Mindfulness Activities

Summertime Mindfulness Activities

anonymous person in green grass with mirror
Photo by Gelatin on Pexels.com

Summertime is a great time to help your kids learn how to practice mindfulness. There are so many fun summertime mindfulness activities that you and your family can do together! In this post, I will show you how to create summertime vision boards and how to make calming mindful glitter jars. You will also learn how easy it is to teach your children about being mindful through reading and playing fun outdoor games, like my mindful scavenger hunt. Teaching our children about mindfulness will provide them with simple ways to de-stress and calm down when they get upset. Let’s begin and I promise you that your kids will love these fun summertime mindfulness activities!

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Summertime Mindfulness Activity: Vision Board

Vision boards are one of my most favorite activities to do with adults and kids. This activity inspires hope, imagination and positive goal setting. You can also incorporate mindfulness into this activity by simply being in the here and now. Begin by teaching your children to focus directly on the activity instead of worrying about another task. In other words when we teach ourselves and then in turn our children how to take a moment to breath and be present, then we naturally learn how to de-stress.

How to Create a Summertime Vision Board:

  • Step 1: Discuss with your kids what they want to do this summer (similar to a summertime bucket list).
  • Step 2: Have you kids cut out images and words out of magazines (or print pictures from your computer) of activities that they love and are inspired by. Images that help them create summertime goals. For example if you talked about swimming, find an image of a pool or the ocean.
  • Step 3: Design your vision board. Choose where to put all of the images. Be creative and have fun!
  • Step 4: Have your child present their vision board to you and your family. Ask questions and talk about their goals, inspirations and plans.

Summertime Mindfulness Activity: Glitter Jars

Mindful glitter jars are mesmerizing and kids love making them! To make this activity mindful, explain to your children that our emotions and thoughts are just like the glitter. When we are feeling overwhelmed and stressed our mind looks like the glitter when it is all stirred up and shaken around in the glitter jar. However, when we take a mindful breath we begin to feel grounded. Just like when we put the jar down and let it settle, our thoughts begin to settle with mindful breathing.

Shopping List

  • 1 Glass Jar or Plastic Bottle with a lid
[12 Pack] Large Clear Plastic Jars with Lids BPA Free, 32 Oz & 16 Oz Airtight Empty Plastic Storage Containers with Lids Labels Kitchen & Pantry use
  • Glitter
School Smart Craft Glitter, 2 Ounce Jar, Sliver
  • Optional Glitter Kit (different sizes and shapes glitter)
Hemway 54 Glitter Tube Craft Box (0.34oz/9.6g) All-Purpose Ultrafine Glitter for Arts and Crafts, DIY Scrapbooks, Slime, Epoxy Resin, Kids Schools, Cosmetic, Nail Design, Vegan Friendly Shaker Tubes
  • Clear Glue
Elmer’s Liquid School Glue, Clear, Washable, 9 Ounces, 1 Count Pack of 2

Directions

  • Add 1/4 cup of distilled water to any type of jar or water bottle
  • Then add in your clear glue. Start with 1/4 cup (once you make a few jars you can decide to add more. The more you add the slower the glitter will settle when shaken).
  • Swish the glue around in the glitter slowly – do not shake (this will create bubbles)
  • Now fill your jar or bottle with more water – to the top of the jar or bottle
  • Add your glitter – any color or colors. Have fun!
  • I would recommend you glue the lid on when you are done so it does open or spill when shaken.

Summertime Mindfulness Activity: Reading

Reading is a great winding down summertime activity! Reading can simply be a mindful activity all on it’s own or you can make it a fun family activity by creating a mindful reading summer basket! The goal for any mindfulness activity is to focus on the here and now. Reading a book provides your mind with an opportunity to escape from planning and worrying. With reading you get to slow down, cozy up and get lost in a good book! However if you are looking for books specifically on mindfulness here are some of my favorite:

  • #1 – Great mindfulness book for younger children
I Am Peace: A Book of Mindfulness (I Am Books)
  • #2 – Also great for little kids
A Handful of Quiet: Happiness in Four Pebbles
  • #3 – Wonderful book for teenagers!
Superpowered: Transform Anxiety into Courage, Confidence, and Resilience
  • #4 – Interactive growth mindset book for children ages 6-12
Happy Mindset Little Journal: Kids Interactive Journal Prompts and Daily Activities to Help Children Develop a Growth Mindset. Colorful, Self-Learning and Fun! (Ages 6-12)
  • #5 – Interactive growth mindset book for teens
Big Life Journal – Teen Edition: A Growth Mindset Journal – Interactive Journal for Teens with Writing Prompts – Journal for Teens & Tweens – Inspirational Goal Planner Guided Journal

Summertime Mindfulness Activity: Outdoor Scavenger Hunt

Get outside this summer and let your kids be simply mindful in nature! Here is a great summertime mindfulness activity for the whole family! Go on a mindful scavenger hunt with your kids and show your kids how to use their 5 senses to feel grounded and calm outdoors.

Bonus: Summer Round Up – 20 Education Activities for Kids

Check out this post from Growing Dawn for 20 simple, fun and educational summer activities for your kids. I promise you that your kids will have no time to be bored this summer with these great activities!

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Mindfulness Activities

How to Take a Mindful Break

Taking a mindful break throughout the day is so important. For many of us though, we often do not build in any time to take a mindful break. Building in time for a mindful break into your day is as important as making time to eat. It can also be as quick as 10 minutes! Giving yourself 10 minutes to do a quick mindfulness activity will overall decrease your stress over time and increase feelings of happiness and purpose.

Step 1:

Decide what part of your day is the best time to build in a mindful break. Maybe in the morning before your work day begins. For others it may be at the end of the day or simply during your lunch break.

Step 2:

Choose a mindful activity. Types of mindful activities include: yoga, meditations, reading, taking a walk outdoors or simply taking your lunch break outside. The key though for any of the activities that you choose is to be present and in the here and now. So, turn off your phone. Put aside that “to-do” list. I promise you that your phone and all of your “to-do’s” will still be there in 10 minutes. Check out my pin below with ideas to choose from for your mindful activity:

There are so many great free resources on YouTube for 5 minute guided meditations, simple chair yoga stretches and 10 minute guided body scans. Another site that I love for guided meditations and body scans is Calm.com. You can choose from 3 minute to 30 minute mindful exercise’s. (I am not affiliated with Calm.com, just truly love this resource).

Step 3:

Focus your attention solely on the mindful activity that you choose. Let yourself enjoy 10 minutes of un-interrupted time to unwind and destress.

Step 4:

Make this a routine. Build in time regularly into your schedule for a mindful break. Once this becomes part of your routine, it will then become a habit. By creating a positive habit, your body will automatically know what to do the next time you are stressed or overwhelmed.

Mindfulness Activities

How to Practice Mindfulness Outdoors

Fern plant with outdoor dried leaves

Incorporating mindfulness into everyday outdoor activities will help you de-stress and enjoy life more. Learning how to practice mindfulness outdoors can be so fun and simple. So how do you begin? First you start living in the here and now. In other words, being mindful simply means that you are focusing on the present moment.

Take a Mindful Walk

One way to incorporate mindfulness into your everyday outdoor actives is to take a mindful walk. As you begin your walk, begin to focus your attention solely on the walk and being outdoors. Take a deep breath and notice what you smell. Maybe you simply smell fresh air, or the scent of a blooming flower and if you are walking in a city, maybe you can smell food from nearby restaurants. No matter what you smell, take a moment to acknowledge your sense of smell with a deep breath. Second, with your next breath take note of something you can see. Focus on that object and take a mindful breath.

As you take your next mindful breath, close your eyes and focus your attention on something you can hear. Let all of your attention go to the sound you hear and take another mindful breath. As you continue your walk take note of being in the present moment with your breaths. You are not thinking about all the things you need to do or looking on your phone. Instead you are living in the PRESENT moment by only thinking about what you can hear, see and smell on your mindful walk.

outdoor walking trail in the lush woods
The trails in our backyard

If you are walking with your kids, talk about what you hear, smell and see as you walk together. This will help teach your children about being mindful outdoors. The incredible thing about children, is that they are naturals at being mindful. We are just there to help guide them in understanding how being mindful can help them calm down when they are worried or nervous.

Go on a Mindful Scavenger Hunt

A fun activity that teaches children how to be mindful when outdoors, is to go on a mindful scavenger hunt. This is an activity that you have probably played before, either with your children or as a child yourself, but maybe did not realize that this is a perfect way to teach your kids how to be mindful. When you really think about it, scavenger hunts are all about focusing your attention on finding objects and therefore being fully present in the here and now.

Snag your FREE simply mindful scavenger hunt printable below by adding your email to the link.

Practice Mindfulness Outdoors: Mindful Gardening

Mindful gardening is another way to incorporate mindfulness into an activity you already do outdoors. To begin, when you are planting or weeding in your garden, notice how the soil and plants feel. Then take a mindful breath and only think about what you can feel through your sense of touch. Second begin to notice all of the smells around you. Take another mindful breath as you focus on all of these outdoor scents.

outdoors picture featuring lavender plants, blue water bowel and green trees

One trick I always use to bring myself back to the present moment is to focus on my 5 senses. For example, as you begin to notice objects you see, take a mindful breath. Then as you focus in on sounds you can hear, take another breath. Continue to take mindful breaths as you engage all of your senses. I promise you will begin to feel calmer and more grounded.

Mindfulness Activities

How to Create a Relaxing Bedtime Routine

Creating a relaxing bedtime routine is as important as our morning, school or work routines. Routines create good habits and help us maintain skills we need throughout the day and sometimes in life in general. When you do something consistently, it then makes it easier to do even when you are upset, anxious or worried.

So what does your typical bedtime routine look like? An adult bedtime routine may be very different than the routine we put into place for our children. However, there are some aspects of both routines that can be accomplished together as a family. In my house we typically end the night by reading a bedtime story.

Add Mindful Meditation into the Bedtime Routine

However, have you ever thought about including a brief meditation with your kid(s) before they go to sleep? Reading a bedtime story can be very relaxing and enjoyable. You do not need to give this up, instead you can simply add a mindful mediation into your established routine. Teaching our kid(s) how to wind down is so important and learning about mindfulness and meditation is the perfect way to do this.

Sometimes right before you go to sleep, you may begin to worry about the next day. Maybe you find it hard to go to sleep or stay asleep. This is because as soon as we begin to attempt to go to sleep, that is when our brain quiets down for the day. With this, some of us may experience anxiety because our mind is no longer actively engaging in all of the tasks it was busy doing during the day. This is also a time that our kids can begin to feel a sense of anxiety too, but they may not have the words to express this yet. You may hear them say instead “my belly hurts” or “I can’t go to sleep.”

Relaxing Bedtime Routine with Meditation

One way to help with bedtime worries is to practice a short meditation every night. When you make this a routine, you begin to teach your body how to feel calm instead of worried. Then when you are worried, you will already know what to do.

There are so many great meditations available on the internet, but one site that I really love to use is calm.com. I love how this site has many different types of meditations to choose from. (I am not affiliated with this site, nor receive any compensation, I just truly love it). You can do a 2 minute meditation or a 10 minute mediation. No matter how long you choose to mediate before bed, make this a family activity. Do this together with your kids before bed and you will find that this is a perfect addition to your current bedtime routine.

Relaxing Bedtime Route with a 5 Senses Exercise

And for those nights that the whole bedtime routine is not possible, you can try to do a calming activity before bed instead, such as a mindful grounding exercise. One that I love is the 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 exercise. You begin by getting in a comfortable position and then you focus on 5 things you can see. With each one take a deep breath in between. Then you notice 4 things you can hear, 3 things you can feel, 2 things you can smell and finally 1 thing you can taste. Bringing your awareness to your senses, helps you to feel grounded and calmer. With teaching your children about grounding, it will provide them with a way to be more present and in the moment. This is all part of mindfulness and being simply mindful.

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