Meditation And Yoga

Mindful Crafts & Activities For Happy Kids

Finding meaningful ways to engage children in becoming aware of and exploring their emotions is an important step towards raising confident, happy kids.  And the last few weeks the kids and I filled our time together breathing deep, talking about our emotions and playing!  I would like to share some of the wonderful projects we did that helped us engage our whole-selves, become aware of our emotions and find ways to center ourselves.

These projects are perfect to do with young children and even have complete lesson plans for those of you working with a group of kids.  Most of the projects have a bit of science thrown in while all of them offer kid-approved fun and creativity!

An Aromatic State Of Mind

Conduct a science experiment with essential oils to see what oils insight certain feelings.  Then create a unique piece of art work inspired by an aroma of your choice!

Happiness

Happiness inspired by sweet orange essential oil.

Flower ‘n’ Spice Play Dough Mandalas

Create a beautiful fragrant meditative mandala from lovely botanicals.

Flowers, spices and berries pressed into a base of lavender scented playdough for a calming, centering activity.

Flowers, spices and berries pressed into a base of lavender-scented play dough for a calming, centering activity.

Meditation Friends

Create a special mind jar with a friendly face.  This project helps kids learn to breathe and slow down with they feel out of sorts.

Silly friends for helping kids center themselves.

Silly friends for helping kids center themselves.

Meditation Friends II

A special twist on Meditation Friends that allows for even more personalization of your child’s special new friend!

New colorful friends with lots of kid chosen personalitiy.

New colorful friends with lots of kid chosen personality.

Yoga Play With Babar’s Yoga For Elephants

Simple yoga play with a favorite elephant!  We used this super fun book to guide us through a morning of giggly yoga.

Silly yoga fun!


Do you have any special ways to help kids learn about emotions or mindful ways of how to engage themselves?  I would love to hear about them and give them a try!

Wishing you lots of peaceful fun!

Advertisements
Categories: Aromatherapy For Kids, Fun Crafts, Herbal Tips And Tricks, Herbs For Kids and Mamas, Lesson Plans For Preschool And Home, Meditation And Yoga, Mindful Self Care, Practices For Intentional Living | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Meditations Friends II ~ The New Kids On The Block

Last year I made these silly centering Meditation Friends with the kiddos at the preschool.  We had so much fun that we decided to make them again but with a new twist to make them even more engaging and personable.  Just like last year started our day reading Peaceful Piggy Meditation which introduces the idea of a meditation jar.  On we went from there to make our own special meditation jars with personality!  

These helpful friends are based on an activity at the end of this amazing, fun book. My six-year-old loves this book. We re-read it often when she is going through a hard time in her life and it seems to really speak to her.

buddies

New to the idea of a meditation jar?  Here is how it works  ~

A meditation, or mind jar, is a jar filled with liquid, like water and glitter.  The child shakes the jar which sends the glitter spinning and spiraling.  The glitter is like a busy mind, and mind full of thoughts maybe even negative thoughts that swirls and feels crazy.  Has the glitter settles down and the child watches it breathing deep into their belly, they can focus on the glitter and let their mind settle down.

These new kids on the block have a special something added to them~ we created layers in the bottle by adding oil colored with a bit of food coloring to the water.  This makes it take longer for the contents to settle down giving the child more time to breathe and calm down.  It also makes the liquid a bit more sparkly.

swirling sparkles

Swirling Mind

What you need to make your own ~

  • Bottle or Jar with water tight lid (I used plastic water bottles to prevent breakage but glass would work fine as well.)
  • Water
  • Oil
  • Food Coloring
  • Glitter or Glitter Glue (Glitter glue will make it take longer for the “thoughts” to settle down.  Use warm water if you choose to use glue)
  • Googly Eyes
  • Decorations (We used peel and stick foamies)
  • Ribbon or Yarn
  • Fabric Scraps
  • Hot Glue Gun

creation

Instructions ~

  • Fill the bottle half/half with water/oil, or you can vary the amounts ~ we did more water than oil with our friends.  
  • Ask the child to pick out their favorite color from the food colors and add a drop or two to the bottle.  The oil and water, of course, won’t mix and the food coloring will color one layer giving you a nice contrast and making it more exciting to shake the meditation friend and to watch it settle down.  
  • Next add glitter or glitter glue and secure the bottle shut.
  • Then have the child decorate their bottle to look like a face with googly eyes and any other materials you have on hand.  I like to use peel and stick foamies because, well, they are easy!    You can also glue on the face but plan for drying time and that the faces may fall of fast.
  • Finally give the new friend a hat by securing a piece of cloth on top of the bottle with hot glue and ribbon or yarn.

Easy Peasy!

friends   Shared On:  It’s Playtime!, Kid’s Coop, Kid’s Get Arty

Categories: Lesson Plans For Preschool And Home, Meditation And Yoga, Mindful Self Care, Parenting | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Babar’s Yoga for Elephants

An Original Laurent De Brunhoff Book

A couple of years ago, I spied this awesome book peaking its binding out of a shelf at one of my favorite used book stores.  I loved Babar as a child and my child loves yoga, so this was a win-win.  I brought Babar’s Yoga home with me and wrapped it up for my little one’s Valentine’s surprise, a total gift of love.  Immediately upon opening the book she wanted me to read it and with in moments we were both giggling, breathing and doing yoga together.  As I said this was a couple of years ago; she loved the book then and still loves it, keeping it bedside along with a few other precious books.

Babar’s Yoga for Elephants also made a trip to the preschool with me as part of our unit on Mindful Self Care.  The kids and I read though it, having a blast stretching and rolling around on the floor together.  We took a few moments here and there with hands on our bellies to take big deep breaths and center ourselves.  When we were all done I checked in with the kids to see how they were feeling.  I found them calm and centered.  We even had a few moments of silence before they went off on their way which is saying something!

The book starts off with a bit about the elephant’s history of yoga and then quickly catches up to modern-day Babar who describes how he uses yoga in his life.  He offers multiple yoga routines with fun to see illustrations of an elephant doing yoga.  My daughter enjoys setting up the book so she can follow the pictures and do yoga all by herself!

Shared On: Kid Lit Blog Hop, It’s Playtime!, Kid’s Get Crafty

Categories: Lesson Plans For Preschool And Home, Meditation And Yoga, Mindful Self Care, Parenting, Practices For Intentional Living | Tags: , , | 6 Comments

Cultivating Sacred Space

Nourishing Mama Mission One ~

This is the first week of my mission to reclaim my health, my creativity and well, my self!  For this mission the focus is on cultivating sacred space in daily life.  It is so important to me to have some time by myself without kids around.  Time to have my own thoughts, to reflect and just be me.  Perhaps all parents aren’t like me, I really don’t know about other people’s experiences.  I just know that this special time even if just for a few minutes helps me be a better mom and a better me.  If this mission calls to you, please join me and cultivate your own sacred space.

The mountain and me ~

When my first daughter was born I found the tremendous effort of taking care of newborn shockingly overwhelming.  I mean really didn’t know what I was in for!  At the time we lived in a tiny mountain town up high near the Continental Divide in Colorado.  It was absolutely beautiful.  My bright sunny kitchen window opened up to a huge mountain peak all covered in tundra and sparkly snow.  Strong, steady and ever quietly present that mountain became my friend.  Every morning after feeding and diapering my newborn baby, after sweet kisses and snuggles accompanied by my exhaustion from begin up at all hours, I would sit at my table drinking tea and communing with the mountain.  As my precious baby napped next to me in her swing, I let the mountain’s presence fill me up and anchor me in my new life as a mother while breathing in steamy herbal tea vapors.  This ritual only lasted a month or so until things changed as they do with parenting, but it taught me something.  It taught me to take advantage of those little moments of rejuvenation and to let them fill me up.

my mountain

Well, I did learn but I also forgot ~

Yet, I forgot and forget to take this time for myself each day.  The years since those lovely mornings at my kitchen table have found me here and there reclaiming sacred space for myself yet inevitably then something happens as life with my kids again changes and I lose my footing, I lose my way.  I notice that I am lost when I start to feel disconnect from my inner guidance and yes, I even get snappy with my kids.  It is ok though because this is how life goes and what matters is getting back to what feels right.

My sacred space ~

My favorite time to rejuvenate and center myself is in the morning right after I get out of bed.  The times in my life when I have gotten up consistently to take care of myself right away in the morning have been some of the best of my life.  I have energy and am focused, ready for the day to start.  My favorite thing to do in the morning?  Yoga.  Through yoga I connect with my body and my breath.  I feel better all the way down to my spirit.  Because I am a bit out of sync right now with yoga I am starting small.  Just 20 to 30 minutes max of a nice routine followed by writing in my journal for one page.  That is it.  Then I go on with my day.  I have done this for about 4 days so far and plan to continue.  In two weeks I will re-evaluate, see how I am doing and hopefully expand my practice.  So far, so good.  It feels wonderful to know that by the time my kids get up I have already taken care of me.  Some how those morning hugs become even more precious than before!

Any time is a good time ~

Do you cultivate time and space for yourself in your daily life?  What works for you?  I know that some folks do their best at night while others like me find the morning the best time for connecting and rejuvenating.  If you need time to take care of you, please join me on this little mission.  Let me know how you are doing.  What are you doing during your time?

Want to create your own sacred space?  

Here are some ideas ~

Some of these take only a few moments while others require more of a time investment.  Finding what works best for you is the important thing.

  • take a bath
  • take a walk
  • hit the gym
  • meditate
  • pray
  • have a cup of tea
  • sit for a few minutes and picture what you want from you day
  • take a few deep cleansing breathes
  • read
  • draw a picture
  • create a daily affirmation
  • just BE still and quiet with yourself
  • watch the sunrise or sunset

Blessings and Love!

More Please…

Nourishing Mama Mission Home Page Mama On A Mission ~ Introduction

Nourishing Mama Mission Two ~ Attitude of Gratitude ~ The Start of the Day

Nourishing Mama Mission Three ~ The Art of Bathing

Nourishing Mama Mission Four ~ Herbal Infusions, Healthful Simplicity

Categories: Mama Care And Empowerment, Meditation And Yoga, Natural Family Care, Nourishing Mama Mission, Parenting, Practices For Intentional Living | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Meditation Friends

Inspired by the excitement over the snowglobes we made earlier this year, I decided we should try another watery glitter project.  This one has a different purpose than to capture a bit of whimsical winter in a bottle.  Taking a cue from one of my family’s favorite books, Peaceful Piggy Meditation, we decided to make special meditation jars with personality!

This was a simple happy project.  First we read our Piggy Meditation book.  We talked about how sometimes our minds just won’t stop thinking or maybe we feel really sad or angry.  We talked about how taking a few deep breaths and finding a calm place inside ourselves can help us to feel better.  Then I showed the kids a Meditation Friend that I had made as an example for our project.   I shook it up and explained that the glitter swirling around inside is like our thoughts when they are overwhelming or angry or sad.  Next we took a few deep breaths while watching the glitter settle down in the jar, and while feeling our thoughts settle inside our minds.  We played with the Meditation Friend pretending it was mad or just had too many thoughts by shaking it up and then we helped our friend calm down with some big, deep breaths.

After our discussion each kid made their own Meditation Friend.

What you need to make your own ~

  • Bottle or Jar with water tight lid (I used plastic water bottles to prevent breakage but glass would work fine as well.)
  • Water
  • Glitter or Glitter Glue (Glitter glue will make it take longer for the “thoughts” to settle down.  Use warm water if you choose to use glue)
  • Googly Eyes
  • Decorations (We used peel and stick foamies)
  • Ribbon or Yarn
  • Fabric Scraps

Simply place water and glitter in the bottle and secure shut.  Then have the child decorate their bottle to look like a face with googly eyes and any other materials you have on hand.  I used peel and stick foamies because, well, they are easy!  Then give the new friend a hat by securing a piece of cloth on top of the bottle with ribbon or yarn.  Easy Peasy!

 In the days following this project, I had a number of the students who made these tell me that they used it when they felt sad or lonely or mad and, that it helped!  Yeah!

Please Note:  This activity was based on an activity at the end of this amazing, fun book.  My six-year-old loves this book.  We re-read it often when she is going through a hard time in her life and it seems to really speak to her.

Peaceful Piggy Meditation

Shared On: Kid Lit Blog Hop

Categories: Lesson Plans For Preschool And Home, Meditation And Yoga, Mindful Self Care, Parenting | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: