Mindfulness Activities

Bring MindfulnessInto the Home

McLean School’s Mindfulness practice is integrated in all that we do. In addition to structured lessons, our Mindfulness Program helps focus attention on the foundational principles of the practice such as gratitude, positive thinking, and empathy.

But we don’t just talk about it — students are accessing these skills every day, from the playing field to test preparation. It’s all part of our commitment to the whole child — because we believe there’s more to a great education than rich academics alone.

Mindfulness helps students tap into who they are and what they need. In the short run, it creates a feeling of ‘I got this.’ In the long term, it develops competence, strength, and resilience.

You can engage in Mindfulness within any space. This DIY Glitter Jar is a great project to start with at home!

Watch the following video to follow along. You’ll need:

A Bottle • Glitter • Glitter Glue • Clear Glue • Hot Water

Find more activities below the video!


Mindful Coloring

Purpose: A creative activity that can have a calming and relaxing effect.

A designated space with soft lighting, calming music, and device free promotes a calming experience. Mindful coloring books, pages, and sheets (Mandalas) are readily available to order online for delivery.

Gratitude Rocks

Purpose: Develop an awareness and appreciation of the good in our lives by decorating a rock and using it as a means of focusing on the good.

1. As a family or group, explore the outdoors and collect rocks from your backyard, wooded area, or park; these can be any size but a larger rock could represent the “Family Rock.”
2. Clean and dry the rocks.
3. Personalize the rocks by painting them, writing positive words or messages on them, or covering them with stickers or foil.
4. Create a “gratitude rock garden,” put a rock in a frequently visited area, give a rock as a “thank you” gift or “thinking of you” memento.

Breathing Buddies

Purpose: Provide an opportunity to focus on the breath and to increase awareness of emotions.

1. While lying down on your back, place a stuffed animal on your tummy and hold with both hands.
2. Close your eyes and begin inhaling and exhaling.
3. Focus attention on the movement of the breathing buddy as it rises and falls with each breath.

Variations include:

Pretend you are smelling a flower (inhale, take in breath), blowing out a candle (exhale, release breath).

Pretend your belly is a balloon: breath in to inflate it, breath out to deflate it.

Count up to 5 as you breath in, count backwards from 5 as you breath out.

Mindful Walking

Purpose: To clear your mind and lower your stress by focusing on the experience of walking while observing your surroundings.

1. Look up and notice the sky (cloud shape, color, size, moon, sun).
2. Listen to sounds in nature (wind, birds, leaves, movement of animals).
3. Feel the temperature of the air and how it moves around you.
4. Choose an object of interest, pick it up and observe the shape, size, texture, and color.

Finding the Good

Purpose: To increase empathy and self-esteem through awareness of positive experiences.

Individually or with family members take the time to focus on the good things, people or experiences that are happening in your daily life.

1. “Find the Good” in each day and record it in a journal.
2. Share a positive thought or feeling about a family member at the start of a meal.
3. Identify and share gratitude for members in your community that are keeping you safe.
4. Create “Thinking of You” Cards for those isolated from friends and family.
5. Set weekly goals for showing kindness and gratitude.