Published on Nov 11, 2021
12 Most Effective Mindfulness Activities to Teach Your Kids
Today's world is the age of chaos and competition; there is competition in every step of your life. In winning and gaining more, people have forgotten to live their lives and enjoy a bit.
Competitiveness is not only found among adults; it is also seen among kids. Kids are taught to be competitive from the very beginning of their life. And the advancement of the digital era is also affecting kids mentally.
In trying to win everything in life, people, especially kids, forget to be mindful. Mindfulness means being active mentally and being aware of activities that are happening around you.
Involving yourself in mindfulness activities will enable you to be aware of the things you are feeling. Mindfulness helps to improve one’s quality of life. Hence you should not just focus on physical activities for kids but also on mindfulness activities for them.
Benefits of Mindfulness Activities for Kids
Parents should involve their kids in mindfulness activities as it has numerous benefits for kids. Some of the benefits of mindfulness activities for kids are:
- Improves your sleep quality.
- Brings positivity among kids.
- Reduces anxiety and depression.
- Improves problem-solving skills.
- Helps them to express their feelings.
- Improves decision-making skills.
- Boost confidence and self-control among kids.
- Helps with anger management for kids.
Top 12 Mindfulness Activities For Kids
1. Mindful Breathing
Mindful breathing is a popular mindfulness activity that schools and parents encourage kids to do. Mindful breathing exercise works as mediation for kids. If kids are new to breathing activity, ask them to do it for 1-2 minutes first and then increase the time.
You can practice mindful breathing practices either by standing or sitting. Here’s how you can practice mindful breathing with your kids:
- At first, find a place where you can practice breathing exercises with your kid.
- Set a timer for how long you want to practice breathing.
- Ask your kids to close their eyes and place their hands on their belly or chest.
- Now guide your kids to take a deep breath, and ask them to concentrate on their breath.
- You can even ask your kids to count each breath in and breath out.
2. Mindful Eating
Everyone loves eating, so do kids. Sometimes kids overeat when they love some food item so much. If you let your kids watch TV all day with their favorite food, they will not know how much food they have. So, make your kids mindful about what they are eating and in how much proportion they should be eating.
Mindful eating is one of the mindfulness activities for kids that makes them aware of the food they eat and the consequences of overeating. While engaging your kids in mindful eating, you can talk to your kids about food, how it tastes, its flavor, its aroma, and so on.
If you are a teacher, here’s how you can organize mindful eating with your kids in the classroom:
- Provide them with a piece of food; it can be anything, fruits or candies.
- Now ask students to smell the food and describe its smell.
- Next, you can ask them to describe the food based on its appearance, like how it looks, feels, shape and size, and so on.
- After they describe the food, now you can make them have the food and describe how it was.
- Make your kids aware of how the taste changes, how it feels while chewing, how it feels like slowing the food, and so on.
3. Mindfulness Safari
The next mindfulness activity that you can do with your kids is a mindfulness safari. If you have 10-30 minutes with your kids, you can encourage your kids to mindfulness safari activities. This activity will enable kids to know what’s around them, help them to appreciate their surroundings.
When you are taking your kid on a mindfulness safari, here are a few things that you need to keep in mind:
- Please encourage them to walk in quietly and slowly without disturbing the environment.
- Ask your kids to pay attention to the environment and things they see in the environment.
- Instruct your kid to make all their five senses active.
- Let your kids explore the environment.
- You should ask questions regarding the environment, provide information regarding new objects or insects they see.
4. Shark Fin
Shark Fin is one of the best ways to keep kids’ minds and bodies active during day time. You can do this activity quickly within a few 2-3 minutes. You do not need any extra tools or equipment to perform this task; you do not need to go out. This activity is said to be effective when kids’ bodies and minds are fighting against one another.
If you have not tried Shark Fin, here’s the guide that you can follow to perform this activity:
- Make your kid put their hand on their forehead. It would be best to make sure that their palm is facing sideward, not towards their forehead.
- Ask them to close their eyes.
- Now, make your kids slide their hand down towards their nose while you say “shh.”
- Keep doing the activity for a few minutes.
5. Belly Buddies
Belly Buddies is a popular mindfulness activity among many parents and teachers with kids and students. This activity will take you a maximum of 10 minutes, and all you need is small stuffed toys or any light objects.
While performing belly buddies, first of all, arrange soft objects or toys for your kids. After arranging the toys, ask your kids to lay on the ground on their back.
Now you can follow the slow breathing process, breathe in through the nose, and breathe out through the mouth while concentrating on the toy. Or you can follow mindful breathing techniques for the breathing process. You can do this for a few minutes until the breathing turns back to normal.
6. Body Scan
If your kids are bored or do not have any activities, you can perform a body scan. A body scan helps you to relax your body and mind. You can download a meditation guide to make your meditation more effective. This activity will help your kid to focus on their physical and mental well-being.
If you want to start a body scan, first of all, kids need to lie down and close their eyes. And you can ask your kids to pay close attention to their toes and feet for a few seconds. As your kids focus on their feet, you can start to ask questions like:
- How are they feeling?
- How does their body feel?
- Are they feeling relaxed or not?
- Are they feeling pain in any part of the body?
Once you have completed the question for one part of the body, you can move towards the next part. This is a great activity to relax their body if they are stressed out. Also, if they are feeling uncomfortable in some parts of the body, you can encourage them to practice deep breathing.
7. Breathing Color
The next mindfulness practice that you can teach your kids is breathing color. This activity is pretty easy to perform, and you can do it within 5 minutes. You will require some paper or canvas, coloring books, color pens, crayons, paint, and so on.
If you are using coloring books, ask them to color flowers or whatever is in the book. Even if you are using plain paper, you can guide your kids to take colors they feel relaxing and let them paint whatever they want.
You can make the activity more interesting by asking them to select some relaxing colors and guiding them to mix their stressed color with their relaxing color. You can see the difference as your kid’s mix colors.
8. Glitter Jar
Glitter Jar is one of the calming mindfulness activities for kids that you can perform within 5 minutes. This activity teaches how kids settle down and relax after settling their thoughts. You will need a jar, glitter, glue, and water for this activity.
Here’s how you can perform the glitter jar activity:
- First, take a jar bottle with water-filled to the top, leaving 3 cm space.
- Now add glitter and glue inside the bottle and close the lid of the bottle. Also, make sure there is no leakage.
- Now shake the bottle well and let your kids observe how the glitter settles down.
When the glitter is whirling around and settling down, you can give kids a pep talk. You can teach kids how unclear life gets when they cope with stress and anxiety during this time. With this activity, you should teach your kids to make decisions only when they have a clear mind and start to see things, and all they will see is chaos and will not see the clear picture.
9. Pinwheel Breathing
Everyone has done the Pinwheel activity once in their childhood. But did you know the pinwheel is one of the mindfulness exercises for kids? Pinwheel breathing is another 5 minutes activity that you can do, and I hope you know how to make the pinwheel. If you do not know how to make a pinwheel, you can take help from YouTube videos.
Pinwheel breathing is considered a good breathing exercise for kids, and this activity provides a good breathing exercise for kids. You can even use mindful breathing techniques while performing pinwheel breathing activities.
10. Spidey Sense Exercise
Spidey sense exercise is a five-minute mindfulness exercise for kids that helps activate all five senses of organs. It is a good way to keep kids attentive to their surroundings and be responsive to what’s happening around them. This exercise makes kids aware of their surroundings.
To perform this activity, first of all, you need to ask your kids to stay focused and turn on their Spidey Sense. You can ask them questions like:
- Three red things that you can see.
- Four things you can hear.
- Two things you can feel.
11. Heartbeat Exercise
Heartbeat exercise is a great way to keep kids engaged, calm, and quiet. This activity effectively teaches kids about how our heartbeats are related to our emotions and the activities that we perform. Heartbeat exercises make kids mindful about how their body functions.
Now kids need to feel their heartbeats and determine their heartbeat rate. To perform this activity, first of all, guide your kids to take deep breaths, close their eyes, and place their hand over their heart or pulse where they can feel their heartbeat.
Also, you can encourage your kids to jump for a minute and then stay still or sit down. And feel their heartbeat by placing their hand on their pulse or over their heart and observing their heartbeat rate.
12. Practise Gratitude Exercise
Making journals and practicing gratitude is also one of the ways to teach mindfulness among kids. Encouraging making journals for kids will help them to be thankful for what they have in their life.
Even if you are busy, you can practice gratitude exercise once a week or once a month. If your kids are writing journals once a week, remind them to be thankful for all the things that happened during the week.
In the journal, you can ask your kids to mention things like:
- People who make your week or month best.
- Things they got during the week or month.
- Things that made them smile or laugh out loud.
- Activities that you learned to do during the week or month.
Summing up, parents and teachers need to keep kids and students engaged in mindfulness activities. Creative mindfulness activities for kids make them active and, at the same time, help to improve their mental and physical health. Also, not forgetting such mindfulness activities for kids helps them keep away from their digital devices for a while.