Learning Through Relationships

OT Activities For Home (Feb. 2019)

As we reach the middle of winter, the OT department wanted to share some fun activities that promote deep breathing! Oftentimes, your child may be taking quick, short breaths because the environment is too exciting or scary for him or her. Taking deep breaths can help us feel calm and relaxed. A deep breath starts by inhaling through the nose to and ends by exhaling through the mouth. Think of the body as a balloon. As we take a big inhale, the belly and chest grow bigger. Once we exhale, the belly and chest become smaller.

Here are some activities that will encourage your child to take deep breaths!

Blow Bubbles

 

Blowing bubbles is a great way to encourage your child to breathe deeply. Take turns blowing bubbles with your child on your bellies. To make bigger bubbles, it requires deeper breathing. Try to see who can make the biggest bubble!

Snowball Straw Races

Have a race with your child using a drinking straw and a cotton ball. Lay on your bellies and bring the straws to your mouths. Take a big inhale through the nose and exhale into the straw and see how far the cotton ball can move.

  • See who can move the cotton ball the farthest with one big deep breath!
  • Have a start and finish line. See who can reach the finish line first!

Breathing with a Buddy

Have your child grab his or her favorite stuffed animal and lay on his or her back. Place the stuffed animal on his or her stomach. Start by having your child inhale through his or her nose for the count of 3. During the inhale, have your child notice his or her belly getting bigger and the stuffed animal move up. Afterwards, encourage your child to slowly exhale to the count of 3 and to watch his or her belly get smaller and the stuffed animal moving down. Stay in control of the breath, don’t let the stuffed animal fall off!

Painting with a Straw

*Be sure to complete this activity under adult supervision!!!

There are so many different ways that we can use paint! In three easy steps, you and your child can create beautiful pictures!

You will need: paper, watered down paint (watercolors or watered down food coloring), a dropper, a drinking straw, and a tray.

Let’s Start Painting

  1. Place paper on the tray
  2. Using the dropper, drop the paint onto the paper
  3. Blow through the straw to move the colors around

Repeat with as many colors until finished

Sing Together

Singing is a great way to promote deep breathing! Holding notes like “ah” or “la” for a longer time requires a big deep breath. Sing your child’s favorite song with him or her and see how long you both can hold the last note. Or take a big inhale at the same time and try see who can hold “ah” or “la” longer!

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