Brain Breaks in the High School Classroom

What impact does Movement have on Students?

Movement " turns on" the brain. Activity can activate areas of a child’s brain that allow for better learning

So... It's time to move! What Can I do with my students?

Students stand up and the teacher has them do five different movements in descending order. For example the teacher would say: “Do five jumping jacks, spin around four times, hop on one foot three times, walk all the way around the classroom two times, give your neighbor one high-five

Trading Places

Have students stand behind their pushed-in chairs. Call out a trait, and everyone who has that trait must change places with someone else (students who do not have the trait stay where they are). Examples: “Everyone with curly hair.” “Everyone who ate cereal for breakfast.” “Everyone who is wearing stripes.”

Line up

Have students line up using a specific criteria, such as age (use day and month, not just year), height, alphabetically by middle name, hair length, etc.

6 Spots

Number six spots around your room from 1-6. Have students each go to a spot of their choice. Choose a student to roll a die. All the students at the number rolled must go back to their seats. Students that are left go to a new spot, and the die is rolled again. Continue until only a few students are left.

There are also benefits of more meditative brain breaks

Deep Breaths

Guide students through the process of taking 3 deep inhales, holding, and then exhaling between activities


Set a timer and challenge your students to sit and "do nothing" for 2 minutes. Encourage them to focus their energy on observing the environment around them

Want more ideas of short activities you can use to increase students' focus? Click below!


Created with images by TanteTati - "notepad pencil pen" • Alexas_Fotos - "the eleventh hour disaster alarm clock" • Meditations - "abstract blur britain" • pixel2013 - "dandelion seeds pointed flower" • chase_elliott - "Focus"

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