Activity

Live in The Moment With Mindful Walking

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What You Need:

What You Do:

  1. Share with students that they are going to practice an activity called "mindful walking" (this can be done in a circle a classroom or outdoors) to help connect with their bodies and get into the present.
  2. Explain that they will coordinate each step with their breath. Breathing in, they should feel one foot lift up and gentle take a step forward. Breathing out, they should feel their other foot move to meet the first. Walking slowly, they will gently guide their attention to their breath and steps if their mind wanders.
  3. Ask students to come up with a positive word to silently say to themselves as they walk, ex. "peace," "joy," "happiness," etc.
  4. If you are outside invite students to take notice of the beauty that surrounds them like the trees, flowers, or clouds. Even if you teach in a city, try and have students notice the sights and sounds of the outdoors.
  5. As students walk, have them move their attention gradually up their body, concentrating on how each feels as they move (legs, arms, knees, ankles etc.)
  6. Optional: use a small bell to signal when students should start to walk mindfully and when they stop. 
  7. Ask students to complete the reflection questions on the Mindful Walking worksheet.

Meena Srinivasan, MA, National Board Certified Teacher, is a leader in the fields of Mindful Awareness Practices (MAP) and Social and Emotional Learning (SEL). She is the author of Teach, Breathe, Learn: Mindfulness In and Out of the Classroom (Parallax Press, 2014) and SEL Everyday: Integrating Social and Emotional Learning With Instruction in Secondary Classrooms (Norton, 2019).

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