In a guided meditation, students focus individually on each part of their body.

Objectives

  1. Cognitive: Students will recognize that the body scan can affect emotions and focus.
  2. Affective: Students will practice a strategy to feel calm and relaxed.

Materials

soft meditative music (background)

Exercises

Time Activity Notes
2 min Explain that a body scan can help manage stress and bring awareness and connection to their body. This activity is a quick way of connecting the mind and the body. Remind students that there is no right or wrong way to experience this exercise, and encourage an open mind with a new exercise. Optional:  Elaborate further with science that makes the connection to lowering stress when increasing body awareness.
5 min Prompt students to sit comfortably in their chairs or lay on the floor. Ask them to start with their toes and move toward their head, imagining exactly how each body part feels, including how heavy it feels, how it pulses or moves, and how warm or cold it is.

Prompt students to take deep, rhythmic breaths and do their best to clear their minds. Students may close their eyes if they wish.

Say: When thoughts arise, simply acknowledge them and let them pass, returning your focus to the sensations of your own bodies.

Remind students regularly to allow their thoughts to pass and to maintain deep breathing.

Example Prompts

  • “Simply notice the sensations.”
  • “Avoid labeling, judging, liking or disking the things you notice. Just allow yourself to observe the sensations present.”
  • “Notice what you feel and where you feel it.”
3 min When students have focused on all parts of their body, end the exercise on a positive and affirming note such as “Notice the feeling of being connected to your body, of being alive. Take comfort in this moment.” Remind students they can take the feeling of being connected physically with them throughout their day. Optional: Conclude with well-known athletes, celebrities, politicians, etc. who utilize “relaxation” techniques.  Or conclude by asking students when they could imagine using this technique throughout the year at school or in their life (i.e., taking a test, writing a paper, playing sports, a recital etc).

 

Teacher Reflection

How did you feel after the activity? Did students participate and seem engaged? Remember to ask the students to share their feedback on the activity: What went well? What suggestions do they have for making the activity better? Think about what you might do differently next time.

Emotional Intelligence Tips

  • Meditation‐focused exercises can be a new experience for some students, who may need
    some time to acclimate. Allow students to go at their own pace. Don’t worry if students are restless, laugh, or wish not to close their eyes.
  • Encourage students to be patient and focused on their internal experience.
  • Encourage students to approach the exercise with curiosity.

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