'Mind in a Jar', also known as calming jars, provide a wonderful visual experience when teaching mindfulness. The concept was created for children, but I have discovered people of all ages are drawn to this easy and fun mindfulness activity.
I love this tool because it is easy, effective and inexpensive to make. I have used this jar with students for several years with great success. There is something very soothing when we watch the glitter slowly move through the jar.
The concept is that the jar represents your mind. When the liquid is clear and all the glitter is settled and still at the bottom, the jar is calm, like your mind when you are feeling, focused and rested.
The glitter in the jar represents all of your thoughts, feelings, memories and fears. As you shake the jar, the glitter swirls around making it hard to see clearly through the all the internal noise. The glitter storm is representative of your mind when you have dozens of thoughts, feelings and emotions swirling around. Your mind begins to race, you may feel stressed, anxious or out of control.
Just watching the glitter slowly sink to the bottom of the jar is an act of mindfulness. When we slow down and breathe, our thoughts begin to settle and our mind becomes more clear.
HOW TO MAKE MIND IN A JAR
Jar with tightly sealed lid (Tip: with younger kids use plastic jar or bottle)
Clear glue or glitter glue
Glitter (any colors you like)
A few drops of food coloring