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Gimme a Break! Brain Break Ideas to Get Kids Through the School Day

Kids got the wiggles? Here are ideas for how to take a constructive break during at-home schooling

By Rachael Weiss, publisher of Macaroni Kid Union County, N.C. September 30, 2020


During a regular school day students get up to transition between classes and lunch, along with making time for classes like gym, art, or music. These were times to stretch their legs and give their brains a break. 

But with my child virtually learning this year, I need to remember to build that important brain break time into our day.

Wondering what a brain break looks like? We have ideas! Check out our list of brain break activity suggestions for kids of all ages. Since many of our children who will be learning at home this year will be in front of a screen most of the day, we've tried to include mostly suggestions that don't involve technology:

At-home brain break ideas for elementary school students

At-home brain break ideas for middle school and high school students

Depending on your child, at least some — if not all — of the elementary school age activities will likely engage middle school age and even some high school kids in need of a break. Here are some more ideas for older kids:

  • Relax by creating a Zentangle drawing
  • Create and color mini mandalas
  • Complete a Sudoku puzzle
  • Make a collage or a vision board
  • Practice a sport
  • Throw darts
  • Take the dog for a walk
  • Go for a quick run 
  • Color, paint, or draw
  • Catch up with a friend

I hope these ideas help keep your kids — and you! — from experiencing brain overload as we adjust to at-home learning. Now c'mon! Let's take a break.

Rachael Weiss is the publisher of Macaroni Kid Union, N.C.