In the Land of Maple (our mixed-age preschool classroom), we try to understand our feelings and find ways to express them. One tool we use is the mood meter from the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. The mood meter is a graph that measures energy levels and pleasantness. The meter uses different colors to represent the emotions: yellow is high energy and very pleasant, red is high energy and very unpleasant, green is low energy and pleasant, and blue is low energy and unpleasant. We recently introduced the Mood meter at assembly and had discussions about what each color meant and that you can move on the mood meter throughout the day.
The mood meter is used during the day in Maple in a variety of ways:
- Sign In: The children sign in daily and have an opportunity to express how they are feeling at that time. The children can color in a square on the sign-in paper or trace their name using the color of how they are feeling.
- When reading books, we discuss how the characters are feelings on each page.
- We use the language when helping the children solve conflicts with each other or when communicating needs with teachers in the classroom.
We want these tools and the skills they help build to help your child communicate their emotions at school and grow their emotional intelligence. We are hopeful that this will be a useful tool at home as well and can initiate conversations surrounding emotionality.
Moving forward, we will be creating emotion books based upon the 4 main emotions of happy, angry, content, and sad.