Mind-Body Connection

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Learning Goal

Students will understand how emotions feel in their bodies.

Learning Objectives

By the end of the lessons, students will be able to:

  • Draw a map of their bodies showing where they feel different emotions
  • Understand that different people feel emotions in their bodies differently
Learning Summary

Butterflies in your stomach? We all really do feel our emotions in our body; there’s even scientific evidence proving it. Why is this important then to teach? Because it helps us understand that we all have some control over how we feel both emotionally and physically.

This lesson starts with a mindful moment called sphere breath in which students learn a new breathing technique bringing movement to their breathing. You then lead the students in a stretching warm-up in which they notice where they feel movement in their bodies. Students then experience a body scan where they pay attention to different parts of their bodies through the visualization of a flashlight (or Pixar lamp). After the scan, using a body map template, students draw and color where they feel certain emotions in their bodies. Students end by reflecting in their journal.

computer icon Online Teaching Tips for Mind-Body Connection

This lesson does not require any real modifications for online fr;obrtu. To bring in other forms of media, check out the video under lesson variations. Also, there are two great additional activities, the Body Imaging of Emotions activity as well as the Ice Cube Challenge, that can both be done virtually. 

Have students turn off their cameras for the Body Scan.

Give students time (at least a minute) to get settled and comfortable for the body scan. A minute of wait time on a recorded delivery can feel awkward as the teacher, but it will take students some time to get settled. After the activity, ask the students the discussion questions. Even though it’s not a true discussion, it will help them reflect on the experience.

CASEL Competencies

Self-awareness: The abilities to understand one’s own emotions, thoughts, and values and how they influence behavior across contexts. This includes capacities to recognize one’s strengths and limitations with a well-grounded sense of confidence and purpose.

Self-management: The abilities to manage one’s emotions, thoughts, and behaviors effectively in different situations and to achieve goals and aspirations. This includes the capacities to delay gratification, manage stress, and feel motivation & agency to accomplish personal/collective goals.