox that is fully customizable by students. Students learn about and categorize dozens of tools to help them manage their zones. They are also able to adjust the content of their toolbox.
• Incorporation of mini games provide real-time the opportunity for students to reflect on the outcome of games and how this triggers emotions.
• Multiple environments including a classroom, a cafeteria, and a park that offer different scenarios, events and activities to participate in. Students easily relate to the various situations presented throughout the app, helping them to make connections between learning in the app to real life.
• Reinforcing activities are infused throughout the app. For example, students can unlock a mini game and customize their avatar by coloring their hair and buying custom outfits.
• References to The Zones of Regulation curriculum are embedded throughout the app to assist adults who support a student in locating additional educational resources to strengthen learning.
Exploring Emotions is designed to be used with Pre-K, elementary students, secondary students, as well as is applicable to adults that struggle with emotional control. To enhance learning, it is recommended that an adult closely monitor the student's progression through the App, asking probing questions and facilitating discussions about how the App's content can be generalized to the student's real life. Exploring Emotions is a resource for parents to teach and encourage self-control and emotional management in the home through the Zones framework. It is an exciting resource for therapists and teachers looking to address social emotional learning (SEL) through a medium that is motivating for students to engage in.
The App provides a fun and engaging experience for students while learning and gaining valuable knowledge to assist in developing real-life skills in self-regulation and emotional control.
The Zones of Regulation : Exploring Emotions is available now for iPad®, iPhone®, iPod touch®, Mac® and Android™.