McCarthy Memo - SEL focus

Social Emotional Learning to Support Families and Students


Hi Fabulous McCarthy families!!!

We miss all of you and hope that you and your families are well. As we adapt to this extended time away from school we wanted to continue to be in touch (albeit virtually), and share a few resources with you, specifically around social and emotional learning.

In this issue we are sharing some video links for calming strategies and family fitness activities. Taking care of ourselves, both physically and emotionally is so important, especially now when we are out of our regular routines. We are also sharing some information about the Zones of Regulation, one component of the SEL curriculum that Framingham is using. I have also included the character trait of the month (another aspect of the SEL curriculum), with links to video read alouds of the books on Confidence.

As we adapt to our current reality we wanted to share some resources for parents on dealing with this unprecedented situation. There is an article about supporting children during school closures, and another article about how to talk to children about COVID-19.

We also want to nurture creativity, and have included some coloring sheets (for use online or to print out), and a video lesson on drawing by a professional cartoonist!

Please feel free to reach out if you have any questions.

Be well!


Contact Jean Nolan

Videos with calming strategies and exercise ideas for families

Mindfulness Strategies for Adults and Student Wellness

Panorama is offering twice daily mindfulness strategies

The Zones of Regulation

The Zones of Regulation is one component of the SEL curriculum used at McCarthy, and throughout the district.

What Zone are you in?

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THE FOUR ZONES: Our feelings & states determine our zones

The Red Zone is used to describe extremely heightened states of alertness and intense emotions. A person may be elated or experiencing anger, rage, devastation, or terror when in the Red Zone.

The Yellow Zone is also used to describe a heightened state of alertness and elevated emotions, however one has more control when they are in the Yellow Zone. A person may be experiencing stress, frustration, anxiety, excitement, silliness, the wiggles, or nervousness when in the Yellow Zone.

The Green Zone is used to describe a calm state of alertness. A person may be described as happy, focused, content, or ready to learn when in the Green Zone. This is the zone where optimal learning occurs.

The Blue Zone is used to describe low states of alertness and down feelings such as when one feels sad, tired, sick, or bored.

The Zones can be compared to traffic signs. When given a green light or in the Green Zone, one is “good to go”. A yellow sign means be aware or take caution, which applies to the Yellow Zone. A red light or stop sign means stop, and when one is the Red Zone this often is the case. The Blue Zone can be compared to the rest area signs where one goes to rest or re-energize. All of the zones are natural to experience, but the framework focuses on teaching students how to recognize and manage their Zone based on the environment and its demands and the people around them.

Character Trait of the Month for March - CONFIDENCE

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Links to read alouds of the books on Confidence

Ish by Peter Reynolds

Stand Tall Molly Lou Melon by Patty Lovell

Jabari Jumps by Gaia Cornwall

After the Fall (how Humpty Dumpty got Back up Again) by Dan Santat

The Dot (El Punto) by Peter Reynolds (en espanol)

I'm Gonna Like Me (Me Gusto) by Jamie Lee Curtis (en espanol)

Resources to support Children's Social Emotional and Mental Health

The article below has some ideas for families on how to support their children and set up for success while everyone is home together during this time.

the COVID-19 Pandemic

The National Association of School Psychologists has put together a resource for parents about talking to your children about COVID-19.


Coloring has the ability to relax the fear center of your brain, the amygdala. It induces the same state as meditating by reducing the thoughts of a restless mind. This generates mindfulness and quietness, which allows your mind to get some rest after a long day at work


According to the Sanskrit language, the word 'mandala' means 'circle' or 'center'. These circles are spiritual symbols symbolizing the universe in Buddhism and Hinduism. ... Coloring mandalas can promote relaxation, calms the nervous system, invokes positive energies, and balances body energies
Mandala sheet- color online

A peaceful and fun activity.

Learn how to draw from a professional cartoonist

Joe Wos is a professional cartoonist with over 30 years of experience. Learn the basics of shape, line, form, and structure in a fun, active environment. Follow step-by-step instructions as you learn to draw simple characters, facial expressions, and more on the HowtoToon YouTube channel. Enjoy!!