Surprisingly Helpful Calming Activities for Super-Active Kids

Having a super-active child can be both a joy and a challenge. Their boundless energy often needs an outlet, and finding activities that help them calm down can be crucial for their well-being and yours.

Here, we’ll explore various calming activities that can effectively help your active child settle down. We’ll break these activities into categories for easy navigation: creative activities, physical activities, mindfulness practises, nature-based activities, and routine-building strategies. Each section offers practical suggestions and tips to incorporate these activities into your child's daily life.

Creative Activities

Creativity is a powerful tool to channel the energy of an active child. Engaging in artistic and creative activities can help children focus, express their emotions, and find a sense of calm.

Drawing and Colouring

Drawing and colouring are excellent ways for children to relax and concentrate. Providing them with a variety of colouring books, blank paper, and a selection of crayons, markers, or coloured pencils can encourage them to create art.

  • Benefits: Enhances focus, fine motor skills, and emotional expression.
  • Tips: Create a dedicated art space with all the necessary supplies. Allow your child to choose what they want to draw or colour.

Crafting

Craft projects can be both fun and calming. Simple crafts like making friendship bracelets, cutting and pasting paper shapes, or creating models with clay can keep your child engaged and relaxed.

  • Benefits: Boosts creativity, fine motor skills, and patience.
  • Tips: Use easy-to-follow instructions and keep the materials organised to avoid frustration.

Puzzles and Building Blocks

Puzzles and building blocks are great for engaging the mind and promoting problem-solving skills. They require concentration and can be very absorbing.

  • Benefits: Enhances cognitive skills, patience, and focus.
  • Tips: Choose age-appropriate puzzles and building sets. Encourage your child to work on these activities in a quiet space.

Physical Activities

Active children often need to burn off energy before they can settle down. Physical activities that are calming in nature can help achieve this balance.

Yoga

Yoga is a fantastic way for children to improve their flexibility, and strength, and calm their minds. Many yoga poses are fun and easy for children to perform.

  • Benefits: Improves flexibility, strength, and mindfulness.
  • Tips: Use child-friendly yoga videos or attend a kids' yoga class. Make it a fun and regular part of their routine.

Slow Dancing

Dancing to slow music can be a soothing activity. It allows children to move their bodies while the slow tempo helps them relax.

  • Benefits: Promotes coordination, rhythm, and emotional expression.
  • Tips: Create a playlist of slow, calming songs. Encourage your child to move freely and expressively.

Gentle Stretching

Gentle stretching exercises can help release tension in the body and mind. Stretching together can be a bonding experience and can teach your child the importance of taking care of their body.

  • Benefits: Increases flexibility, reduces muscle tension, and promotes relaxation.
  • Tips: Make stretching a part of the morning or bedtime routine. Use guided stretching videos if needed.

Mindfulness Practises

Mindfulness involves being present in the moment and can significantly help in calming an active child. These practises teach children to focus on their breathing and bodily sensations.

Deep Breathing Exercises

Deep breathing exercises are simple and effective. Teaching your child to take slow, deep breaths can help them calm down quickly.

  • Benefits: Reduces anxiety, improves focus, and promotes relaxation.
  • Tips: Practise deep breathing together. Use a fun analogy, like blowing up a balloon, to make it engaging.

Guided Imagery

Guided imagery involves using the imagination to create calming and peaceful scenes. This can be a powerful tool for children to relax and escape from stress.

  • Benefits: Enhances creativity, reduces stress, and promotes relaxation.
  • Tips: Use guided imagery scripts or recordings designed for children. Encourage your child to imagine their own peaceful scenes.

Meditation

Meditation helps children develop focus and emotional regulation. Simple, short meditations can be very effective for young children.

  • Benefits: Improves focus, emotional regulation, and overall well-being.
  • Tips: Start with short sessions of 2-3 minutes. Use child-friendly meditation apps or videos.

Nature-Based Activities

Spending time in nature has a calming effect on children. Nature-based activities can help them connect with the environment and find peace.

Nature Walks

Taking a walk in nature can be incredibly calming. It allows children to explore and engage with their surroundings while burning off energy.

  • Benefits: Promotes physical activity, curiosity, and relaxation.
  • Tips: Choose safe, scenic routes. Encourage your child to observe and talk about what they see.

Gardening

Gardening can be a therapeutic activity. Children can learn about plants and nature while experiencing the calming effects of working with soil and plants.

  • Benefits: Teaches responsibility, enhances fine motor skills, and promotes relaxation.
  • Tips: Start with simple plants or herbs. Give your child their own small gardening tools and space.

Cloud Watching

Lying on the grass and watching clouds drift by can be very soothing. It allows children to use their imagination and relax in a natural setting.

  • Benefits: Enhances imagination, promotes relaxation, and fosters a connection with nature.
  • Tips: Choose a safe, comfortable spot. Encourage your child to describe the shapes they see in the clouds.

Routine-Building Strategies

Establishing a routine can provide structure and predictability, helping active children feel more secure and calm.

Consistent Bedtime Routine

A consistent bedtime routine can signal to your child that it’s time to wind down. Activities like reading a story, taking a warm bath, and listening to soft music can help them relax.

  • Benefits: Promotes better sleep, reduces bedtime resistance, and creates a calming atmosphere.
  • Tips: Stick to the same routine every night. Keep the activities calm and soothing.

Scheduled Quiet Time

Incorporating scheduled quiet time into your child’s day can help them learn to enjoy solitude and calm activities. This time can be used for reading, drawing, or simply relaxing.

  • Benefits: Teaches the importance of downtime, enhances focus, and reduces overstimulation.
  • Tips: Create a comfortable, quiet space for this time. Encourage your child to choose calm activities they enjoy.

Regular Mealtimes

Regular mealtimes can provide structure to your child’s day. Eating at consistent times can also help regulate their energy levels.

  • Benefits: Promotes healthy eating habits, regulates energy, and provides structure.
  • Tips: Plan balanced, nutritious meals. Involve your child in meal planning and preparation to make it more engaging.

Integrating Calming Activities into Daily Life

Incorporating these calming activities into your child’s daily routine can help them manage their energy levels and find a sense of calm. Here are some additional tips for integrating these activities into everyday life:

Lead by Example

Children often mimic their parents’ behaviour. By practising calming activities yourself, you can show your child the importance of relaxation and mindfulness.

  • Tips: Engage in yoga, deep breathing, or creative activities alongside your child. Share your experiences and benefits with them.

Create a Calming Environment

A calming environment can make a significant difference. Ensure your child’s space is free from excessive noise and clutter, and create a dedicated area for calming activities.

  • Tips: Use soft lighting, soothing colours, and comfortable furnishings. Keep the area organised and clutter-free.

Be Patient and Encouraging

Introducing new activities can take time and patience. Encourage your child and praise their efforts, even if they don’t immediately take to a new activity.

  • Tips: Be patient and persistent. Celebrate small successes and make the activities fun and engaging.

Conclusion

Super active children can benefit immensely from calming activities. By incorporating creative pursuits, physical exercises, mindfulness practises, nature-based activities, and routine-building strategies into their daily lives, you can help your child find balance and calmness. Remember, every child is unique, so it may take some experimentation to find the best activities for your child. With patience and consistency, these activities can provide a peaceful and enjoyable way for your active child to unwind and relax.

By fostering a calm and structured environment, you can support your child in developing healthy habits that will benefit them throughout their lives. Whether it's through the joy of creating art, the peace found in nature, or the routine of a bedtime story, these calming activities can make a significant difference in your child's overall well-being.


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