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10 Brain Breaks for Kids During Online Learning

10 Brain Breaks for Kids During Online Learning

These quick and easy ideas for recess—or brain breaks—during virtual learning will help keep your student focused and happy.


Students and parents can attest to the difficulties that come with virtual learning. Days are spent in front of the screen. Microphone issues and computer crashes are the norm. You feel frazzled while your child is frustrated and unhappy. That’s where brain breaks come in. Taking a timeout during remote learning can and will help your little learner—and you—stay creative, alert, and focused. Schedule brain breaks throughout the day or bust one out spontaneously if it looks like your child needs a breather.

The ideas below will help you up your brain break game during virtual learning. Don’t worry; space won’t be an issue. You can do these brain breaks whether you’re in a house in the suburbs or cramped city digs.

Get Grooving

Crank up some tunes and host a dance party. It’s a great way to get out the wiggles. Make it extra silly by stopping the music for a round of freeze dance.

Hold an Exercise Class

Release your inner Richard Simmons by holding a gym class. Go for simple, old-school exercises. That means having kids do jumping jacks, toe touches, push-ups and sit-ups. Here are some of our favorite online exercise videos for kids for inspiration. 

Set Up a Scavenger Hunt

Kids can search for household items based on a theme. Ask them to grab something that starts with the letter “B.” Then round up an object that’s “red.” It’s an educational way to take a break.

Act Like an Animal

Kids will giggle as they pretend that they’re an animal. Start loud by having them jump like a frog, gallop like a horse, or slither like a snake. Finish with quieter motions to get them back into school mode with actions like kiss like a fish.



Pop the Bubbles

Take advantage of the bubble wrap from all your deliveries. Kids can crawl, roll, or run on this fun packaging material.

Play a Round of Simon Says

Make this game as simple or difficult as you want. You can slowly do the game’s movements or quickly switch your motions. Add in some silliness by making a funny face or sticking out your tongue.

Transform Into a Letter of the Alphabet

Call out letters and let your child make them with his body. You’ll both laugh as you see how he contorts his body to make the letter. No way is incorrect of course.

Strike a Pose

Namaste. Yoga can help reduce stress in kids and adults alike. Search online for free printable yoga cards. Or find an app to help teach you and your little yogi some new poses.

March in a Band

Ask your child to march in place. Call out different musical instruments. Your little musician can play them, even with sound effects. (Minimize the noise level if you’d like by explaining that you’re a quiet marching band.)

Stand Like a Statue

Describe a challenging pose. Maybe it’s put your right hand on your head. Lift up your right leg. Put your left hand on your left hip. Your child must hold the pose until you’ve clapped three times. You can even snap a picture to document the silly stance.

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Stacey Feintuch

Author: Stacey Feintuch is a freelance writer for print and online publications. She has written for ReadersDigest.com, BestofNJ.com, K health, The Boca Raton Observer magazine, The Bump, Care.com, Healthline, Highlights for Kids, HealthyWomen, and other outlets. She has a BA in journalism from The George Washington University and an MA in magazine journalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. She grew up in Morris County, NJ, and currently lives in Bergen County, NJ. A mom to two boys, you'll find her at the baseball diamond on the weekends. See More

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