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5 Exciting Mindfulness Toys for Kids (connect with your child through play)

As parents recognise the importance of mental health and starting early with their children, mindfulness toys are becoming more popular. The goal of mindfulness toys for kids is to develop the skill of being present.

Something even as adults battle to achieve sustainably!

Studies have shown the positive benefits of kids mindfulness activities. One study found that regular mindfulness activities help to develop behavioural qualities like self-regulation. The sort of independence many parents seek to instil in their kids.

Although it might seem fun, play is a significant part of a child’s development. Incorporating mindfulness toys and mindfulness playtime is, therefore, crucial for long-term growth.

What is Mindfulness for Kids?

When we practice mindfulness, we’re bringing the automatic, unconscious decisions into our conscious mind. By doing this, we become more mindful of our thoughts and emotions and how we impact those around us.

This mindfulness principle is the same for adults and kids, but the mechanisms we use are different. For kids mindfulness, the primary mechanism is play.

What are Mindfulness Toys for Kids?

With the mindfulness definition in mind, mindfulness toys for kids are simply tools to help develop the skill of being present and mindful.

For example, MindPanda developed SnapHappy, an emotional awareness game for kids to understand feelings and emotions better.

Unlike regular toys, mindfulness toys and games encourage children to verbalise what they are doing while playing.

Mindfulness Toys and Games

Here are some mindfulness toys and inspiration you might want to consider for your children.

Before getting started with any mindfulness activity, kids need to be in the right frame of mind. To get into a state of calm, start with a simple breathing meditation.

  1. Sit comfortably as a family and ask everyone to close their eyes.
  2. Ask everyone to breathe normally while counting each inhalation and exhalation silently in your head. For example, breath in, 1, out 2, in 3, out 4, and so on. When you get to 10, start again.

Kids battle to focus on this exercise for very long, so 1 – 2 minutes should be enough for them to get into a calm, relaxed state.

Try to practice this exercise regularly so kids can start to develop the discipline of sitting calmly and still. As they get older, meditation will be familiar and help to build a habit.

Once everyone is calm, it’s time for a mindfulness toy or game.

MindPanda SnapHappy Game

CBT therapy game

MindPanda’s SnapHappy card game is an excellent mindfulness toy for kids. The game helps develop social skills and emotional intelligence in an engaging game for one to eight players.

SnapHappy is a fun and effective way for parents to learn about their child’s understanding of emotions. It’s also great for mindfulness as SnapHappy encourages kids to be present and mindful of how they feel. 

Kid’s Mindfulness Scent Game

Child playing with a minfulness toy, an aromatherapy stress ball

Fragrances have fantastic physiological effects. One study found that aromatherapy is helpful for the prevention and treatment of emotional distress.

Our sense of smell triggers feeling and emotion, and our Mindfulness Stress Balls are perfect as a mindfulness toy for kids. The stress balls are great for adults too ;).

MindPanda’s stress balls come as three in a pack so that you can play three separate rounds of this scent game.

How to play:

  1. As a family, sit in a circle on the floor or comfortable place where you can sit across from each other.
  2. Ask the first (or only) child to close their eyes, and then place the stress ball in their palm.
  3. Without opening their eyes, ask your child to inspect the ball only using their hands.
  4. Ask your child to tell your child to describe the experience. How does the ball feel in your hand? When you squeeze it, what happens? Does it make you feel anything?
  5. If they haven’t already smelt the aromatherapy stress ball, ask them to hold it close to their face and smell the ball. What does the ball smell like? What does it remind you of? How does the smell make you feel, i.e.: happy, sad?

The stress balls come in three different fragrances, jasmine, lemon, and peppermint. Here is a little insight into each fragrance and why we chose to use them for our stress balls.

Flying a Kite

Two kids flying a kite in a field
Happy children launch a kite in the field at sunset. Little boy and girl on summer vacation.

You probably didn’t think a kite was a mindfulness toy for kids, did you? A kite provides the opportunity for two mindfulness activities, making the kite and flying it.

Whether you decide to make the kite yourself from scratch or assemble a store-bought one, the process of building a kite is fun and immersive. Building a kite allows you to let your child figure things out.

While helping construct the kite, ask questions about the different parts and why they think each element is necessary. What will happen in the wind? Will the construction be strong enough?

Flying a kite requires a certain amount of skill and concentration, the perfect opportunity for a mindfulness exercise. The goal is to get your child to be mindful and present without annoying them with a barrage of questions.

Consider asking your child these questions:

  • Where are you going to fly the kite? What obstacles or dangers might you encounter?
  • How does it feel flying a kite? Can they compare it to any other activity they do?
  • If you built the kite yourselves, is there anything they think could be better about the construction?

Building a House of Cards

A house of playing cards is one of the most simple mindfulness toys for kids.
casino, gambling, games of chance, hazard and insecurity concept – house of playing cards over white background

Building a house of cards requires intense concentration and patience. When paired with a breathing exercise, building a house of cards is an excellent mindfulness game for kids.

  • As someone picks up a card, they breathe in.
  • After the card is positioned, they breathe out.

When the house of cards topples, ask what happened and what your child can do to prevent it from happening again?

Making a Sensory Bottle

Like building a kite, sensory or calming bottles are great dual-purpose mindfulness toys for kids. Therapists often use sensory bottles to help calm and relax children, especially in moments of stress.

The first mindfulness activity is making the sensory bottle, and the second is watching everything swirl and settle, much like a snow globe.

Here is what you need for a sensory bottle:

  1. A transparent 1 or 2 litre (33 oz or 67 oz) bottle
  2. Glitter – as many colours as you like
  3. Food colouring
  4. Sequins
  5. Water beads
  6. Vegetable glycerine
  7. Any other fun accessories – lego, buttons, that sort of thing

Follow these video instructions to help put together your sensory bottle.

FAQs

What are the best mindfulness toys?

The best mindfulness toys will encourage your child to focus and express their emotions. Keep in mind that mindfulness toys will differ depending on the child’s age, cognitive ability, maturity etc. Finding a suitable mindfulness toy might require some testing.

How can I practice mindfulness with my child?

Any toy or activity where you can communicate with your child is practising mindfulness. Our SnapHappy game is the perfect example. The game encourages families to be present and mindful of their emotions.

The breathing exercise we described earlier in this article is another simple way for families to practice mindfulness together.

What do you get kids instead of toys?

Good alternatives to regular toys are items that require children to focus—for example, building a model ship or a challenging Lego set.

15 Easy Mindfulness Activities for Kids (toddlers to teens)

Group practicing mindfulness activities for kids

Keeping kids entertained with wholesome things to do is tough! Mindfulness activities for kids provide an excellent opportunity to engage with young ones while helping them to develop valuable life skills.

In this article, we share the best mindfulness activities for kids of all ages. We’ll start with toddlers and end with early teens. Feel free to skip to your preferred age group.

While we have split these kids mindfulness exercises into age groups, there are no set rules. You can try any of these activities for any age group.

Mindfulness Activities for Toddlers (1 – 3 years)

If you have a toddler, we don’t have to tell you how difficult it can be to get them to sit still or focus for extended periods!

The most effective mindfulness activities for toddlers are basic sensory recognition exercises – smell, taste, touch, hear, see. The goal is to develop a curious mindset, the basis for mindfulness and mediation.

Mindful Bathtime 

Mindful bathtime with a young child

With fewer distractions, bathtime is a fantastic opportunity to teach a toddler mindfulness. As you’re washing your child, make a point of verbalising what you are doing. 

For example, “washing Jake’s back.” Try to get your child to repeat what you are saying. Use items in the bath like soap, sponge, face cloth, or toys to encourage your child to verbalise things that might otherwise remain in the subconscious. For example, “soap is slimy, or the sponge is soft.”

Mindful Eating

Mealtime is another opportunity for a toddler’s mindfulness activity. Talk to them about the food. Teach your child to describe the flavour, texture, and perhaps aroma of what they are eating. Again, the goal is to make unconscious thoughts and actions conscious.

Mindful Playtime

Most of a child’s early development comes from play. Playtime is a fantastic opportunity to encourage your child to play consciously. Choose games and activities which stimulate the senses.

If you choose an art project, start by getting them to feel the texture of the paint, the bristles of the brush, and verbalise those actions. 

Through all of these mindfulness activities for toddlers, the goal is to nurture a curious mind. Our goal is to bring the unconscious to the conscious mind. 

Mindfulness Activities for Preschoolers (4 – 6 years)

As your child progresses from toddler to preschooler, their vocabulary grows, and they begin to start identifying emotions

This stage of development is the perfect time to use mindfulness activities to teach your child about understanding and dealing with emotions.

SnapHappy Emotional Awareness Game

SnapHappy emotional awareness game

MindPanda’s SnapHappy emotional awareness game is perfect for preschoolers but can also be helpful for kids up to the age of 10.

SnapHappy encourages children to think outside the box to help build social skills and emotional intelligence. The game prompts players to describe emotions and why these feelings might occur.

Mindful Observation

Family in the park practicing mindful observation

Even as adults, we rarely stop to sit and observe the world around us. That’s why a mindful observation activity could benefit both you and your child.

Mindful observation is an essential exercise in this list as it’s a mindfulness activity we can continue to practice throughout our lives.

You can practice this indoors or outdoors, but somewhere less familiar like a park or other public space will be more effective. Find a place to sit or lay down and observe what’s around you. 

You could do something as simple as staring up at the sky and watch clouds pass by, talking about the different shapes. 

  • What does the cloud look like to you? 
  • Does the cloud remind you of something?
  • How does that shape make you feel? And why does it make them feel that way?

Make sure you also take a turn answering those questions yourself. Your input will encourage your child to think differently about emotions, and you might learn something too!

Counting Heartbeats

Counting heartbeats is a fantastic way to slow things down and get your child into a calm state, and a great introduction to meditation. This kids mindfulness activity is especially effective in the evenings before bed.

  1. With your child, find a quiet place to sit or lie down. 
  2. Close your eyes and place your hand over your heart.
  3. Set a timer for one minute.
  4. Ask your child to feel their heart beating and to count each beat silently in their head for a minute.
  5. You can then repeat this exercise, but this time they have to follow their breath – in, one, out two, in three, and so on.

Once complete, ask your child how many beats or breaths they counted? How do they feel after doing the exercise? 

Exploring Sounds

This mindfulness activity for preschoolers will help develop listening skills. Using objects around the house or find a YouTube video with different sounds.

When you make a sound, for example, banging a pot. Ask your child to listen until the sound complete disappears, and then put their hand up. As you can imagine, sounds with long decays like a steel triangle or metal pot will make this game more interesting.

You can also find instrument sounds on YouTube and get your kids to listen to identify the quality of each instrument. Loud or soft, high or low pitch, how long it takes to decay, etc.

Drawing Emotions

Mother and child engaging in mindful drawing

Like the SnapHappy game, drawing emotions is an excellent way for children to identify their feelings. 

You will need coloured pens/pencils/crayons/paint and paper for this kids’ mindfulness activity.

  • Describe an emotion and ask your kids to draw it.
  • They can draw whatever they like and encourage them to use a colour or colours they associate with that feeling.

You can also use a colouring book for this activity. For example, ask your child to colour in an animal using colours to show that it’s feeling happy.

Mindfulness Activities for Kids (7 – 12 Years)

In the first few years of school, kids start to learn the discipline of sitting still. You can now begin to develop mindfulness activities for kids that introduce them to meditation practices.

Using these mindfulness exercises, you can prepare your kids for the wild ride of becoming a teenager and learning to cope with stress and anxiety.

Kids Yoga

Mother and kids practicing yoga

Yoga is arguably one of the most utilised mindfulness practices in the world. Countless studies describe the incredible benefits of yoga, both physically and mentally.

In the United States, one study looked at more than 940 schools where yoga is part of the regular curriculum. Researchers learn that yoga helped with skills like self-regulation and positive social interaction.

Here is a 10-minute yoga practice for kids to learn at home or school.

Mindful Breathing

Mindful breathing is excellent for kids but also a beneficial mindfulness activity for adults. It’s a great opportunity to introduce your child to a simple meditation practice.

Start with 1 – 2 minutes, but try to work your way up to 5 minutes or longer. Find a quiet place, preferably to sit, but you can also do this lying down.

  • Start your timer.
  • Get your child to place one hand over their chest or tummy and close their eyes.
  • Ask them to breathe normally while following their breath. A hand placed over the chest or stomach will make it easier to follow each breath and provide an area of focus.
  • At the same time, they can count each inhalation and exhalation to ten before starting from one again. For example, in, one, out, two, in, three, out, four, and so on.

You can also try this deep breathing exercise in the evening before bed. Deep breathing calms the mind and puts your child in a peaceful state, perfect for bedtime.

Gratitude Exercise

7 to 12-year-olds might be a bit young for journaling, but you can start sowing the seed. Your child can use words, a drawing, or other art for this gratitude exercise for kids.

If you can get into the habit of doing this daily or even weekly, this mindfulness activity can help to develop a regular mindfulness routine as your child gets older.

  • Using their preferred medium (writing, drawing, art), ask your child to describe three things that made them grateful that day or week.
  • You can save these on a “grateful wall” or in a file so you can sit with your child and regularly review the positive things in their lives.

Kid’s Mindfulness Scent Game

Child playing with a minfulness toy, an aromatherapy stress ball

Fragrances have fantastic physiological effects. One study found that aromatherapy is helpful for the prevention and treatment of emotional distress.

Our sense of smell triggers feeling and emotion, and our Mindfulness Stress Balls are perfect as a mindfulness toy for kids. The stress balls are great for adults too ;).

How to play:

  1. Sit in a circle on the floor or a comfortable place where you can sit across from each other.
  2. Ask the first (or only) child to close their eyes, and then place the stress ball in their palm.
  3. Without opening their eyes, ask your child to inspect the ball only using their hands.
  4. Ask your child to tell your child to describe the experience. How does the ball feel in your hand? When you squeeze it, what happens? Does it make you feel anything?
  5. If they haven’t already smelt the aromatherapy stress ball, ask them to hold it close to their face and smell the ball. What does the ball smell like? What does it remind you of? How does the smell make you feel, i.e., happy, sad?

Mindfulness Activities for Teens (13+ Years)

At 13, your kids are more familiar with identifying feelings and emotions, but now you want to develop the skills to deal with the stress and anxiety of being a teenager.

Mindfulness Meditation

Teenager practicing mindfulness meditation

Mindfulness mediation has fantastic mental and physical health benefits. Practising mindfulness mediation regularly also increases cognitive performance, a crucial attribute for teenagers as schoolwork starts to get more mentally challenging. Regular mindfulness practice also helps teens develop self-love and self-acceptance.

For this mindfulness meditation exercise, try to do a minimum of 5 minutes to work towards a 30-minute practice. You can do this meditation with your child to offer silent support.

  • Set a timer for the mediation.
  • Close your eyes and breathe normally. Try to breathe only through the nose, but you can use the mouth instead if that’s too challenging.
  • Focus on the breath entering and leaving the body in the area around the nose and mouth. With a curious mind, notice how the breath feels around your nose and mouth.
  • Every time the mind wanders, identify the emotion associated with distraction and return to the breath. For example, if your child starts thinking about an exam, they might notice they are anxious and then bring the mind back to focusing on the breath.
  • It doesn’t matter if the same distraction comes up continuously or that they get distracted often. The goal for your child is to be mindful of when they are distracted and return to the breath.

If you or your child needs some guidance, here is a 10-minute and 30-minute guided mediation for teenagers.

Journaling

Early teens is an excellent time for your child to start journaling. Your teenager can also incorporate gratitude journaling with this mindfulness activity.

While journaling is a personal experience, you can practice this mindfulness exercise together. Find a comfortable place in your home where you can sit together. Make sure it’s a space where your teenager knows they can write in confidence without anyone seeing what they are writing.

Here is some teen journal prompts to get you started:

  • Write five things that made you grateful today.
  • Write about something difficult that you experienced today. How did it make you feel, and why? What did you learn? What can you do better next time?
  • What brings you the most joy and why?
  • List three bad things about social media and what you would do to change them?
  • What is a good way to give back to your community?
  • Describe an instance where you were motivated today?
  • How do you think your best friend would describe you?
  • List five qualities your best friend or family member has that makes you love them.
  • The UN has asked you to give a speech about anything. What would you talk about and why?

Mindful Sounds & Music

Teenager listening to mindfulness meditation

For those who struggle with standard breathing mediation, using instrumental music or sounds provide an excellent anchor for focus.

Below are two examples of music and soundscapes your teenager can use as anchors. Start with 5 minutes to work towards 30 minutes. This mindfulness exercise for kids can be practised at any time of the day but is highly effective at calming the mind before bed.

  • Close your eyes, and breath normally.
  • While being mindful of your breathing, listen to the music or soundscape, identify how it changes, what sounds you hear, and your emotions.

After this mindfulness exercise, your child could write a short journal entry about the experience.

Conclusion

The common theme of mindfulness activities for kids is awareness. The goal is for your child to develop a routine of being aware of your feelings and emotions.

The art of mindfulness is being aware of what’s happening in your unconscious mind. Often those thoughts and feelings control our actions, sometimes to our detriment.
By practising mindfulness, your child will improve their social skills, self-regulation, and mental performance. In addition, they will learn to identify their feelings and emotions and the coping mechanisms to deal with those issues.

FAQ’s

What are some mindfulness activities?

Breathing exercises are some great introductory activities to get started.

What is mindfulness for kids?

Mindfulness for kids is exactly the same as mindfulness for adults, but it is simplified to help kids understand it better.

How do you teach students mindfulness?

Using mindfulness activities is a great way to get students into mindfulness.

How do you explain mindfulness to elementary students?

Using mindfulness activities is a very efficient way of helping younger students understand mindfulness.

What is Mindful Parenting? STOP in the Name of Love.

Mindful Parenting

Our attention is the most precious gift we can give to our children. Ha! Try maintaining your focus when your toddler cries hot tears because wearing socks is just so wrong. And you needed to be out of the house ten minutes ago.

Or when listening to another improvised ‘play’ involving a robot, dinosaur and three carrots. With a plotline as flat as a faulty cardiogram, who can blame your mind for wandering? Not us. But seriously, there’s a reason why we’re writing about mindful parenting. There’s a need for it.

Time after time

We’re spending more time with our children than previous generations. On average, mothers now spend 104 minutes on parenting each day (compared to 54 mins in 1965). Fathers spend an average of 59 minutes (up from 16 mins). It’s a lot, but many of us still feel guilty about quality time. Is that because we spend so much time in a frazzled frenzy of emotion? (Or on auto-pilot, glued to our phones?)

Mindfulness means awareness of the present moment. It offers an escape from spiralling thoughts. And it’s great for learning to regulate strong emotions. Like when you discover a new portrait – in permanent marker on your sitting room wall.

Mindful parenting isn’t about positive thinking or just trying harder though. It’s about applying mindfulness techniques to help you pay attention, react less and replenish your own reserves. Easy to say, but hard to achieve when you can’t even go to the bathroom on your own. Here’s how to get going:

STOP (in the name of love)

Step one: Stop. Unless a child is in physical danger, of course.

Step two: Take a deep breath. Or two.

Step three: Observe. Take stock of how you’re feeling, physically and emotionally. Look around and notice what’s going on.

Step four: Proceed. Hopefully, you’ll have gained a moment of calm. Use it to move forward with awareness.

Once you have

A little help from your friends

There’s a lot of good advice out there. Build your support network. Nap when your child naps. Take care of yourself. Multitasking is a myth. Good advice but tricky to pull off in practice.

Ego depletion is a concept in psychology that explains self-control as a limited resource. If you’ve ever lost your cool after a long and stressful day, you might agree. Meditation can feel like a selfish indulgence, especially when the housework is piling up. But finding time to recharge your batteries can save energy in the long run. And create a healthier atmosphere in your home.

Make time for regular mindfulness meditation. Make arrangements for the kids – or get them involved. If you’re after some inspiration, check out our free resource page.

Perfect illusion

Think back to when you found out you were expecting. What did you want to be like as a parent? While we’re hard-wired to want to do the best for our children, sometimes our own expectations cause us stress. And because our children are individuals, they may or may not live up to our wishes. Even in key areas like when it comes to wearing socks.

During your mindfulness practice, you’ll learn to let go of expectations. Instead, you observe what is – no judgement allowed. By releasing the weight of your own expectations, you’ll free up time and energy for your family life. And you’ll learn to be truly present during many cute and fun moments with your brood.

Mindfulness for kids


Mindful parenting isn’t just about the grownups. Exploring mindfulness with your children can help them become aware of their own emotions. And make tricky transitions (like morning and bedtime routines) easier to manage. Check out our blog for ideas.

There’s no doubt: parenting is a marathon. And mindfulness for mums and dads can help you make it to the finish line. (You may still need a long lie-down afterwards though.)

Practice being totally present with your kids.

When it gets down to it, mindful parenting is all about being present and focused with your children, to better understand their emotions and to give them your full attention. Yes, this may not be achievable for every minute we spend with our kids, so set aside 30-60 minutes each day for the following.

Set aside all distractions, put your phone on silent and turn of the TV.

Give your children your undivided attention. Whether you are colouring in, playing robots Vs carrots or having a fun game of tickles, be there fully. Try not to let your mind ponder what you will make for dinner or what tv series is on the cards for tonight. Be completely present and focused on the task at hand, which is to spend quality time with your kids.

Talk more! Talk about emotions, feelings, goals and aspirations with your kids.

What works for you? We’d love to know. Tell us in the comments below.

FAQ’s

What is Mindful Parenting?

Mindful parenting is being totally present with your kids.

What does being mindful mean for kids?

Exactly as it does for adults except with kids we have to take things a little slower and relate it to their age

What is Lazy Parenting?

Lazy parenting can be defined as not spending present and focused time with your kids.

What is the main Tennant of mindfulness?

The main point of mindfulness is to be present in the moment.

Should Mindfulness Be Practiced In Schools

Mindfulness in Schools

Put yourself in a teacher’s shoes for a minute. Hear the silence in the classroom after the students have gone home. See the colorful wall displays in your mind’s eye. Or catch a whiff of ripe banana from someone’s forgotten lunch bag. And tomorrow will hold challenges, from learning objectives to trying behavior. So could teaching mindfulness in schools help you meet them?

And the UK government thinks so too. In 2019, 370 UK schools joined a worldwide mindfulness program. It’s testing how best to prepare young people for a changing world. The trial is due to run until 2021, but here’s what we’ve found out in the meantime:

State of the nation’s children

The headlines are worrying. There are more unhappy children; mental health disorders are increasing. The government is investing £10 million in tackling bad behaviour. And low-level disruptive behaviour can cost pupils up to 38 days of learning per year. The list goes on.

All due to a complex mix of factors, but adding up to a lot of pressure on the youngest members of society. Would teaching mindfulness in the classroom give them new tools to cope? Or only create teachers another thing to do?

The benefits of mindfulness have been proven through research. Mostly for adults, but studies focusing on children are catching up. And the results so far are promising, showing:

The research

  • Increased attention span
  • Reduction in stress and anxiety
  • Better regulation of emotions
  • Improved sleep
  • Greater compassion, including towards yourself

And research also shows that this translates into better attendance and grades – both high on school inspectors’ lists. But mindfulness in schools isn’t a cure-all. It can only mitigate stress in children’s lives. Our kids have less freedom to explore than ever, but they need an array of healthy habits. Good runarounds outside included.

The teacher’s perspective

From breakfast clubs to sanitary products, schools are doing more to support vulnerable children. This means the pastoral role of teachers is getting bigger. At what point does the workload become unachievable?

In fact, teachers themselves benefit from mindfulness programmes too. And One in three UK teachers leaves the profession within five years of qualifying, often citing stress. So without addressing underlying pressures, mindfulness becomes just a sticking plaster. But it can be a tool in schools’ efforts to look after their staff.

And setting up a mindfulness programme doesn’t have to be expensive or time-consuming.

For most schools, the biggest investment is sending a teacher for training. And while activities should be age-appropriate, it’s not all about the lotus position. Many exercises can be integrated in an assembly or used to focus minds after lunch. So mindful movement, eating or colouring can all be effective with different age groups. For more ideas, why not check out our blog?

Head, shoulders, amygdala, hippocampus…

But our children will live in a world that doesn’t exist yet. And teaching old certainties may not be enough to prepare them. Instead, they need the mental ‘tools’ to navigate uncertainty with confidence. So by teaching mindfulness in schools can give them just that.

So, what do you think? Should mindfulness be taught in schools? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below.

5 Easy mindfulness exercises for kids

5 Easy Mindfulness Exercises For Kids

5 Easy Mindfulness Exercises
For Kids

 

Learning mindfulness at an early age can definitely be one of the best gifts for young people of all ages. Especially as they navigate the tricky changes that come with growing up. From dealing with pressures at school, homework and exams, to discovering their emerging identities, and exploring friendships and peer groups, these 5 easy mindfulness exercises for kids can be a wonderful way to help them feel happier and more confident.

5 Easy Mindfulness Exercises For Kids

Try these 5 easy mindfulness exercises for kids

Mindful breathing

One of the simplest and most powerful mindfulness exercises for kids. Mindful breathing is the perfect way to begin to connect with the benefits of meditation.

Mindful breathing can be a great tool to promote calmness, especially when feeling stressed, anxious or upset.

A simple way to teach and practice this is by encouraging children to sit or stand in a comfortable position, close their eyes, and begin to notice how their breath feels. Directions such as noticing if their breath tickles their nostrils, flutters in the belly, or other parts of their body, can be a great way to start.

As they start to pay attention, you can also add counting the breath. Such as breathing in and out for a 5-count.

Mindful eating

While meal times can often be a battleground with children, adding a mindfulness practice to the dinner table can make it a novel experience.

It’s often better to start small and simple. With a simple snack such as fruit, encourage children to investigate the many different sensations they can experience – from the colours, shapes and textures they encounter, to the smells, tastes and feeling of eating and drinking something.

To add an extra dimension of focus and attention, you can even try doing this blindfolded. This can be a fun and enjoyable way to discover surprising things about everyday foods!

Mindful colouring

Perfect for children of all ages, mindful colouring is the ideal rainy day mindfulness activity.
While many children enjoy colouring activities, you can use this to explore more mindfulness and creativity every day, by encouraging them to pay attention to the colours they choose, and how they feel.

A great to do is by inviting them to choose colours that reflect their feelings and emotions.
This can be a helpful way to encourage children to express their emotions in a safe and guided way.

mindfulness exercises for kids

Mindful walking

As the weather improves, why not mix up your mindfulness exercises for kids with a simple mindful walking practice?

Mindful walking can be a lovely way to encourage more attentiveness and awareness to our environment. A great way to begin to explore this is by taking outdoor walks. It encourages children to explore and be curious about the sights, sounds, smells and experiences they encounter as they walk. Encourage periods of silence, where children are invited to pay attention, imagine and day dream.

It’s worth starting small, to encourage building attention and awareness skills over time – try shorter walks on a regular basis, before going on to longer sessions.

Mindful guided meditations

Guided mediations can be a great way to relax. Especially for children who are experiencing difficulty in winding down.

Simple and uncomplicated guided meditations often work the best, such as those featuring easy to follow instructions, or relaxing music.

Exploring guided meditations together can also be great to practice mindfulness together. It can be used to establish a daily routine. Why not try choosing a daily guided mindfulness meditation that can be practiced every evening, to help create an atmosphere of calmness and relaxation before bed time?

We hope we found some useful exercises to help your young ones practice mindfulness. Please comment below the techniques that have helped you. 

Check out some easy ways on how to introduce mindfulness to your children – Click HERE.

How to introduce meditation to your children

Children meditation mindfulness

It’s so easy in today’s hectic whirlwind of modern life to become distracted from the moment and lost in a stream of habitual thinking. We are worried about future problems that may or may not ever happen or dwelling on past mistakes. With the explosion of research validating its many benefits, it’s no surprise that meditation is bringing a calm to the storm. This short article will show you 4 easy ways to introduce meditation to your children.

We have over 20,000 thoughts every day which our emotions reflect upon. One minute we are happy, the next angry, the next anxious and the next depressed.  Meditation helps us to quieten the voice in our heads and become aware of what is really going on inside. It allows us to appreciate the good times even more and manage the bad with a calm approach. So if you haven’t been exposed to the power of mindfulness and meditation, you can check out some studies done by Harvard university here, and some direct experiences here.

As adults, having the commitment and patience to stick with meditation is no small feat.  So imagine being taught this wonderful gift as a child and how easy it would be to pick up and how much of a better place the world would be if we were all present, caring, and compassionate.

While mindfulness is now being taught as an extra curriculum in some schools across the world, children follow their parent’s guidance more than anything else.  This is why, as a parent, you should help to enforce this wonderful habit. I understand that this is easier said than done! From my own experience, I have found some subtle tips and techniques that have worked for myself and my friends which I would love to share with you.

4 Ways To Introduce Meditation To Your Children

1. Create a special place

Children love fantasy, they love using their imagination.  I remember being a kid, we would make pillow forts and cover dungeons.  Any place in the house that we decorated with toys would be classed as a special place and you needed a special passcode to get in.  Designate a special place for your kids to meditate and allow them to name it.  Encourage them to decorate it with things that are meaningful to them.  Maybe even buy them a ‘special’ meditation cushion and let them know that this is a sacred place for them to come and quiet their mind.

introduce meditation to your children

2. Lead by example

Children emulate their parents.  At a young age all they want to do is be like them and to do the “adult” things.  So lead by example by first developing your own practice. So make sure you are committed to your practice and that your kids see that this is a non-negotiable for you each day.  Once there is a genuine interest built up on their part, they will be so much more open to developing their own practice.

3. Make Meditation simple

It’s best not to cloud your young ones with the 101 different types of meditation practices there are out there. Instead put yourself in their shoes and break it down for them. So let them know what to expect. It could go something like this, “Focus on your breath and feel the sensation as you inhale and exhale.  Feel the air flowing through your body.  The reason we do this is to focus our attention, which helps quiet our minds.  After a couple of minutes you might find that you are no longer focusing on your breath and you are lost in thought. Don’t worry!  This is natural.  As soon as you catch yourself lost in thought just bring your attention back to your breath.”

So this does a number of things. It lets them know what to expect and avoids frustration arising when they inevitably get lost in some thoughts throughout their practice.

4. Use guided meditations

So guided meditations come down to personal preference.  Some people like having that sense of direction throughout their practice and some prefer total silence.  For your children I would definitely recommend trying some different guided meditations because it allows them to choose for themselves.  Guided meditations will help give them some guidance through the early stage of their practice and prevent them getting disheartened at the early stages of their journey.

And the more we can encourage our young ones to become more mindful and aware of what is going on inside, and the more compassionate, caring, focused and driven they will be as they flourish into adulthood.

Mindfulness will make the world a more peaceful place, and where better to start than our children.

So we hope you enjoyed this post and that you have discovered a few helpful tips to help you introduce meditation into the lives of your young ones. Check out some of the benefits of teaching your children the art of mindfulness and meditation here.

Please let us know your thoughts or if you have any more useful tips to share with the community.

5 reasons why your children should be practicing mindfulness

Mindfulness Meditation Practices Children

5 Reasons To Get Your Children Practicing Mindfulness

Adults in all walks of life have been practicing mindfulness for decades and the benefits are near endless (Benefits). Research on mindfulness for children however is not yet as extensive, but the amount of studies are rapidly growing and some show that kids can get more from mindful living than adults.

Over the past 10 years, mental health issues with young children has reached an all-time high. The most common of these mental health problems are anxiety, depression and hyperactivity (ADHD).  Such disorders in young children do not have a single definite cause, although a lot of people believe that the rapidly growing social media channels and the young adoption of these platforms play a big part.  Studies show that social media can run the risk of promoting low self-esteem, poor body image and a tendency to self-criticise. 

Mindfulness Meditation Practices Children

Mindfulness teachings in schools are becoming more widespread.
According to recent research conducted by the university Of California, the benefits of mindfulness teachings in schools include:

  • Decreased stress
  • Increased peer interactions
  • Improved focus
  • Increased grades

5 Key Benefits Of Teaching Your Children To Be Mindful

1. Increases peer awareness and compassion

Mindfulness has been proven to increase empathy and compassion for others by giving us that extra second before we say something that may offend or belittle another person.
Mindful children show more awareness over one and others feelings and are more likely to be kind to and respect their peers.

2. Improves attention

Children’s mindfulness training begins with focusing on something specific, like taste, sound or breath.  This focus helps them come out of the constant mind activity and become more rooted in the moment.  After practice, children are more capable of being attentive and focused for longer periods of time.

Better attention skills, in turn, help them do better in school, sports or art.  It helps them retain information better and achieve higher scores on tests.  After all, we all perform better when we pay more attention to what we are doing.

3. Improves self-regulation & control

Mindfulness allows us to become aware of what our minds are really up to which helps us to deal with tough emotions and give us control over our impulses.  A key tool for any youngster.

Without mindfulness, children are more reactive and allow situations to control their emotions.  With mindfulness they tend to respond to situations in a more balanced and rational way.

4. Mindfulness reduces Stress & Anxiety

The main cause of anxiety tends to be future thinking, meaning to think ahead of time.  For children this could be thinking forward to starting school, meeting new people or taking a test.  Mindful practices for children gives them more control and awareness over their thoughts, giving them that reminder to breathe and relax.

Researchers from the John Hopkins University combed through over 18,000 mindfulness studies and concluded that the number one benefit of meditation was anxiety relief.

5. Reduces Hyperactivity

Hyperactivity the result of our children having excess energy and no were to direct it.  This energy is then expelled at what feels like the worst times possible.  Ironically, Mindfulness and meditation has been proven to give us more energy throughout the day.  So how can this help reduce hyperactivity? Being mindful gives us the awareness and focus that is required to be more efficient with our energy. Allowing children to go full out when the time is right but remain calm and focused when in class or sitting down to a meal.

Teaching kids mindfulnes

At the core of all mental health issues is compulsive overthinking.  Mindfulness is the practice of reducing these thoughts and in turn becoming more aware of what goes on inside our heads.  Giving us more control over our minds rather than our minds controlling us.

Mindfulness is a skill, and like all other skills it takes time and practice for them to become effective. It can be frustrating when you don’t see immediate results but give it time, stick with the practice and you will start seeing results in no time.

Stay tuned this week for some fun and exciting techniques for teaching your young ones the art of being mindful.

It would be great to hear your thoughts on this article as the only way for us to provide you with better information is to know what you like and what you don’t.

Have a wonderful day wherever you are.

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