This mindfulness game is fun AND yummy :-) It’s similar to the Raisin Meditation, the difference is that you can easily make this into a game for a group of kids.
The tasting game is a fun and tactile way to introduce mindfulness. It engages all senses and you get a yummy snack, too.
Did you know that conscious attention applied slowly has a calming, awareness building and relaxing effect? Studies even suggest that eating mindfully can help us digest better and that mindful attention helps regulate the amount of food we consume.
Mindfulness Games – The Tasting Game
Purpose: Sensory awareness, Focus, Calm
Best for: Ages 3+, groups or one-on-one
What you need: 5 different foods that fit inside a child’s palm
First, start by preparing apple slices, raisins or other dried fruit, orange segments, lemon segments, bananas, cookies, popcorn, grapes in halves for small children, etc.
TIP: With older kids you might want to cut the food into bits that aren’t so easily recognized. You could for example make sticky cubes out of bananas.
Next, tell your children or child that this is a tasting game and that the idea is to use her senses to focus on the food and guess what it is. Ask her to try to be silent during the activity and share her experiences only after she’s eaten the food.
Ask your child to close her eyes and carefully place a small piece of food in her hand. Ask her to notice how the food feels in her hand—to simply think about it. Is it soft, hard, squishy, wet, dry, smooth or bumpy? Is it cold or warm? What could it be?
Ask her to lift the food up to her nose and smell it. Does it smell like anything? What could it be?
Next, ask her to put the food in her mouth, but not to take a bite just yet. How does the food feel? Can she feel a texture? Does the texture feel different when it’s in her mouth compared to when she held it in her hand?
Ask her to bite into it. Is it soft or hard? Is it crunchy? Wet or dry? What does it taste like? Is there more than one flavor? Sweet? Sour? Salty? Spicy?
Ask her if she’s ready to swallow. Is she able to feel her throat getting ready to swallow?
After she has swallowed, ask if she could feel the food sliding down her throat. And if there are any flavors left lingering in her mouth.
When she’s ready, ask her what the food was and when she figured it out. Ask her how it felt to focus like this and if she’d like to continue with another piece of food.
To wrap up the exercise, ask the child what she learned from eating slowly and mindfully.
- Was eating like this different from how she’s used to?
- How was it different?
- Would she like to do this again?
- How could focusing attention like this help her in other activities?
To make it more game-like and competitive you can divide a group of kids into teams and ask them to raise their hands when they think they know what the food is. Tell them to whisper the answer to you. After the round, when everyone has had the chance to finish you’ll announce the winning team or individual.
If you liked this activity then…
you’ll find 150 playful mindfulness activities in my five-star rated best-selling book:
“The Most Important Mindfulness Book You’ll Ever Buy” – Helen Hudson
Wishing you many fun mindful moments with your children :-)
Chief Mindfulness Ninja @ Blissful Kids
If you are new to mindfulness with children OR you want to make practice easy we recommend our online mindfulness courses.
Chris Bergstrom is a bestselling mindfulness author, a leader in the field of mindfulness, the founder of BlissfulKids.com, a blog dedicated to children’s mindfulness, and a dad who is thrilled to practice mindfulness with his son. He is a certified mindfulness facilitator and trained to teach mindfulness to students in K-12. He’s also known as “the dad who tried 200+ mindfulness activities” and has taught meditation for more than 15 years.