Hobbies and Taking Meaningful Breaks

Studies have shown that taking brain breaks during the school day has many benefits for student learning. These benefits include improved cognitive functioning, increased motivation and ability to sustain focus for academic work

Periodical physical activity breaks can enhance your learning and behaviour. Energiser activities can also increase blood flow and epinephrine levels when you’re drowsy, and reduce restlessness. Movement can reinforce learning, enhance memory and retrieval, and improve motivation and morale. When you exercise, you’re causing the brain to fire signals along the same network of cells involved in cognitive functions, which solidifies their connections. (Institute of Positive Education)

Brain breaks that are less physical in nature are also beneficial to your wellbeing. For example, meditation can give you a sense of calm, peace and balance that can benefit both your emotional wellbeing and your overall health. These benefits don’t end when your meditation session ends. Meditation can help carry you more calmly through your day. (Mayo Clinic)

Outside of the school day hobbies allow you to destress, find enjoyment, balance your time, and grow your confidence. Seeing improvement in a skill related to your hobby (playing guitar, crocheting, photography, anything) can be a huge mood booster. Hobbies also allow you to look forward to something on a regular basis, which has great benefits for your mood and ability to cope with stress and negative emotions.

Explore more music

There is a lot of different music out there. Take some time to explore music and possibly find some new artists/bands that you may enjoy.

Choose a new hobby

Learn a new language, learn how to play the guitar, explore photography, try cooking or baking, or reading for pleasure. The list is endless!

Knitting or Crocheting

The repetitive movements don’t require much thinking once you get the hang of it. It is a great way to minimize stress and it can be rewarding to see your project come together. Check out Sheep and Stitch for lessons and videos.


Puzzles like jigsaw puzzles, crosswords, word finds, sudoku are fun and rewarding plus they can relieve stress by giving your mind something else to focus on.

Mindful Movements/Stretching

Stretching and movement are good for loosening up the body, releasing stress, and allowing creativity.

Get Artistic

Paint, Draw, doodle, write poems/songs or build. Choose anything that takes you away from your academic work and allows your mind to wander.

Do nothing for 2 minutes

It may sound simple, but it is not. Just sit there for two minutes doing nothing. This break gives rest to the brain for a few minutes.


The benefits of Yoga for mind and body are endless. Not only can you build physical strength but you can also reduce anxiety and stress, improve focus and sleep better. Whether you’re just starting out, or you are a seasoned pro, there’s something for everyone out there.

Have a Dance Party

Choose a fun song, turn it up loud and hit the remote learning dance floor. Invite some friends to your dance party and teach each other some groovy dance moves!