St Patrick's Catholic Primary Academy

Our Zones of Regulation

At St Patrick's we use the Zones of Regulation to help all children with their own self regulation and emotional wellbeing.

The zones are split up into four colours, which help the children decide which emotions they are currently feeling and which coloured zone they are therefore in at the present moment. The aim is for the children to recognise that everybody moves from zone to zone because of the emotions we feel throughout the day. We teach children that no zone is a negative zone to be in, however, we will always aim to use strategies to move ourselves back to the Green Zone as soon as possible.

Once the children have recognised their feelings, they are then given 'tools' to move themselves back into the Green Zone, which is the zone of complete control and the zone that we aim to be in for the majority of the time. Each of the four coloured zones are explained below.


Blue Zone

If a child is in the Blue Zone they may feel:

  • sad
  • sick
  • tired
  • bored
  • slow moving 

Yellow Zone

If a child is in the Yellow Zone they may feel:

  • frustrated
  • worried
  • have a feeling of silliness/ feeling giddy
  • excited
  • loss of some control 

Red Zone

If a child is in the Red Zone they may feel:

  • mad
  • terrified
  • elated
  • total fear
  • loss of all control 

Green Zone

If a child is in the Green Zone, they may feel:

  • happy
  • calm
  • feeling okay
  • focussed
  • ready to learn

This is the zone that we aim to ensure all children move back to when they have been in a different zone.

Useful strategies and resources

The Zones of Regulation scheme has lots of useful strategies and tools to help children move back into the Green Zone and children are given the opportunity to explore which strategy or tool works best for them. Below are some resources and tools that we are currently using in school - each line is a link so please click for the information.


Breathing techniques

The six sides of breathing

Lazy 8 breathing technique


Thinking techniques to challenge negative thoughts

Inner critic and inner coach

Listening to your inner coach

What is the size of the problem?

Size of the problem worksheet


Tracking your emotions

Tracking your thoughts throughout the day

Tracking your emotions throughout the day example


Recognising my own zones

Me and my zones

Which zone would I be in?


Other calming activities

  • drawing
  • painting
  • read a book
  • listen to music
  • any other distraction techniques that move your mind away from negative thoughts
  • Drink water and have regular water breaks
  • Go for walks and explore nature
  • wall pushes