Make Waves With This Mindful Activity

Having fun and joyous moments with students is an important part of any class. This activity will ask your students to work together, practice being mindful, and have fun. Students will create waves, similar to the ones done by sports fans at a game, while paying attention to their peers, speed, and any sensations they feel.


Step 1

Tell students that they will be making a wave like they see in sporting events. As a group they will experiment with the wave and see what they notice. Let them know this activity is done sitting but can include standing.

Step 2

Ask students to start in a clockwise direction with with two slow waves only using their arms. The wave is complete when it returns to the beginning of the circle.

Step 3

Check in with students asking them what were some of the things they had to do to make sure the wave got around. Also ask them to report on any sensations they felt in their arms or anywhere in their body. Tell students you will now begin challenging them by asking them to change the speed of the wave.

Step 4

Have students start again and after awhile ask them to increase the speed of the wave as it travels around the circle. Explore how fast the wave travels and for how long it can go in this circle.

If the flow is interrupted by a student raising their hands too soon or late, simply restart the wave from the beginning. Remember that part of the fun is not getting it right and making mistakes.

You can also ask your students to switch directions, reversing the wave, or ask them to also stand when doing the wave for an added challenge.

Step 5

Make sure to end by debriefing with the class.  Ask your students what made this challenging or easy?  What were some thoughts or feelings they noticed as their turn to make the wave came? What are some of the ways they worked well together?

Make sure to remind your students that being mindful and working together is fun but also helpful in all areas of life.

Share with your community!

Try the Making Waves activity in your class. How did your students respond, and where they able to work together to make the waves go fast? Share with fellow teachers in your school or on social media with #mindfulschools.

Based on a lesson designed by Brian Upholz a graduate of the 2016 Year-Long Certification Program.

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