Student Contributor: E. Kruse
Cool down cubes are a simple tool made from reusable ice cubes to help students who become emotional and need help calming back down. Each cube has a different “safe cool down strategy” that the child can complete to aid in bringing their emotions back into control.
For this tool, you will take reusable ice cubes and write a “safe” cool down strategy on each. Examples include, but are not limited to: “3 deep breaths”, “draw”, “talk to a friend” and “count clouds”. Put all of the cubes in a container and let your students know where it is located in the classroom. When a student starts getting angry, upset, or sad, you can ask them to take a cool down cube. They can do what their cube says for 5 minutes and if after that time they still do not have control of their emotions, they can choose to either take another cube or different consequence. These cubes are a good tool because it will minimize class distractions if used properly and the student is able to take some time to cool down without the aid of a teacher.
I placed this tool in the Corrective phase because it is a tool to help with correcting behavior. It could also fit into the Preventative phase if the student recognizes that a strong emotion is coming on and they take a cube to help with their behavior before it starts. Also, this tool is more Collaborative because while the student is the one in control of their behavior, the teacher is initially the one to ask them to take a cool down cube and the teacher is the one who decides how much time a student is allowed to try and calm down before a larger consequence is brought into play. So this tool is a joint effort between student and teacher.
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Tool Source: I found this idea on Pinterest.