There are so many deep breathing exercises you can do with kiddos. What works with some might not work with others, so it can be beneficial to provide a kiddo with multiple options so that they can find one that works for them.
The deep breaths are important, but assigning another task while taking deep breaths can also help get the child’s mind off whatever it is they are angry (and possibly ruminating) about. I’ve shared about TAKE 5 Breathing, but here’s another idea with tracing.
The idea is to have children trace basic geometric shapes, like a triangle, rectangle, or square, while they take deep breaths. This helps get them fully engaged with the deep breathing and can make it more effective. Here’s some examples of how to use a square and a star (note with the star, you’d have to trace it twice to get full breaths).
I usually have kiddos practice a few times with an actual shape in front of them, then have them trace it on a table without a template. They can also trace it in the air, on their leg, on the wall, etc.
A few times:
- Practice makes perfect!
- Remind kiddos to SLOW down – it’s not a race!