Today, children are exposed to so many distractions in their daily lives, and it can be hard for them to stay focused on the task.
But research shows that how you approach helping your children develop mindfulness can make a huge difference in their future.
Below are a few excellent mindfulness questions for kids to help you get started.
What's in this post:
What is Mindfulness?
Mindfulness is being fully present and attentive to the moment at hand.
It involves paying attention to your thoughts and feelings without judging them or getting upset about them. It’s as simple as that – but not so easy to accomplish.
The idea of mindfulness has existed for thousands of years. It was a Buddhist term to describe “present-moment awareness” and was initially introduced to Western culture in the 1970s by Jon Kabat-Zinn.
Zinn helped create the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center. MBSR uses mindfulness practices to help people cope with stress and illness.
People in all walks of life use mindfulness meditation to improve their well-being and health. Many schools have begun teaching mindfulness as part of their curriculum. How can you teach your children about it at home to support what they may learn at school?
How Do You Explain Mindfulness to a Child?
The best way to explain mindfulness to children is by giving examples they can relate to.
Sit next to your child and ask them to close their eyes and tell you what they experience.
- Is there music playing?
- Can you hear people talking?
- What do you feel in your body?
- Are there thoughts in your head? What are they?
Then tell them that this is what mindfulness is – being aware of the world around them and within them.
Explain that mindfulness is paying attention to what’s happening right now rather than thinking about what happened in the past or worrying about the future.
It’s also about being in touch with how we feel and being able to notice our thoughts and feelings without judging ourselves for having them.
Remember, when explaining things to kids:
- Explain things simply
- Use terms that kids understand
- Use examples they can relate to
- Come up with exercises to show them
- Watch mindfulness videos together
How do you get kids thinking about being in the present? What allows them to think about things and respond at a time when they are calm and relaxed?
We have compiled a list of 53 mindful questions you can ask kids to help them develop self-awareness.
53 Mindfulness Questions for Kids
1. What do you hear when you close your eyes?
2. What do you feel on your skin?
3. What do you smell right now?
4. What matters the most to you?
5. What makes you feel sad?
6. How can you be kind to yourself?
7. How can we be kind to others?
8. When was the last time that you were mad at someone?
9. When was the last time that someone was mad at you?
10. When was the last time that you felt anxious? Why did you feel anxious?
11. Can you remember what it feels like when someone is angry with you or says
something mean about you?
12. Can you think about three things that make you happy right now?
13. What emotions do you feel right now?
14. What are the things that make you happy?
15. What things do you do really well?
16. What was your favorite part of today?
17. What did you learn today?
18. How did you celebrate your accomplishments today?
19. What accomplishments are you most proud of?
20. What do you want to do when you grow up?
21. How can we be mindful when we’re feeling angry or sad?
22. How would you describe yourself without using words?
23. What three words best describe you?
24. How do you spend most of your time?
25. What do you love most about yourself?
26. What do you think mindfulness means?
27. When do you feel anxious (about school or other situations)?
28. How often do thoughts and emotions surface?
29. What are your favorite things about winter?
30. What do you like best about school?
31. What do you like most about summer?
32. What is the best thing that has ever happened to you?
33. How often do you feel grateful, happy, or proud of yourself?
34. When do these feelings arise, and what are they usually about?
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35. What does a tree feel like when you touch its bark?
36. What about when you touch grass or leaves — what do they feel like compared to a
37. Describe the taste of your favorite food.
38. What was the best thing you ate today?
39. What did you do for fun today?
40. What do you like about being alive?
41. What do you do when you get angry?
42. What makes you feel safe?
43. What does it feel like when someone smiles at you?
44. If you could be anywhere right now, where would it be?
45. Do you remember what it felt like when you were really little? How did you feel?
46. What is your favorite color?
47. What do you like most about your family?
48. What is your favorite animal or pet?
49. Did you ever get lost in a store or somewhere else when you were younger?
50. Do you like scary movies? If so, why do you like them?
51. What does it feel like when you’re happy?
52. What does it feel like when you’re bored?
53. How do you know when you’re hungry?
Why Does It Help to Ask Mindfulness Questions for Students?
Being present in the moment can help us be more aware of our bodies and surroundings, which helps us become more self-aware and less reactive in stressful situations (like when someone says something mean).
It also improves concentration skills — which means kids who practice mindfulness are better able to concentrate on their schoolwork!
Children are natural explorers, and they have a fantastic ability to focus. However, as they grow older and more distracted by the world around them, it can be difficult to maintain their focus.
Self-awareness can help children learn to be more present in their lives and connect with what’s happening around them.
Start Simply by Talking to Your Child
Ask mindful questions about your child’s day: If you are having a conversation with your child, ask questions like “What did you do today?” or “What was fun today?”
This encourages reflection on what happened during the day and allows them to think about their experiences rather than simply respond with “nothing” or “I don’t know” when asked how their day went.
You might even ask specific questions like “what did you have for dinner?” or “what did you do after school.
Incorporating mindfulness into your daily routine will it become second nature to you and your child. You can create a special time for the two of you and share your responses.