Brain Breaks for Kids

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Here are my favorite brain breaks for kids to do at home or in the classroom!

These printable and digital brain break activities were created by special education teachers and fellow pediatric therapists over at Your Therapy Source. I personally make use of many of their creations, and these are my recommended go-to resources for quick gross motor activities.

I have given a quick review of some of my favorite resources, and have grouped them according to whether they are printable activity cards, posters you can put up at home or in the classroom, and whether they contain digital video links, as these are incredibly useful for both online and classroom learning.

the best brain breaks for kids and high schoolers

These products are created and hosted by Your Therapy Source. I use and trust these resources myself, and these are my reviews for your convenience. Clicking to view the products below will take you over to the YTS website, where you can browse the product in more detail. These are my affiliate links and I will earn a small commission should you purchase something through my links. When you purchase one of the resources from YTS, you are allowed to print as many copies as you need for the children in your family, classroom or therapy room, so they are great value for money.



Printable Brain Breaks for Kids

The following resources are brain break activity PDFs which can be printed and cut into cards.

Keep them in a special box on your desk or where students can easily access them, for example in a pocket chart. You can read them out to younger students, or split your class into groups and give each group a different brain break to do. The possibilities are endless!

Some of the poster resources and digital/video resources also contain activity cards, so do check them all out!


Mini Movement Breaks

More than 60 sensory motor activity cards that make perfect brain breaks for the classroom! There are 9 cards on each page, and there are no pictures - just super-easy-to-follow instructions that are fun to carry out.

It is a good idea to sort through the activities ahead of time – perhaps create separate boxes for on-the-spot activities, and for activities that need a bit more space/move-around-the-room


Some activities require a partner, while some can be done in sitting, so I do recommend that you sort them and curate them according to the needs of the class/child/occasion/time of day.

Then you can be confident of pulling out a card that suits the need!

View Mini Movement Breaks


Monster Movements for Transitions

56 quick sensory motor movement cards that make great brain breaks for kids at school or at home. There are 8 cards on each page.

Because they have been designed for transitions, many of them are perfect for kids to do when moving between classes, or when packing away books between lessons.

Some activities can be done on the spot, while others require a bit more space. The monster theme lends itself well to preschool and early elementary kids!

View Monster Movement Transition Cards

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Exercise Posters for Brain Breaks

Exercises for Classroom and Home

This set of 5 posters gives students simple fitness exercises that make great brain break activities.

Lovely for classrooms and can be done on the spot. Each exercise comes with an illustration and instructions on how to carry it out effectively.

Put them in up in the classroom, and have a different student pick an exercise according to the need each day!

Exercise themes include:

  • Wake-Up Exercises (vigorous, aerobic)
  • Be Strong Exercises (slow movement, holding a position to build endurance, mostly core exercises)
  • Focus Exercises (yoga based poses)
  • Stretch Exercises (variety of stretches for all parts of the body)
  • Calming Exercises (yoga based and breathing exercises)

These posters come in a digital PDF version or as a set of printed Exercise Posters (PRIME delivery in the USA).


Chair Exercises Posters

These chair exercises are great brain breaks to help kids get their focus back during long lessons. And because they are done in a chair, they are great for situations where there is not much room for moving around, for example in a crowded classroom or a conference hall.

They can be done in regular chairs or in wheelchairs, making them great for inclusivity in the classroom!

You can choose from:

  • Posture Exercises
  • Strength Exercises (arms, core muscles and legs)
  • Energy Exercises to get the blood moving
  • Body Exercises to improve coordination skills
  • Calm Exercises to help kids get their focus back

You can order the 5 color posters in printed format (PRIME delivery in the USA) or you can get a digital bundle of color posters, full page versions of each exercise, and exercise cards - in black and white or color.

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Digital/Video Classroom Exercise Resources

Brain Break Machine

50 quick exercise breaks for in the classroom or online learning. Print them out, play the video or use the slides...so many options, and so versatile.

This awesome resource is one of my favorite sets of brain breaks for kids!

With this single purchase you get:

- an MP4 video (with music) that you save to your device and play it without needing to access the internet again.

- Regular PDF Printables that you can print out and laminate as full page or smaller cards.

- Power Point and Google Slides for your online classes / interactive whiteboard / telehealth visits.

View the Brain Break Machine


Aerobic Exercises for Small Spaces

Although some of these can be done by younger kids, I feel these are ideal brain breaks for kids aged 10 or older who are reasonably coordinated and reasonably fit. Perfect as brain breaks for high schoolers!

Use these quick and easy exercises as on-the-spot classroom brain breaks!

This product is a combination of printed exercises and animated videos that are accessed through a QR code or bitly link.

View Aerobic Exercises for Small Spaces

Remember, clicking on the "View" links will take you to Your Therapy Source where you can view the products in more detail and purchase if you are interested. I receive a small commission when you purchase through one of my links, which helps support my site, but you are under no obligation to buy anything!


If you are looking for more gross motor ideas that can be used as brain breaks for kids, why not check out these pages of my site for photographed activities and tips:

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printable brain breaks for kids

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