Want to get your child to attend and focus? Here are four simple activities that help to stimulate areas in the brain necessary for full body awareness and regulation. Try them out and tell us if they helped
- ATTENTION – LOG ROLLS
Have your child drop to the floor and perform a log roll. Arms overhead hugging the ears, and legs straight. Roll back and forth for 30 seconds with eyes open and 30 seconds with eyes closed.
This movement works the vestibular system, waking up the mind and body to the surroundings and the next task at hand.
2. ATTENTION – CROSS CRAWL
Have your child sit or stand (depending on their balance). They will reach the right elbow and tap the left knee as the leg lifts from the ground. Then perform the opposite – left elbow towards right knee. March back and forth, crossing arms & legs for 30 seconds. * Bonus * perform this movement to a song with a beat between 60-80 bpm.
The cross crawl ignites the corpus callosum, the part of the brain that connects the right and left hemispheres. Working both sides of the brain helps to bring focus and attention to the task and prepares the brain for learning.
3. FOCUS – BALANCE
Have your child stand on one leg with eyes open for 30 seconds, and eyes closed for 30 seconds. * Bonus * work on a balance pad or balance beam if you have one.
Balancing brings focus to all motor and sensory systems in the body. It works the vestibular system, visual, and auditory; while the muscular system creates adjustments in the core and legs to maintain stability.
4. FOCUS – ELEPHANT BREATH
Have your child sit or stand comfortably. They will reach their arms straight in front with one arm crossed over the other, palms facing one another. Interlace the fingers and bring the grasped hands toward the chest/heart by bending the elbows. Take 4 deep breaths in the nose, out the mouth. They may close their eyes if desired.
Elephant Breath brings focus inward to calm the child, and prepare their body and mind for work.