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Count To 10

Count To 10

Why should I do it:

  • Provides students with a quick immediate coping strategy
  • Easy to do
  • Students can initiate and carry the technique out independently
  • Fast to teach and do
  • Effective
  • Can be shortened or lengthened to meet individual student needs
  • Good for all age ranges
  • Can be used anywhere at any time

When should I do it:

  • When a student is upset, emotional, angry, etc
  • When a student is overwhelmed
  • Before or after stressful events and times
  • When students appear distressed, stressed, anxious, or nervous
  • Before tests, speeches, group work, etc

How do I do it:

  • You can teach students this technique individually or as a class
  • Tell students to take 10 deep slow breaths, counting each one until they reach 10
  • Have students identify when they feel they would need to use the technique, explaining what it means to be stressed, anxious, upset, etc and when and what may cause these feelings
  • Have students identify what physical effects these feelings and experiences may have, which will help students know when to count to 10, for example, shaking, crying, jittery, etc

Resources & Support for technique:
(Items with footnotes link to external websites)


  1. Sorgen, C. Anger Management: Counting to 10 and Beyond. [].
  2. Elkind+Sweet Communications, Inc. Teaching Guide: Controlling Anger for grades K-5. [].
  3. Nelson, R. (2010). List of Ways to Help Kids Handle Anger. [].
  4. National Crime Prevention Council. Anger Management: Advice for teens on controlling anger. [].