Relaxing Rainbow Breaths

This relaxing rainbow breaths exercise is a playful breathing technique for kids, which includes not only using the breath, but also visualisation and mindful movement.

{Related Post: Calming Leaf Breaths Activity for Kids}

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Rainbow Breathing Exercise
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What are Rainbows Breaths?

Rainbows are both a symbol of hope and peace and are one of the most beautiful occurrences in nature. I know that when we get to see one in real life, it’s a special moment that makes us all pause and feel full of joy and gratitude. So, what a lovely way to practice mindful breathing and bringing some calm, joy and colour into our lives.

By teaching kids to breath deeply and focus their attention, this rainbow breaths exercise can benefit children by helping them to relax and be more mindful. Practicing the rainbow breathing technique is a calming coping skill, one that can be learnt and used by children to help manage emotions and deal with the stressors of everyday life.


How to Teach Kids Rainbow Breathing

  • Rainbow Breaths is a lovely, calming activity for all ages and there are two variations we practice: 1. Rainbow Tracing Breaths and 2. Rainbow Arm Breaths. One uses a visual that children trace and the other uses mindful movement. Today we will be learning Rainbow Arm Breaths.
  • Share poster from our Breaths Breaths activity kit as a visual prompt. Buy Here.
  • Share with children the Rainbow breaths rhyme: A rainbow is inside of you and guess what its inside me too. A golden sunshine, a bright blue sky. Breathe in a colour and then smile.

Rainbow Breaths Instructions

Step 1. Introduce Rainbow Breaths

‘We are going to practice a breathing activity called Rainbow Breaths, we are going to make rainbow shapes with our arms and breath in our favourite colours. What is your favourite colour?’

Step 2. Relax

Ask children to imagine that they are sat under a beautiful rainbow. ‘Look up and see the brightest colours shining from the rainbow. You feel the warm sun on your face and start to feel calm and thankful.”

Step 4Notice

Now ask children to notice any physical sensations, feelings or thoughts.

‘No you are feeling so relaxed notice anywhere that you might feel tense in your body and how you feel. Think of something that you are thankful for. Rainbows are thankful for both the sunshine and the rain as without it they would not show all their colours.’

Step 5Breathe

Visualise Colour. “Imagine your favourite colour. Mine is yellow, I’m going to breathe in yellow and breath out yellow. Now you try.”

Movement. “Now let’s pop our arms to the side and as we breathe in our colour, we will also bring our palms together. Then as we breathe out our colour we will lower our arms slowly. Try and concentrate on the feeling in your arms and hands”

Step 6Reflect and Play

When we share, it’s an opportunity for us to connect and feel listened to. Encourage your child to share their experiences and model by sharing yours too. Remember to let them know there’s no wrong answers. Here’s a list of ideas for questions you could talk about:

  • What were you thankful for?
  • What was your favourite part?
  • What is your favourite colour? What did it feel like to breathe in this colour?
  • Tell me about a time you’ve seen a rainbow?

You can end Rainbow Breaths with this game:

Mindfulness Rainbow Activity
  • Activity: Feel a Rainbow
  • Aims: To practice recognising feelings and linking them to colours that make us feel positive.

Instruction for the activity:

  1. Read the ‘Feel a Rainbow’ Poem
  2. Choose a colour. Then take turns thinking of something that makes you feel happy / calm / excited that is that colour. Share with the group or in pairs, then choose another colour.


Explore and Play

Once you’ve practiced your Rainbow breaths, you can then follow with a playful rainbow themed . It could be a story, craft project, art activity, music, dancing, singing, cooking, role play, puzzles or whatever you and your child enjoy doing together. I’ve put together a list of books and a few fun Rainbow themed activities that you could try.

Rainbow Breaths for Kids

I hope that you enjoy teaching this breathing activity to your child or even learning to use it yourself. We can have very powerful memories associated with colours, so using this activity to imagine breathing in happy colours is a great way to feel positive and relax the body.

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