- To reconnect with their environment and be “present” in the moment as a way to manage stress
- To learn and practice various breathing techniques
- To identify and recreate a safe space
- To identify the value of having a personal safe space
Grounding Exercise 3-5 min
We want to start today’s activity with a simple grounding exercise to to be mindful of our surroundings and remember we are safe.
Start by taking three deep breaths and silently name 3 things you:
Take 3 breaths in between naming items for each sense. For example, name three things you hear, then three breaths, then name three things you see.
- Are you more aware of your body in relation to the space it is in?
- Do you feel more connected to the present time and space?
- Do you feel more relaxed?
Breathing Exercises 15-20 min
Room setup prior to meeting: Create 5 stations throughout the room to practice different breathing exercises. Download the Breathe2Relax application on an phone or Ipad prior to the club meeting or show the YouTube clip (see link below). Prepare the following 5 stations prior to the club meeting starting.
Divide the club into 5 groups.
- Station 1: Bubble Blowing
- Station 2: Ping Pong Ball Race w. Straws
- Station 3: Breathe2Relax application (download or use Youtube recording: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3B9Ij9uOqBQ)
- Station 4: Floating Ball (http://allfortheboys.com/home/2014/06/26/floating-ball-activity.html)
- **Supplies needed: Blank computer paper, tape, bendy straws (1 per club member), ping pong balls (1 per club member at the station)
- Station 5: Feather Breathing
- Option A: Holding a feather in your hand blow up one side and down the other, as you inhale and exhale
- Option B: Choose a feather and try to keep it off the ground for as long as possible by breathing “life” into it.
Allow 3-5 minutes at each station (use a timer or bell). Once everyone has rotated through all stations, bring club back together to discuss the following processing questions:
- What was your favorite station?
- Were you more aware of your breath in these activities?
- Why do you think it is important to focus on our breath in certain situations?
- How do you think trauma and breathing connect?
Re-Create Your Safe Space 10 min
- The next activity is to identify your own safe space. A space real or imagined where you feel most comfortable.
- Use construction paper, scissors, magazines, computer, markers, and/or crayons to create or capture your safe space on a sheet of construction paper.
As you re-create your safe space, consider not only what your safe space LOOKS like, but also what it SOUNDS like, what you FEEL/TOUCH in your safe space, and what you TASTE in your safe space (favorite food or taste from a favorite memory).
- How do you think identifying and creating a personal safe space can help you in the future?
- Do you think that a safe space is an important thing for someone dealing with trauma to envision? Why or why not?
- How can a safe environment help someone dealing with a trauma?