Mindfulness for Little Sprouts: Fun and Simple Practices for Ages 4-7

May 8, 2024by steve rowley

Mindfulness for Little Sprouts: Fun and Simple Practices for Ages 4-7

Children are naturally curious and full of energy, but sometimes their busy minds can lead to meltdowns or difficulty focusing. Mindfulness practices can be a wonderful tool to help young children develop emotional awareness, self-regulation, and a sense of calm.

Here are some fun and engaging mindfulness activities perfect for kids between the ages of 4 and 7:

1. The Breathing Buddy Adventure:

    • What you need: A small stuffed animal or toy (their "breathing buddy")
    • Instructions: Have your child choose a soft toy to be their "breathing buddy." Sit comfortably together and explain that you're going on a breathing adventure. Ask them to place their breathing buddy on their belly and feel it rise and fall with each breath. Count breaths together slowly (in for 3, out for 3) for a few minutes.
    • Benefits: This simple exercise helps children connect with their physical sensations and teaches them to focus on their breath as a way to calm down.

2. The Senses Scavenger Hunt:

    • What you need: None!
    • Instructions: Take your child on a mindfulness scavenger hunt around the house or outdoors. Challenge them to find something that feels soft, something that smells sweet, something that sounds crunchy, and something that looks bright. Once they find each item, encourage them to describe it using their senses.
    • Benefits: This activity helps children become more aware of their surroundings and appreciate the world through their senses.

3. The Glitter Jar Calming Down Tool:

    • What you need: A clear jar, water, glitter, glue (optional)
    • Instructions: Fill a jar ¾ of the way with water. Add a generous amount of glitter and a few drops of food coloring (optional). Secure the lid tightly (you can glue it on for younger children). When your child is feeling overwhelmed, shake the jar and watch the glitter swirl. Explain that their mind can be like the jar sometimes, with lots of thoughts swirling around. Just like the glitter eventually settles, their thoughts will too.
    • Benefits: This calming tool provides a visual reminder for children to take deep breaths and wait for their emotions to settle.

4. The Mindful Movement Minute:

    • What you need: Some open space!
    • Instructions: Put on some fun music and encourage your child to move their body in any way they feel like. They can jump, wiggle, stomp, or twirl – the focus is on being present in the moment and feeling the sensations of their body moving. After a minute, stop the music and have them stand tall, taking a few deep breaths.
    • Benefits: This energetic activity allows children to release pent-up energy and practice mindfulness by focusing on their body's movement.

5. The Gratitude Garden:

    • What you need: Paper, crayons, scissors, and a jar or container
    • Instructions: Help your child cut out several flower shapes from paper. Have them decorate the flowers and then write or draw something they are grateful for on each one. They can be thankful for anything – their family, their pet, a favorite toy, etc. Once finished, place them all in a jar or container, creating their own little "gratitude garden."
    • Benefits: Cultivating gratitude is a powerful mindfulness practice. This activity helps children appreciate the good things in their lives and promotes positive emotions.


    • Keep it short and sweet! Attention spans for young children are short, so aim for activities that last 2-5 minutes.
    • Make it fun! Use playful language, silly voices, and positive reinforcement to keep your child engaged.
    • Practice together! Mindfulness is a skill that needs practice, so model mindful behaviors and participate in the activities with your child.

By incorporating these playful mindfulness exercises into your daily routine, you can help your little one develop the tools they need to navigate their emotions, manage stress, and appreciate the present moment.

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