A-B-C Around Me
What you’ll need: Just yourself or someone to play with if you like
What’s it for?
This activity will help you feel more settled and connected to your surroundings, particularly if you are in a new place and feel a little anxious. A-B-C around me will help you feel calm and safe by turning your attention from any worries and focusing on a present moment. It could also be a fun pastime during a long drive, bus journey or when you need to wait for a long time.
Notice how you’re feeling right now. Close your eyes and notice what’s going on inside your mind and body.
How are you feeling?
What are you thinking?
How does your body feel?
Look around you and notice something you can see that starts with a letter A. It could be an object (Apple, Armchair), a name of a person (Anna, Allan) or a description of something you can see (Angry face, A lot of rain). Write it down on a piece of paper.
Have another look and maybe you will notice something else starting with A. If you do, note it down. Don’t worry if you cannot see anything starting with A, there are so many more letters in the alphabet!
Look around again and name something you can see that starts with a letter B (Book), then C (Cuddly bear), D (Door) and so on, until you have at least five words written down. Skip a letter if you cannot think of a word.
Have a look at your words and let your imaginations guide you by creating a short story. For example: Once upon a time there was a girl called Anna, who had an Angry face. She did not like reading Books very much. Every time she had to practice reading, she sat in her favourite Armchair and held her Cuddly bear tightly, which felt very comforting to her.
You could invite a friend and family to join you and share your stories with each other.
When you finish, bring your attention back to your body and mind and notice how you feel.
Extra Activity: For a variation of this activity, you can take your mind on a journey by finding words from different topics and turning them into a story. This could include COUNTRIES, CITIES, PEOPLE, FRUIT, COLOURS, ANIMALS. When you choose your categories, try naming items in each category alphabetically. For example: “Argentina, Bristol, Charlie, Dates, Electric Blue, Frog”. See how far you can get through the alphabet and skip a letter if you cannot think of a word. Most importantly, have fun and let your imagination guide you.
When you’ve finished, spend a moment reflecting on the activity and ask yourself the following questions:
How important do you think it is to be mindful (present in a moment)?
When does your mind get most busy with anxious thoughts?
Do you think that bringing your attention to the environment around you can help you feel calmer when you feel worried or anxious?
What else helps your body and mind feel safe and calm?
How did you feel after finishing this activity? Have you noticed any difference in your body or mood?
This activity thinks about interrupting anxious thoughts by drawing your attention to a present moment, which is sometimes called mindfulness. Particularly in times of stress or worry, this mindful game can help your body and mind feel safe and calm. Practicing mindfulness can have an incredible effect on your mood and attention while helping you act thoughtfully and build even stronger relationships.
If you would like to, share something about your experience with this activity with someone you live with! Ask the person who looks after you to send us an email if you have any questions or comments about the activity or would like to send us any pictures (firstname.lastname@example.org). Don't forget to subscribe for more fun CAT activities!
Created by Karolina Koman © July 2021
Creative Arts Used: Creative Writing
Psychological Areas Explored: Mindfulness, Attention and Hyperactivity, Resilience, Emotional Wellbeing
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These activities could be done by children of all ages, but some may need the support of their parent or carer to read the instructions or complete the activity safely.
This website was made by CAT Corner to help you explore your feelings through fun creative arts activities. The people using the website and the people responsible for them need to make sure they stay safe (full disclaimer on About page).