Letting Go Breath: Mindful Breathing Practice K-5

Letting Go Breath

A K-5 Mindful Breathing Practice


Type of Practice: Mindfulness


Recommended Grade Levels: K-5


Calming/Energizing: Calming


Time: 2 minutes


Script for Guided Practice

Today we’re going to practice letting go breath. This is a great breath to use when we want to help quiet our minds and bodies. 


We’ll do this by breathing out for a longer time than we breathe in. Each time we breathe out we’ll imagine that we’re breathing out something that’s bothering us. 


Begin by sitting with your legs crossed on your mat or sitting in your chair with both feet on the ground. 


Gently place your right hand on your heart and your left hand on your belly. 


Take a moment to check in with your body to see how it’s feeling.


Now check in with your mind. How is it doing? 


During this practice, we’re going to breathe in while we count to three. Then we’ll breathe out while we count to five. 


Are you ready? 


Breathe in for one, two, three.

Breathe out for one, two, three, four, five. 


Breathe in for one, two, three. 

Breathe out for one, two, three, four, five.


As you breathe out imagine letting go of anything that’s bothering you. 


(Repeat this as many times as you’d like.)


Wonderful. Check in with your body and your mind. Do you notice any changes? 


You do not need to read the included script verbatim. Adapt the language so that it is appropriate for your students in particular. 


It is not important for students to get this breath practice “exactly right.” Instead, focus on helping them build mind-body awareness each time you practice. 


Offer students positive reinforcements throughout each practice. Focus on qualities and behaviors they can control, like their focus, effort, or persistence. Be specific whenever possible. This will help your students develop a “growth mindset.” 


Use hand signals to help cue students’ breath, or, for younger students, use a Hoberman sphere, pulling it out to indicate an inhale and pushing it in to cue an exhale. 


Invite students to visualize “letting go” of any physical or emotional discomfort they’re experiencing with each exhale.

Authors and Provenance

Authors: Megan Downey and Anna Basile


Adapted from: Compassionate Schools Project

Associated Graphic