My Magic Breath is more than a picture book. It’s a self-regulation book that empowers kids to control and understand their emotions. Add this wonderful book to your classroom lesson plans, and connect it with wonderful activities and discussions at school.
A Self-Regulation Book: My Magic Breath
In the primary classroom, young learners gain knowledge and navigate the daily trials and tribulations of social interaction with teachers, staff, and peers. With all this, we must ensure one important word can not be forgotten. That word is “self-regulation.”
Self-regulation is a skill that lays the foundation for a lifetime of emotional well-being, resilience, and academic success. As teachers, we need to ensure we are preparing students with the self-management tools to succeed, and what better way to do that than with a self-regulation book?
One favorite that stands out is My Magic Breath by Nick Ortner. This beautiful book captivates young imaginations and guides the journey to self-regulation.
Table of Contents
- A Self-Regulation Book: My Magic Breath
- My Magic Breath Summary
- Teaching Self-Regulation with My Magical Breath
- My Magic Breath Lesson Plans
- The Magic Breath Extension Activities
- Self-Regulation Book Companions
- Resources to Help You Teach Self-Regulation
- More Self-Regulation Ideas For The Classroom
Children’s Picture Books in Teaching Self-Regulation
Children’s picture books possess a unique magic – the ability to transport young readers into faraway worlds filled with colorful characters and meaningful lessons. These stories go beyond mere entertainment; they serve as ways to teach students crucial life skills, and the skill of self-regulation is no exception.
Picture books blend narratives and illustrations so easily that they create a compelling learning experience that grabs the attention of young minds and encourages them to reflect on their emotions and behaviors.
My Magic Breath Summary
My Magic Breath by Nick Ortner is a charming children’s book that takes readers on a journey of self-discovery through the art of mindful breathing. In this enchanting tale, a young girl learns that her breath holds incredible power as a magical tool for bringing calmness and focus to moments of excitement, stress, or anxiety.
All in all, Nick Ortner’s expertise in mindfulness shines through as the story unfolds and easily brings practical breathing exercises into the narrative, making it an engaging and hands-on experience for children. This book not only captivates young minds with its vibrant illustrations and storytelling but also equips them with valuable skills for self-regulation that will last a lifetime.
My Magic Breath is an invaluable teacher resource because you can easily connect it with classroom activities. The book doesn’t tell a tale; it invites students to participate actively in their learning journey.
Through the little girl’s experiences, children are introduced to practical breathing strategies that empower them to navigate moments of stress, anxiety, or excitement. Teachers can easily incorporate these self-regulation strategies into daily classroom routines, creating a supportive environment where students learn to recognize and manage their emotions effectively.
Teaching Self-Regulation with My Magical Breath
You can use this picture book in many ways to make learning about self-regulation a fun and engaging experience, blending its beautiful story with practical breathing techniques.
An Interactive Self-Regulation Book
Every page of My Magic Breath is an opportunity for hands-on learning. Firstly, as you read, invite children to participate actively by pausing at key moments and guiding them through taking magical breaths. These pauses serve as checkpoints, allowing students to experience firsthand the calming effect of mindful breathing as the story unfolds.
Introduce the concept of the “Magic Breath.” Prompt children to take deep, intentional breaths, encouraging them to visualize moments in their minds and then release those thoughts with each exhale. This practice enhances their connection to the narrative and equips them with a practical strategy for self-regulation.
Engage in meaningful conversations about emotions as they arise in the story. Discuss different feelings the characters experience and, more importantly, how taking deep breaths in and out can be a superhero move to make those emotions more manageable. All in all, this dialogue helps children recognize the power of their breath in navigating a spectrum of emotions.
To reinforce these lessons, introduce a breathing strategies poster into your classroom. Take the time to explore each strategy, allowing students to practice and discuss how they feel. Whether it’s “Triangle Breaths” or “Candle Breaths,” these techniques become tools in their emotional toolkit, ready to be utilized whenever needed.
Integrating these interactive lessons and breathing strategies into your teaching repertoire, My Magical Breath becomes a story and a transformative experience. As you guide your students through the magic of mindful breathing, you give them skills for self-regulation, empowering them to navigate the ups and downs of their budding lives with resilience.
My Magic Breath Lesson Plans
My Magic Breath is a great addition to your classroom library and a resource for self-regulation lessons. Like other self-regulation picture books, you can use this book to create wonderful lesson plans.
Before diving into the enchanting world of My Magic Breath, set the stage for exploration. Begin by asking students about their experiences with emotions, creating a comfortable space for sharing. After that, discuss that our breath can be like magic, helping us navigate various feelings. Consequently, you might even initiate a brief breathing exercise to pique their interest and introduce the concept of mindful breathing.
While reading, use strategic points in the story to guide students in practicing the “Magic Breath.” Ask open-ended questions about the characters’ emotions, allowing for reflection and discussion.
After completing the story, gather students for a reflective discussion. Explore how the characters used their breath to navigate different emotions and ask students to share their own experiences with the “Magic Breath” practice. Connect the narrative to real-life situations, emphasizing how these newfound breathing strategies can be applied when facing challenges or celebrating victories.
Use book chat cards to help encourage discussions before, during, and after the book. These chats can often lead to deeper discussions. It’s amazing the discussions that come from these books!
Interactive Anchor Chart
Breathing technique posters are a great way to give students the tools they need to be successful in the classroom. Since My Magic Breath gives so many great breathing techniques, consider creating an anchor chart that includes all the different breathing techniques afterward. Hang it around the classroom so they can easily reference it and use it when needed.
Writing prompts are a great way to help students internalize what they have just read. Whether you have students discuss in a large group, with partners, or work individually, writing prompts will get them thinking about how breathing can help them calm down and regulate their emotions.
After students are done writing, discuss the different strategies people have come up with as a whole group and see if other students could also use those strategies to help.
The Magic Breath Extension Activities
After reading and completing the activities above, extending the learning is always a good idea. Many self-regulation activities can enhance this read-aloud and make learning even more fun for students.
My Breath and I – Painting Art Activity
First, take a picture of each child individually. Have them turn sideways and blow out with their mouth. After that, have the kids cut out their picture and paste it onto the paper. Finally, encourage them to get creative and create a beautiful design showing what their breath would look like. Each one will be unique, just like each child will use a unique technique to help self-regulate.
My Breathing Book
Read My Breathing Book to learn about breathing and how it helps students regulate their emotions. Students can use this book to help them determine what to do when they are stressed, anxious, upset, etc., and struggling with self-regulation. It also provides them with ways to calm down.
Visualizing Our Breath: A Drawing Activity
Discuss with kids how our breathing changes when we feel different ways. Have them close their eyes and imagine breathing during other moments. Have them think about times when they felt other emotions (i.e., sad, angry, excited, calm, etc.). Ask how their breathing changed with their feelings. Was it slow? Fast? Heavy? Light? Then, ask them to open their eyes and draw what their breath looks like using crayons.
“Take a Breath” Student Cards – Match & Name Game
It is an easy game where students try to match the picture cards with the breathing strategy description card. This will not only help students with memory and learning different breathing techniques. But it will give them a long list of different breathing exercises they can use as they work on self-regulation.
Self-Regulation Book Companions
It’s always a great idea to include multiple books to show students how self-regulation is a skill they need to learn and how it can be challenging. I’ve created more book companions for some of my favorite self-regulation books.
I Am Yoga book companion lesson teaches us about yoga. Children will recognize that they have the power to strengthen their bodies and calm their minds through yoga. They will practice yoga poses while breathing.
Listening to My Body book companion lesson is about how sensations and feelings go together. Children will be encouraged to listen to their bodies and develop an awareness of what it is telling them. Altogether, they will learn and use calming strategies.
The Rabbit Listened book companion lesson is about how needs change and understanding our emotions. Children will recognize that what we need shifts depending on what happens to us. They will understand the importance of listening and showing empathy.
Charlotte and the Quiet Place book companion lesson is about finding “quiet” to focus and do what they want to do. Children will recognize a quiet place that they can go to or imagine ways to help them find calm and peace. They will practice sitting still in quiet.
Resources to Help You Teach Self-Regulation
Self-Regulation Book Companions
The Magic Breath Book Companion is a great resource that will not only help students understand the power of breathing. However, it will allow them to learn and practice breathing strategies to help children manage their feelings and find ways to calm themselves.
There are many other great Self-Regulation Mentor Text Companions out there besides The Magic Breath. Each book companion helps students with either self-management, calming strategies, or mindfulness. Students will participate in classroom discussions and book chats, share their feelings in written form, and participate in fun, engaging activities that build emotional awareness and social skills.
All in all, if you like this resource, you’ll love my SEL Book Companion Bundle. It includes over 40 books that focus on growth mindset, kindness, feelings, and MORE!
Free My Magic Breath Activities
Try the FREE My Magic Breath activities by Proud to be Primary. Students will love learning self-regulation breathing techniques, creating a beautiful breath drawing, and explaining what type of calm-down strategies work for them!
Click the image below to grab a copy.
More Self-Regulation Ideas For The Classroom
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