Calming Jars

Take a moment to think about the last time you put your child diagnosed with ADHD, Oppositional Defiant Disorder or Conduct Disorder in time out. Ask yourself the following questions:

Did my child willing go to time out without screaming or talking back?

How long did my child stay in their room, seated in one place, without destroying the room or falling asleep?

How long did the naughty step work?

How long did it take for my child to walk away from the corner?

If you have no issues or concerns with time out and was able to provide a positive answer to all the above questions, congratulations on your parenting skills! Now for the rest of you having some trouble surrounding time out lets move forward.

Sending a child to time-out can cause increased defiant behaviors, emotional breakdowns or an aggressive tantrums. Finding alternative ways to refocus the behaviors and frustration becomes very important. Utilizing a tool called the “Calming Jar” can become an effective method to calming down and control defiant and emotional behaviors. The jar is mixed with water and glitter. The child shakes the jar and they are challenged with watching the glitter as it settles. This will allow the child to transition into a calming state.

The process of using the calming jar starts when the jar is made. I recommend the calming jar be created with the child, in order for them to take ownership of the jar. This will also allow an opportunity for you as the parent to fully explain the purpose of the calming jar. The jar can have multiple uses that will best benefit your child. For example you can utilize the jar as a time during play or reading time.

Below are instructions on how to create your calming jar.

Materials Needed:

Jar or Plastic bottle




Add everything to the jar or bottle. Use warm water and give it a good shake to get the glue mixed in well.