We can hardly believe that May is almost here! The kids are only just back from Easter and May half term is just four weeks away! How did that happen? But before we get to half term, many of our kids have to tackle the dreaded SATS. If you have a child in year 2 or year 6, then you will be gearing up for this as we speak, and may already be dealing with an anxious child. As a team of mums ourselves we know that exam month can be tough on the whole family. Kids often put a lot of pressure on themselves, and they can become very anxious during this period. With this in mind, we wanted to compile a list of 10 super fun activities that you can practice when your kid needs to de-stress. So without further ado.
MAKE A BRAIN POWER SMOOTHIE
Making a smoothie is a fun way to start the day, and get lots of good stuff in before school. You can tell the kids that the smoothies are magic and they will help them focus and stay calm! You can ask them to make their own creation, or you can pick from some wonderful recipes on the BBC good food website here.
WRITE DOWN WORRIES
A fun way to help your kids let go of their worries is to write them all down on “post-it” notes. You can even write your worries down to reassure your child that you also have times that you feel worried an anxious. Once they have written their fears down take some time to discuss them before letting them go. Letting them go could involve scrunching them up and throwing them in a bin, or it could mean cutting them up and making a happy picture out of them. Go wild and be a little creative!
Yoga can be hugely beneficial for kids when practised correctly. Yoga can help boost mood, regulate breathing and promotes mindfulness. You may find that your local town offers kids yoga sessions, but if they don’t, there are lots of resources available online. Cosmic Kids offer yoga tutorials on their youtube channel. For more information click here.
GO ON A SCAVENGER HUNT
Did you know that exploring nature helps to reduce anger, fear and stress? It also reduces blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension and the production of stress hormones. Going on a scavenger hunt is a fun way to get outdoors, divert brain power and enjoy some fresh air. You can make your own scavenger hunt, or you can check out some of the fabulous ideas on Pinterest.
SING AND DANCE IN THE KITCHEN
Go wild, sing your heart out and dance like no ones watching. We know as adults that this can be such a stress reliever. So make the kids cringe and get them to dance along with you. The question is, which song will you choose?
Kids love bubbles. If we are totally honest, us adults love them too! But did you know that the real action of blowing bubbles can be very relieving for anxious kids? The act of blowing bubbles forces them to stop what they are doing and focus on their breathing. They can also visualise that they are blowing their worries away while they are doing it.
MAKE A CALM DOWN JAR
Calm down jars are a great way to help relax children who are stressed out. They will love making these jars full of glitter! Once created, they can watch the glitter swirling around, and it should, in theory, help calm them down. We love these calm down jar ideas from Good to know.
MAKE YOUR OWN STRESS BALL
Stress Balls have a very similar effect to the calm down jars in that a stress ball helps relieve anxiety by merely playing with it. You can buy stress balls on the high street, but it’s great fun to make them at home too. We love this easy idea from Red Ted Art.
TEST THE PARENTS
Another fun way to help your kids unwind is to let them be the teacher. By doing this, you are giving them some control when they feel like they might not have any. Simply ask them to make a test for you. They can make it as easy, hard, or as silly as they like. This will be sure to make them giggle! You had better get swatting up before you suggest this one 😉
BUILD A DEN
Building a den is always a fun way to spend a morning or an afternoon. If you live near woodland then why not go and forage for logs and sticks and spend some time making a den with the kids? If you want to stay at home, then make one with furniture and things around the house. Building a den is another fun way to help divert their attention away from stress and expectations.
PLAN SOMETHING FUN
Last but definitely not least plan something super fun for them to look forward to when their tests are over. You could even make a countdown sign so that they can help count down the days until their special treat.
We hope that these ideas help calm your kids during this testing period. We know that stress doesn’t just come during the exam month. Kids can get overwhelmed by all kinds of all things, so be sure to keep these tips on hand. We would love to know how you help your kids combat stress? Join the conversation in the comments below or via our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages.
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