Make a Multi-sensory Breathing Pinwheel

Conscious Discipline Certified Instructor Stephanie Holmes guides you through making a breathing pinwheel with household items. This do-it-yourself pinwheel provides important multisensory feedback to children as they breathe in to smell the flower and breathe out to make the pinwheel spin.

Three deep belly breaths help shut off the stress response in the body. Help children master this essential calming skill by making a fun do-it-yourself pinwheel you can use to practice deep breathing together.

Composure is a foundational skill in Conscious Discipline. Children require plenty of deep breathing and composure practice during times of calm in order to be able to access these skills when they are upset.

The breathing pinwheel provides multisensory feedback to help children learn to breathe deeply. To take a deep belly breath, the belly extends outward as you inhale. Then, exhale about twice as long as you bring your belly in to push all the air out. It is essential that this breathing movement come through the lungs, diaphragm and belly. A shallow, top-of-the-lungs breath or a breath that only moves the shoulders will be ineffective for calming the body and mind.

This breathing pinwheel is based on the S.T.A.R. Breathing Tool from Conscious Discipline. The do-it-yourself version featured here was created with permission from Conscious Discipline.

**Please note that a straight pin is required for this do-it-yourself project, so it is not suitable for young children and should only be used with adult supervision.**

Webinar Outline

  • 00:02 Introduction
  • 00:40 Begin with a square
  • 01:10 Mark the square
  • 02:00 Cut along the marks
  • 02:30 Fold the corners in
  • 02:50 Pin the center
  • 03:05 Place the bead
  • 03:22 Attach the stick
  • 04:10 Attach the flower
  • 04:36 Demonstration


  • Card stock or thick paper recycled from cracker boxes or glossy magazines
  • Pen or pencil for marking
  • Ruler (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Stick
  • Small bead
  • Straight pin
  • Real or artificial flower
  • Tape

Resource Mentions

Helpful Next Steps