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Relaxation Activities for Children


We’re sharing our favorite healthy parenting tips and products to work through a relaxation routine with young children. Winding down is such an important part of the day for little bodies, but it can seem like the most daunting or hardest thing to do. Finding a routine that works for you can make this an easier everyday process. Revised in October 2022.

 

As parents, we know what it’s like to have a busy schedule. Finding time to get everything done in the day can seem impossible. Just like us, our kids can become overwhelmed with expectations and activities that are thrown at them each day. Practicing relaxation techniques and strategies with your child not only provides a sense of calm, but helps to manage reactions when negative feelings are present. Building activities that help young children relax after a busy day can help them wind down and can support an easier bedtime.

TAKE A MOMENT TO RELAX

Carve out some time at the end of the day for a mindfulness activity. Try some of these relaxation activities for kids:

  • Reading a book with positive language (or just looking at the pictures)
  • Drawing/Painting
  • Puzzles
  • Building with blocks or magnets
  • Playing with play-doh, putty, or moon sand
  • Sorting objects
  • Taking a bath
  • Listening to music

RELAXATION STRATEGIES

Teaching your child relaxation and calming strategies not only helps them with negative feelings (worried, sad, angry, etc.) when they arise, but also helps to calm a busy body. Here are some tips:

  • Read a Book: When it comes to our social emotional learning books, both the Slumber Sloth and Yeti are great resources that use research-based techniques to promote relaxation. You can download their stories and a free resource guide on our website
  • Focus on Breath: Sit with your young child and focus on slowing down your breathing. Paying attention to each breath allows little ones to calm their body and thoughts. You can find more tips on deep breathing exercises HERE.
  • Count Together: Use counting as a strategy to help your child calm down. Depending on your child’s age and counting skills, you can count to 3, 5, or 10. You can also try counting backward.
  • Visit KidsRelaxation.com: It’s full of quick and easy relaxation activity ideas
  • Use a Relaxation App: 
    • Mind Yeti: “The app teaches mindfulness and relaxation exercises using fun characters, stories, and sounds that help listeners calm down, focus, connect,  and sleep.”
    • Cosmic Kids Yoga: “Fun yoga poses and mindfulness videos for kids aged 3 to 9, presented by Jaime.  Kids love to follow Jaime as she goes on yoga adventures and explains mindfulness in ways that they really get.”
    • Headspace: “Headspace is a simple way to reframe stress. Sleep trouble? Guided meditation creates the ideal conditions for a good night's rest. Consider trying guided meditations and relaxation techniques that bring calm, wellness, and balance to your life in just a few minutes a day.”
    • Dreamy Kid: “The DreamyKid meditation app offers guided meditation, guided visualization, and affirmations for kids and teens. It uses proven techniques that teach your kids methods to guide them towards a happier life through mindfulness.”
    • Stop, Breathe & Think Kids: “Meditation and mindfulness made easy and fun for kids, to help them discover and develop their superpowers of sleep, being calm, learning to breathe or to resolve conflicts.”
    • GoNoodle: “GoNoodle provides dance-along, yoga videos, mindfulness activities, and other awesomely active and fun ways to move!”

Slumberkins is here to help you build connections with your little loved ones. From our books on connection to our cozy snugglers, there’s something for every family in our collection.
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Originally published in August 2018
Revised in October 2022