Using positive affirmations in the classroom with your students is a great way to start the new year. Even in special education settings, this can be a powerful tool with some slight modifications. With consistency, making affirmations a part of your morning routine can help build self-esteem and self-awareness in students even with significant challenges. And, to help you out, I have 52 positive affirmations for the classroom you can download for free at the end of this post.
Setting a consistent time
The first step to successfully using affirmations in the classroom is to find a set time you can implement it every day. This is especially true for students with special needs. Change is difficult and can cause anxiety. Not what we are looking for when using affirmations. Having a predictable routine can be reassuring and calming to students. Although it is a great way to start the day, you do not have to implement affirmations first thing in the morning. The most important thing is to find a consistent time of day that works with your schedule.
Because I have included 52 positive affirmations, my thought is that you would focus on one affirmation per week. The repetition is needed to make the affirmation part of your internal dialogue. This is typical of most people who practice daily affirmations. They often focus on one affirmation for a week or even longer.
Setting clear expectations
Reciting or reflecting on positive affirmations in the classroom is likely a very new concept for you and your students. How this works and what it will look like will vary depending on the make up of your class. Here are some questions to ask yourself:
- How long will the block of time be?
- Will students be quiet or can they talk to themselves?
- Would it help to have quiet music playing?
- Where will students be? Do they need to stay at their desk, or can they find a comfortable spot?
- Will they be allowed to interact with other students?
- How will they let you know they need a break, or do not feel like participating that day?
- Will the affirmations be reviewed as a class or individually?
- Will communication devices be required?
- What happens immediately after this block of time?
Choosing the best format
The download I have below that contains 52 positive affirmations to use in the classroom comes in 2 formats. One format has simple sentences. The other format has the same sentence as well as a black and white picture to illustrate the meaning of the positive affirmation. If you have a mix of abilities, you may need to use both formats.
Creating the positive affirmation for the classroom
Now that you know the format you are going to use, it is powerful to allow students to “make the affirmation their own.” Here are some ways students can add their own flair:
- Use highlighters to emphasize certain words.
- Color in the picture if using the visual affirmation.
- Color in the background.
- Add stickers.
- Add glitter (if you are brave enough)
- Use watercolors to brighten it up.
- Mount it on a colorful piece of paper.
Once students have spiced up their affirmation, you will want to laminate it. I have found packing tape actually works really well for small things like this. It also helps if you mount it on an index card or cardstock. Remember, students will be using these positive affirmations every day in the classroom.
Downloading your positive affirmations for the classroom
Click the button below to download all 52 affirmations in both formats. I hope you will find these bring some unexpected and positive effects to your students and your classroom in 2021.
If you would like to get a free writing prompt and read more about positive affirmations for students, visit my blog post: Positive Affirmations for students: A powerful tool for 2021