In this lesson plan, adaptable for grades 3-12, students explore BrainPOP resources to learn what mindfulness is all about and techniques for practicing mindfulness. As they begin to include mindfulness in their daily routines, students will notice increased gratitude for everyday events and people in their lives, such as a sunset, a good friend, a delicious meal, etc. The lesson culminates in keeping a Gratitude Journal.


Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Share what they know and want to know about mindfulness.
  2. Watch a BrainPOP movie and review resources about mindfulness.
  3. Identify mindfulness strategies they currently practice or plan to try.
  4. Start a Gratitude Journal.


  • Internet access for BrainPOP
  • Interactive whiteboard


Lesson Procedure:

  1. On the board, write the word “Mindfulness.” Ask students what they know about mindfulness. Jot their ideas on the board. For students who are aware of mindfulness, ask them if they’ve ever practiced it, what techniques they use, and how it makes them feel.
  2. Make sure students understand that mindfulness is about paying attention to what you’re doing and thinking in a calm and focused way. Explain that there are many benefits to practicing mindfulness, such as feeling happier and more relaxed , making better decisions, being more patient, having better attention skills, and so much more. Point out that being mindful helps us in all parts of our lives -- from succeeding in school to getting along with others.
  3. Show the movie Mindfulness on the whiteboard to the whole class. Enable closed captioning to aid in student comprehension. Pause to explain and clarify as needed.
  4. Now have students independently open their Make-a-Map assignments. Instruct them to watch the movie again, within Make-a-Map, and using a spider map, have them identify which mindfulness exercise they would like to try.
  5. Allow time in class each day for students to practice some of the exercises they want to try.
  6. Ask students what they think “Gratitude” means. Allow them to answer, then make sure they understand that it has to do with recognizing and appreciating what’s good in our lives and about being thankful for those things. Explain that mindfulness helps us to take a pause in our busy lives, notice what we’re grateful for, and appreciate them. They could be small things--like being grateful to see a beautiful sunset or big things like having a place to live, food to eat, etc.
  7. Encourage students to return to their Mindfulness maps and try some of the exercises they selected. As they do, have them also start to keep a Gratitude Journal. Allow for five minutes each day, such as the start or end of class, for students to jot down something they feel grateful for that day.
  8. After a few weeks of practicing mindfulness and recording in their Gratitude Journals, have the class come together to describe how these activities are affecting them. Encourage students to share which exercises they like best and why. Also have them share, if they’d like, some of their Gratitude Journals with each other.