CoverIntroductionWellbeing and Its Importance in SchoolsWhat frameworks exist to promote school wellbeing?What is the best approach for my school/district?Valuable Tools and ConsiderationYour Call to ActionStudent Wellbeing InterventionsPositive Emotion Three Good ThingsCounting BlessingsEnvisioning Your Best Possible SelfUnderstanding HumorThree Funny ThingsOutdoor LearningBringing the Outside InBibliotherapyEngagementRecognizing and Utilizing Personal StrengthsARCS Model of CuriosityCarousel BrainstormingGenius HourPerspective Taking and Role-PlayArts IntegrationDrawing and Coloring TherapyCulturally-Enriching and Arts-Based Field TripsCulturally Responsive PracticesSocial Belonging InterventionEmotional Self-Regulation: RULER methodModeling Emotional Self-Regulation SkillsTeacher PraiseRelationshipsModeling Love, Kindness and ForgivenessActive Constructive RespondingDialogue JournalsSecret Strengths SpottingPeer Praise NotesActs of KindnessVolunteeringFast FriendsBuddy BenchMeaningEducating Students about Benefit AppraisalsGratitude LettersSavoring StrategiesTaking in the Good (HEAL)Mental Time TravelBrief Mindfulness ActivitiesMindful BellMindful BreathingBody Scan RelaxationMindful Walking/MovementFive Senses MindfulnessMindful PhotographyMindful Self-CompassionAccomplishmentFuture Thinking & When/Where PlansHope MapG-POWER Goal SettingEmbedded Self-Regulation StrategiesGrowth MindsetGrit and Deliberate PracticeDeveloping Students' Resilience and Coping SkillsHealth and VitalityHealthy Sleep HabitsClassroom Physical ActivityYogaCreative Playground EquipmentHealthy Body Image InterventionStudent-Led Health ProgramSchool-Led Interventions for Teachers and StaffSupporting Teacher AutonomyMindfulness TrainingCompassion TrainingHumor TrainingIncentivizing Physical ExerciseIndividual Interventions for School EmployeesPositive and Reflective JournalingSelf-Regulation and Coping StrategiesSelf-AffirmationSelf Compassion LetterDiscovering and Utilizing Character StrengthsJob CraftingMindfulnessAdditional Interventions to ConsiderDedicated Wellbeing SpacesIndividual Wellbeing Plans for School EmployeesOther ResourcesPROSPER
Addressing Wellbeing In Schools

Body Scan Relaxation

The body scan mindfulness activity focuses student attention on their bodies and any tension or other sensations they feel. This activity is traditionally done sitting or lying down. Through a guided meditation recording, or teacher prompting, students focus on each part of the body (such as feet, legs, torso, heart, arms, hands, etc.)  while taking note of what they feel and releasing any tension. The Mental Health Teacher (2022) has put together the following guided video to help young students with the body scan meditation practice, or you may use the additional guided meditations linked  in the materials section below.

Image preview of a YouTube video about the body scan meditation
Watch on YouTube

Grade Level: All
Materials: None needed, but you may consider using a body scan meditation recording such as the one found here.
Duration: 5 minutes daily or as needed

If you decide not to use a recording, prompt your students with the following instructions:

  1. Have students find a comfortable seated position and encourage them to close their eyes if they feel comfortable doing so.
  2. Invite students to notice the feel of the chair they are sitting on while taking slow, deep breaths.
  3. As students breathe, invite them to focus on relaxing while they exhale.
  4. Bring students’ attention to the sensation of their feet on the floor, followed by their legs. Have them recognize any tension and focus on releasing it. 
  5. Repeat this exercise with the back, stomach, arms, hands, neck/throat, and head.
  6. Have students notice the sensations of their whole body and their sense of relaxation and freedom from tension.
  7. When students are ready, have students open their eyes and return their attention to the class.

Greater Good Science Center. (n.d.). Body scan meditation. 

Shankland, R., & Rosset, E. (2017) Review of brief school-based positive psychological intervention: a taster for teachers and educators. Educational Psychology Review, 29, 363-392. 

The Mental Health Teacher. (2022, February 27). The body scanner! Mindfulness for children [Video]. YouTube. 


CC BY-NC: This work is released under a CC BY-NC license, which means that you are free to do with it as you please as long as you (1) properly attribute it and (2) do not use it for commercial gain.

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