P-SCR-06: Recognizes Rising Tensions

This measure focuses on how consistently the teacher uses logical consequences in an attempt to prevent problem behaviors from occurring or escalating from a rising tension to a problem behavior. To accomplish this, the teacher must first recognize rising tensions in the classroom and then provide children with the logical consequence before the rising tension reaches a boiling point. Consider “rising tension” as an emotion that is escalating or a misbehavior that is about to happen. Rising tension can occur with one child, for example, a child who grows increasingly frustrated at not being able to build a tower. Rising tension can also occur between two or more children, such as when two children both want to play with the same toy. Rising tension can also occur between a teacher and one or more children. For example, a teacher becomes increasingly impatient with a child who keeps talking without raising their hand.

Category: Category 2: Teacher-Child Interactions Subcategory: Support for Children’s Regulation


In this section you will find videos, images, and/or documents that can be used to better understand this measure. These examples can also be used in conversations between mentors, directors, and/or teachers to discuss how the program's current practices compare to these examples.

Video Example

In this video exemplar, the teacher notices conflict between the two children and she verbally reminds the children to use gentle touch while playing with the tunnel. Teachers can support children’s self-regulation by first recognizing rising tensions or conflict and then providing children with a logical consequence of their actions.

Age(s): Toddler
Online Course

In this video, we see teachers recognizing emotions that are escalating or misbehaviors that are about to happen. This video has tips on how to provide logical consequences before the rising tension reaches a boiling point. (Parts of this video have no audio.)

Age(s): Toddler, Preschool, School-age

Practice Opportunities

These resources include tips, strategies, activities, or specific tools related to this measure that programs can put into practice.

How to Support Self-Regulation Difficulties in Children
Implementation Tool

This article will help you understand the connections between self-regulation skills in children, their brain development, and your own responses to children who are having a difficult time self-regulating. The author also provides specific strategies that can be used to prevent and de-escalate rising tensions.

Age(s): Infant, Toddler, Preschool