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- Fragrance: Inhaling either peppermint or citrus scents help wake my brain up. I keep essential oils in my classroom and take a sniff as needed. Portable, non-toxic, and I can do it as often as I would like.
- Music: Give me a song I can sing along to and I perk right up! I can always put on headphones if I don't want to bother anyone else. Or if I'm in the classroom at the time, the kids dance along with me!
- Water: I've noticed that when I get dehydrated, my brain slows down. It is hard for me to drink enough water in the classroom (after all, I can't always run to the bathroom when I need to), so I try to make sure I drink extra glasses when I first get up and at lunch time.
- Movement: Maria Montessori observed that the mind follows the hand. In order to be able to control our minds, we have to be able to control our bodies. To get my students focused, I give them a physical task such as washing dishes, scrubbing tables, or sewing. The same thing works for adults: find an activity that involves your hands and your mind will calm down and come into focus.
- Take a break: A change is as good as a rest! A few minutes walking around after sitting in front of a computer will help you stay focused on the task at hand. I take a few minutes for some deep breathing before my students come in. It allows me to focus my mind on what I want to get done during the day before the hustle and bustle begins.