Breathing Techniques to Calm

Visual guides for breathing techniques to help students self-regulate.

Breathing Technique to Calm 1

Breathing Technique to Calm 1

Circular breathing

Breathing Technique to Calm 2

Breathing Technique to Calm 2

Square breathing

When to use:

  • Use as part of a self-management system.
  • Use to help focus.
  • Use to help de-escalate.


  • If you have a break or cool down area in your classroom, try posting the visuals there.
  • Provide visuals to the home environment as well.

How to teach:

  1. Show the student a calming breathing visual at a time when they are not upset.
  2. Model using the visual by tracing the path with your finger and following the instructions for inhaling and exhaling.
  3. Ask the student to practice using the visual, helping them move their finger along the path as needed. Explain how deep, slow breaths can send a message to the brain that helps the body relax, calm their mind, and facilitate emotional regulation. Tell them that this is something they can do quietly at any time during the day.


Breathing Square, Lazy 8


Print This Tool