The aims of this study were to study reciprocal interactions between emotion regulation skills, association of these skills with children’s school functioning and how these underlying skills develop in children in the context of adversity. 48 children (mean age = 5 years 8.2 months) were divided into an adversity risk group and a low-risk group. Emotional regulation was assessed via an emotion identification task, a Stroop task and near-infrared spectroscopy. School functioning was documented using the Social Skills Improvement System with parents and teachers. During the Stroop task, there was a difference in the activation of the right Brodmann area 8 in both groups. During the emotion regulation tasks, BA8L and BA9R showed activation and an association with school functioning. These results contribute to the accuracy of cerebral mapping associated with emotion regulation and support its potential contribution in preventive programs aimed at the functioning of children at risk of school difficulties.