One of the most successful strategies used for my study skills class was creating the chill corner. That corner had the ambiance of a living room, instead of a sterile classroom. It was sectioned off on two sides by books shelves about four feet high so I could monitor the students, with an open space to enter and a tall window on the one side. An old oak coffee table pushed towards the wall was provided with pillows picked up from the Salvation Army to sit on the floor. A big faux leather chair and a rocking chair flanked the table. With some plants, sunshine, and crystals suspended in the window to make rainbows, it was complete.
The coffee table was about forty inches square, and the kids sat on the pillows and spread out their papers to collaborate. The faux leather chair allowed for casual reading positions with curled up legs, sideways or even upside down. Sitting with someone else wasn’t allowed. The pillows tucked nicely under the table when not in use. Kids loved sitting on the floor to work. As well as books, I included plastics shapes used to design quilts, puzzles, and color pencils. It was considered a privilege to use the chill corner, and for stressed or anxious kids, it was a welcome, safe harbor. Using this space often became the reward for finishing a challenging assignment. The kids thought it was awesome to chill.
“Be Yourself: Nobody can do that Better!’