This book is part of the Reading Is Fundamental (RIF) Social Emotional Learning Collection
FREE resources, including puzzles and word games, designed to enhance both literacy skills and socioemotional engagement of young readers


"Mom, I can't sleep!"
"Why not?"
"I don't know...I'm nervous and I can't stop thinking, thinking, thinking..."
"Do you want me to teach you how to breathe?"
"Breathe? But I already know how to breathe!"
"But have you ever stopped to see how you do it? Where the air comes in and out? If it fills more of your belly or your chest? If you are doing it slowly or quickly?"

Breathe is a conversation between a boy and his mother at bedtime. But this conversation can happen at any time, in any place.

This introduction to mindfulness presents a collection of illustrated exercises to help little ones become aware of their breath and their body.

Includes a Note to Parents & Caregivers that describes the exercises and their effects in more detail.

Reviews & Awards

Author Inês Castel-Branco’s illustrations are joyful, peaceful and simply beautiful. Readers will feel the positive energy flowing from the boy just by studying each illustration and the exercise he is attempting.
Children’s Books Heal

With practice, the child discovers how these tools can rob fear and sadness of their power to keep us awake at night. This book speaks to children with the confidence that they can understand how and why attention to our breath is so powerful.

When raising children with ADHD, anxiety, and/or intense emotions, calming strategies are a must. Kids may resist when you tell them to breathe, or they may not know how to breathe in a way that will calm the body. That's the genius behind Breathe: They won't know that the fun they're having with their imagination is actually practicing mindfulness.

Additional Tabs

Inês Castel-Branco was born in Lisbon and lived for many years in a small city in the interior of Portugal that shares her name: Castelo Branco.

She loved to play the piano. She also spent many vacations drawing in a notepad, discovering her own distinct methods of painting, and learning to take photos with her father's antique Canon.

At 18 years old, she went to study architecture in Oporto (also in Portugal). Later, curiosity led her to study abroad in Barcelona, Spain. It was only supposed to be for a year, but she liked the city so much that she stayed another year to do a master's degree, then a doctorate, and wound up doing a thesis on the theatre of the '60s. During all of this, she decided to found Fragmenta Editorial with Ignasi Moreta, and so submerged herself in the fascinating world of the typography and layout of books.

With the birth of their three children, Inês returned to making models (now of castles, zoos, doll houses...), and they discovered the marvels that can be made with recycled objects (which are explained on Inês's blog, "Mamá recicla"). Their love of children's books also grew, until they decided to start this collection.

One morning, during breakfast, she "saw" in her mind the book that you now have in your hands, and she once again took up her brushes and painted.