My Magic Breath
Free lesson plan, writing template and printable word-search puzzles for kids
Best suited to:
K – Year 1
English, PDH (emotion regulation)
- when we feel sad, scared, mad or worried there are things we can do to help ourselves feel calm;
- we can use our breath to help us pay attention to and appreciate the good things and feelings in our lives;
- practising mindful breathing calms our nervous system;
Need to know:
- this book is an introduction for young children to mindful breathing;
- describes the magic of taking a deep breath and blowing it out to help us relax;
- helps children understand that ‘tricky’ emotions like worry and sadness are normal and ok;
- the last pages mentioning clearing the mind ready for sleep but this book is also good to share with children at the end of the school day;
- very simple text and bright, appealing illustrations;
Discussion Questions (before reading):
- what do you think this book might be about?
- ask the children if they have ever done any mindful breathing;
- write these words on the class whiteboard and read them to the children: breath, breathe, breathing;
- ask the children how we breathe and what happens when we breathe;
- tell the children we can breathe through our mouths and through our noses. Demonstrate each one and ask the children to do it too;
- tell the children that we’re going to put our hands on our tummies, breathe through our noses and take a deep breath, seeing if we can fill our lungs up with air right down to the bottom (we might see and feel our hands move). Then we’re going to blow that breath out slowly and for a long time until our lungs are completely empty (do this together);
- this book asks children to take a deep breath and blow it out slowly on various pages. Do this together whenever it’s indicated;
- the book also asks children to think of something that made them feel sad or mad or happy. Model doing this when you’re reading the relevant pages and ask the children to do it too;
Discussion Questions (after reading):
- lead a discussion about how the children felt after the breathing activities. Accept any answers, including ‘I felt nothing’;
- tell the children that scientists have found that it’s true that mindful breathing like they have just done can help them calm their brains and bodies when they feel angry, scared or worried;
- tell the children that they can practise mindful breathing with their magic breath whenever and wherever they need or want to;
- invite the children to tell the class when they think they might use their magic breath at home or at school;
- as a class, practise mindful breathing for a minute or two throughout the day. You can do 3 breaths, 5 breaths, 10 breaths or one minute of magic/mindful breathing in the morning, after recess and lunch and before going home;
- children can write and illustrate a reflection about mindful breathing and/or about the book. How does mindful breathing feel? How might it help me? When could I practise it?
- children can draw their favourite part of the book and write about it;
- if you have time to prepare, you can make up a batch of bubble mixture or buy the small ones sold as party favours (about $10.00 for a pack of 24). Blowing bubbles helps children tune in to their breathing and practise blowing long, slow out-breaths;
- pinwheels are another good resource for practising breathing, if you have them;
Your free, printable word-search puzzles and writing template
These free, printable word-search puzzles for kids are great for building and reinforcing the vocabulary used when discussing My Magic Breath. They’re especially helpful for EAL/D students.
There are two different puzzles in this file to enable you to differentiate the activity according to the learning needs of your students.
Download and print our free writing template for use with the picture book My Magic Breath here (PDF).