Family friendly activities & resources that promote Mindfulness

Do you practice mindfulness?

 

Do you know what mindfulness entails?

 

Read on to find out more about mindfulness and the importance it has on you and your family’s  overall well being!

 

 


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The practice of mindfulness

All the rage lately has been surrounded around something called “Mindfulness”. Mindfulness is a mental state in which you consciously are and become aware of your surroundings. It is about being aware in the present moment; and focusing on that and reflecting on the feelings that come from being consciously aware.

 

 

The many benefits of mindfulness

There is a whole movement of mindfulness going on right now; it is incorporated into many K-12 schools around the globe, many companies also utilize the benefits of mindfulness for their employees, and it is practiced in many peoples homes as well. According to Mindful Schools; an organization that focuses on providing training and resources for teachers to implement mindfulness into their classrooms; practicing mindful exercises in classrooms can lead to better attention, compassion, regulation of emotions, and can be calming.

Extensive research on mindfulness activities proves that it can change the brain, contributes to positive cognitive outcomes, social-emotional skills, and overall well being. Mindfulness can help reduce toxic stress for students, teachers, and parents. Families can benefit greatly by practicing mindfulness activities one on one and as a family.

 

 

The implementation and practice of mindfulness activities should be focused in two main areas. The focus should be on the mind and the heart.

 

 

 

 

Family friendly mindfulness activities

  • Body poses: promote the conscious awareness of the body while practicing the various poses

Have a quiet, open space where you can practice various body poses.

The Superman: practice by standing with your feet shoulder length apart.  Clench your fists, then extend your arms out in front of you.  Try stretching our your arms and body as much as possible while keeping your feet in place. Incorporating various simple to complex yoga exercises can also be beneficial as well.

 

  • The Mindful Jar: promote how to control or maintain strong emotions

Fill a clear jar with water and glitter glue (or glue and dry glitter).  Give the jar a good shake.  Now, imagine that the glitter are your mad, angry, or sad emotions.  You can begin to notice how the glitter whirls around, making it hard to see clearly.  Reference the glitter to the emotions, and remember that it is normal and ok to feel the emotions that you feel.  As the glitter settles, remind yourselves that it is similar to how you begin to get your emotions under control or maintained, like the glitter.

 

  • Spidey senses: become aware of your surroundings using one, many or all of your senses

This exercise has the most benefits in an outdoor environment, but can be done indoors as well.  Lie quietly on your back or stomach, close your eyes and listen to the surroundings and sounds of nature around you.  Use your heightened “spidey” senses of smell, taste, sight, hearing, and touch to focus your attention on the present, bringing conscious awareness to the information that the senses bring in.

 

  • Body scan: promotes the conscious ability of your body in the present tense

Find a nice, quiet place where you can lie comfortably.  Close your eyes, begin to squeeze and release all the muscles in your body; starting from the top of your body and working your way down to your toes.  Take note of and discuss how your body feels, while paying close attention to your breathing and heartbeat.

Mindfulness Resources

 

 

When I was a classroom teacher, I incorporated mindful exercises and practices into my classroom routine.  After doing so, I noticed a change in the way the children focused, worked together better and showed more compassion towards the others in the classroom.  Incorporating mindfulness can be very beneficial if practiced on a regular basis.  There are great resources for families to practice and incorporate mindful activities into your home.  Check out these amazing items from Generation Mindful!

 

Mindfulness resources from Generation Mindful!

PeaceMakers

PeaceMakers is a game that nurtures and promotes mindfulness and compassion.  PeaceMakers helps kids and adults become more aware of their ideas, thoughts, and feelings in a fun, engaging way.  The daily message cards boost social & emotional skills, self-love, a growth mindset and confidence.

Inside each box you will find:

  • Three welcome cards: these cards will introduce you to the deck and help you get started using them in diverse settings with children ages 3 and up.
  • Seven adult cards: this mini deck, ideal for teens, parents, educators and more, will further introduce you to the deck’s seven themes. Adults working with PeaceMakers find this mini deck helps them lead and guide by example, especially in times of stress.
  • 35 cards for all ages: simple, powerful affirming messages exploring seven themes (Power, Joy, Balance, Love, Peace, Intuition, and Forgiveness).

 

 

Time-In Toolkit

The Time-In Toolkit is a complete kit that teaches children social & emotional skills in a calming way.  The Time-InToolkit teaches children how to manage their emotions, moods, and feelings in a fun, interactive way.  Taking a time-in is not meant or used as a punishment; it is instead used to teach children how to learn to calm their body and process their emotions positively so they can problem solve, learn and grow.

The Time-In ToolKit comes with a 90 page illustrated digital manual including 40 pages of bonus printables to walk you through the process of

1) creating a calming space

2) introducing this space, along with the concept of Time-In’s to children

3) replacing time-outs and punishment in your home and/or classroom

 

Also comes with…
  • Creating A Calming Corner & Using Time-Ins: 50 pages of instructions (PDF)
  • Bonus Printables (PDF): This 40 page set of printables comes at the end of your Digital Manual to help you take Time-In’s more powerfully into your home, school and/or therapy practice. Because these sheets are PDF’s, they can be used with multiple children again and again at no extra cost to you.

 

 

 

Partial Time-In Toolkit Bundle

Already have the PeaceMakers Game, but interested in the Time-In Toolkit?  No worries, the Partial Time-In Toolkit Bundle contains everything that the Time-In Toolkit contains, except the PeaceMakers Game!

Also comes with…
  • Creating A Calming Corner & Using Time-Ins: 50 pages of instructions (PDF)
  • Bonus Printables (PDF): This 40 page set of printables comes at the end of your Digital Manual to help you take Time-In’s more powerfully into your home, school and/or therapy practice. Because these sheets are PDF’s, they can be used with multiple children again and again at no extra cost to you.

 

 

Mindfulness works!

There are many benefits and ways to incorporate mindfulness into your day and family. The bottom line is that just taking a moment occasionally can be beneficial to your overall health and well being. I hope that you found a few useful activities and resources to practice mindfulness with your family!  It is all about being consciously aware of your body, feelings, and your surroundings.

 

 

 

Anitra J.

71 Comments

  1. I am so glad this is being implemented into the schools in our area. Making children aware of their surroundings, teaching them to be present, it’s so important and such a great resource for them to use in the real world!

  2. I love the spidey senses activity! I aim to start working on this with my kids. We try to leave for our walk to school school early each day, so that if we see something interesting on the way, we have the time to stop and check it out.

    #wanderingwednesday

  3. I really like the idea of these mindfulness exercises. Something to add into our day during homeschool!

  4. I love the idea of a time-in toolkit. While I understand the need for time-outs, I think a constructive time-in would be much better suited so that a little one can explore their emotions and learn to calm themselves down without throwing a huge fit.

  5. I love the idea of the mindful jar! It’s a great idea.

    Thanks for joining #WanderingWednesday!

  6. My oldest daughter had a Mindful Jar. I actually need to get her to use it more again. These are great ideas.

  7. What a great idea to utilize. It is so important to teach our children to be mindful. I will try to add some of these to our routines! #wanderingwednesday

  8. Jackie says:

    These look like great resources to teach your child mindfulness. I especially like the mindful jar!

  9. These are great activities!! Thanks for the suggestions!!

  10. These are great resourced for children!

  11. All of this information is fantastic! It’s so beneficial for both children and adults to have opportunities to be in tune with their minds and bodies. When I taught K, we had a 10 minute meditation time every day and it was great for refocusing and calming my students down.

  12. Nige says:

    A useful informative post Thank you for linking to #Thatfridaylinky please come back next week

  13. These are some great ideas, I will be trying a couple.

  14. These are great, thank you so much for sharing! I am needing school curriculums for when my daughter is of age, and I think I’ll be adding this to my list of books and bundles to get!

  15. Great suggestions! I loved reading about the different poses and the jar with glitter. Great learning tool, I’m gonna have to try this with my stepson.

  16. Jody says:

    What great ideas! These practices are going to become increasingly important in today’s society, and I’m glad to see there is a greater emphasis being placed on mindfulness and taking responsibility of how we as individuals experience our world. Thanks for sharing!

  17. I love these types of activities for the family!

  18. I will be homeschooling my children this following year I WILL be ordering from these links you provided. MY 7 year old does yoga with me occasionally and it seems to help greatly with her ADHD because I will not medicate her.

  19. These would be excellent in public schools. You ever trying to contract with them to use your material?

  20. I need a Time-In! Great resources!

  21. Very insightful. I’m going to try the body scan.

  22. These resources are AWESOMMMMMME! 🙂 Thank you for sharing!! I love the Time in toolkit…can’t wait to check out more for my kiddos! 🙂

  23. I think we should all lie outside and engage our five senses. All the other suggestions are wonderful too. Practical and useful ways to get at mindfulness in our everyday ives.

  24. These resources are amazing. I particularly like the Mindful Jar with glitter. My son goes to a Charter school in Colorado and they practice mindfulness there as well as offering classes to parents. I really think it is doing wonders for the school and my son.

  25. Very interesting! I love the idea of practicing mindfulness.

  26. I love all of these ideas! Practicing mindfulness is a great thing????

  27. Love the idea for the mindful jar. Teaching children mindfulness is a great tool, but sometimes can be difficult to teach!

    -Jennifer
    https://maunelegacy.com

  28. I love your mindful jar idea! Dealing with anxiety myself, I think it is helpful for me to envision how my emotions can cloud my judgment so I can put things in perspective.

  29. These ideas are great. You seem like a really amazing resource.

  30. Heidi says:

    Great ideas! Thanks for sharing!

  31. It’s always good to play some games that make the mind work. I really enjoy playing mind type of games.

  32. These are good ideas. I would have no idea what to do with that many little kids!

  33. Fabulous resources! I love the glitter jar, and the activities for using the senses are so good for children and adults! Sometimes we need to slow down and enjoy our surroundings too!

  34. Thank you for sharing! I especially appreciate the resources you shared, like the Time-in Kit!

  35. This is so very important. I always love your ideas. I’m adding this our routine.

  36. These are great ideas! Now that I am homeschooling again, I may have to implement some of these. ????

  37. This is a great post! As I read it I told my teen daughter about the jar of glitter. She is going to make one! Thanks for this thoughtful idea.

  38. These are great ideas! Definitely will remember to implement these when I have a house full of kids for sleepovers, ha!

  39. I love the idea of practicing mindfulness as a family. Great ideas!

  40. These are great ideas on how to practice mindfulness as a family. It’s so important to be aware and I think it’s often forgotten.

  41. I am long past the children at home stage, but still get so much out of your blog posts. Here you clarify meditation. I just finished doing the simple superman pose you describe. And I feel good!

  42. This is perfect timing for me as I just attended a training yesterday on mindfulness. Some of your activities were different from the training, so I will definitely be looking into getting this rolling for my family!

  43. Love the idea of teaching our children mindfulness. I have been meaning to make a glitter jar to help my kids calm their strong emotions.

  44. I will have to incorporate some of these ideas into our family lives. I would love for my kids to be more mindful especially since I am working on my mindfulness too.

    Great tips!

  45. I love the toolkit. It definitely would be great to implement with my four year old.

  46. Maggie says:

    I like the idea of the mindfulness jar. I think it would help my 3-year-old visualize better what mindfulness is

  47. Leila says:

    I love this post so much! So many great ideas. Thanks for sharing.

  48. Love all of your tips 🙂 We’re working on adding mindfulness in our lives.

  49. Brittany says:

    I love this! This definitely needs to be incorporated into to more classrooms. The idea of the jar and glitter glue I love. I will have to do this with my children at home. My 7 year old has started to become overly emotional this year and maybe this could help!

  50. This is a fantastic post! I had never heard of the resources you mentioned so I will have to check them out!

  51. I love this post, this should helps my 8 yr daughter.

  52. Dewanna says:

    These are great tips and I look forward to exploring with my little ones.

  53. I love all those ideas, especially mindful jar and body scan, I will have to try this.

  54. Ok this is funny as I’m full grown and been grown but, I sometimes close my eyes while walking in open spaces to see if I can sense things around me and walk without tripping. Lol! Your spidey sense technique reminds me of this.

    Anyway, I am loving the body conscious technique. I will be doing this. Thank you for sharing.

  55. YES, I’ve been meaning to purchase the Time In Toolkit for awhile now. No time like a quarantine, right?

  56. Mindfulness is so important right now! Love the tips and tools you provide!

  57. Love this!!! It is something that we do often. You have some great ideas, looking forward to implementing them.

  58. Staying mindful in the moment is something we should all be working on especially in this age of technology. I’ve been working on it for a while now and im so glad I came across your blog post, its exactly what I needed to read up on today 🙂

    1. Anitra says:

      You are absolutely right, Jessica! I’m glad you found my post helpful, and practicing mindfulness should be incorporated into our daily lives as much as possible!

  59. These are such great ideas for activities. I think mindfulness is so important.

  60. Mindfulness is so important for everyone! I would love to see mindfulness activities incorporated more into the schools. I love the idea of the Time-In!

  61. I would love to incorporate doing this with my daughter.

  62. Love the resources you’ve included here to help with mindfulness! So pretty and functional.

  63. This was amazing. I needed this! I have been trying to figure out how to teach my son how to be more mindful. He is very emotional and feels all the feelings and I want to teach him mindfulness so he can learn to control his emotions in a healthy way. Thanks!

  64. I love all the resources you shared to practice mindfulness + the fact that this is being added to school’s curriculum!

  65. Mindfulness is so important. I’ve already started it with my daughter.

  66. Thanks for this wonderful post. While I am aware of the benefits of mindfulness, I forget that this practice is good to share and teach to our kids. Will definitely apply these to my toddler 🙂

  67. Lisa, Casey, and Barrett Dog says:

    Mindfulness is so important. Thank you for this amazing post.

  68. I have been using mindful meditation for a while now and it helps me to stay focused.

  69. Thanks for sharing all these Mindfulness resources! This is really a big help!

  70. Rose Ann Sales says:

    Thank you for sharing this mindfulness practice with kids! I got love at first sight to the peaceful makers cards deck. I would surely buy that!

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