Scope have launched a fabulous and fun campaign this week: Mindful Monsters, to help encourage our little ones to be mindful. Mindfulness is all about being in the present, the now. It is really easy to do, look I will show you: take a deep breath and count to three, then breathe out again. That was you being in the present, thinking about your breathing. It’s something I have learnt at the age of 34, I am really pleased to hear that there is a push to encourage children to be more mindful.
Mindfulness to help calm children
Being aware of the things around you, in that moment, is a great way of de-stressing and being actively calm. I find it really helps with little Noah as he can be quite angry, sometimes explosive and I have started practising breathing exercises with him to try and get him to calm down. I get him to do 5 deep breaths and sometimes we count with them too, up to 3 for each breath. It doesn’t help all of the time as sometimes he is so angry that a cuddle just relaxes him, but it is a great technique to offer a distraction and a chance to calm down. This is a useful technique that will help Noah when he gets older too.
Playing Mindful Monsters
It is a really easy concept, you take a card which has an activity on it and then talk it through with the children. We had a pack full of fun activities in 4 categories: Relaxtion, Creativity, Concentration and Positivity. I used the stickers as rewards if they did a good job of their activity and that was really well received. Getting out in the fresh air is a great way of creating a happier mood, so we took our gardens out into the garden.
Our activities from the cards are below, can you match up the photos to the activity?
- Pretend to be raw noodles, straight and long, and then cooked noodles, tangled and bendy.
- They had to pretend they were holding something really hot, acting out what they would do. This was funny, Isla’s face was so expressive and Noah really did look like he was holding something hot.
- Find something new in the garden, something that they hadn’t noticed before. Isla found a snail, she was amazed.
- Say something nice to each other, this was such a cute activity and so simple an idea. They both told each other they were beautiful/handsome and gave each other a huge smile.
- They had to balance on one leg with their hands above their head. I asked them to do it and count to 20, they made it all the way to 40.
- Pull a monster face – they found this rather easy!
- Reflect back on the day and pick their favourite part. This was great, they sat together on the picnic bench thinking about the day and then we talked about their favourite bits.
Watch the video
You can see the lovely video below, I would love to know what you think about the idea or have you played it. It is such a great activity and the children loved pretending to be wiggly noodles or looking for new things around the garden!