Almost three years ago, I read Stuart Shanker’s Calm, Alert, and Learning. This was part of a Book Club for our Board, and when I decided to join the Book Club, I did so skeptically. I thought that self-regulation was just the latest fad, and that instead of speaking about it, we should just teach children “how to behave.” I was teaching Grade 5 at the time though, and I wanted to move to Full-Day Kindergarten the next year, so I thought that this Book Club would be a good professional choice for me: many Full-Day Kindergarten educators were part of the club and actively learning more about self-regulation. Little did I know that Dr. Shanker’s book would be one of the most influential books that I would ever read. This book changed my understanding of self-regulation, of students and behaviour, and of classroom design, while also making me look critically at my teaching practices. Three years ago, I started to write many blog posts after reading Calm, Alert, and Learning, and now, three years later, I’m re-exploring them as part of my final project for the fourth Foundations Course through The MEHRIT Centre.
My learning through these courses is giving me a new perspective, and I’ve decided to rewrite some of my older blog posts using my updated self-regulation lens. I’m also writing new blog posts about self-regulation and classroom practices and compiling all of them here. I hope that they will spark discussions about self-regulation, classroom design, teaching practices, and what it really means to be calm, alert, and ready to learn.