Every year at the end of October, the Yoga Garden community begins to meditate on their Year in a Word. Word that will we will carry forward into the next year, not so much a resolution but a beacon towards which we are always moving. Once our words are chosen Laurel creates these beautiful flags to add to Yoga Garden’s puja.
This year, the youngest of our community were invited to join us in this amazing tradition! I had a great time, helping the students in Yoga Garden Kids Club think about and create their own word flags to add to the wall. I thought it would be super obvious which were the kids’ words but it turns out, it isn’t. These kids were so thoughtful and earnest when it came to their final choices!
The next Kids Club session starts January 26, 2017, each session in 5 weeks long! It is $45 for the full session. Classes are Thursday 4:30-5:15pm at Yoga Garden.
We just finished up another Yoga Garden Kids Club session! Our theme started out being Balance, and turned quickly into, How to balance trying to do our best and being comfortable asking for help”. Instead of relying on the words, I can’t do it. Even adults do this, they see a pose that is more bendy or requires more strength and the words that pop into our head first is usually, I can’t do that. For the kids, I noticed that they would say the words aloud… but then do their version of the pose brilliantly! (There are probably already million and one blog posts out there about the psychology behind that)
So, we made a new rule for Kids Club. They are no longer allowed to say “I can’t do it” until they have tried, then if they need help. They may say “I can’t do it YET” and we will work together as a team to find their version!
In our discussion/meditation time, we had really great conversations about things we found hard to do, how we could help ourselves and how to ask for help. We talked a lot about what a Guru is and they enjoyed hearing that we are all a Guru. One of the easiest ways to begin learning from each other is Active Listening. We practiced turning towards and looking at whomever was speaking. As we spoke of every day topics, we practiced making space for each other to share. After a few classes of practicing this, I noticed that the children were bringing both topics together while doing our physical practice! If someone was struggling with a pose, we would stop, see and hear that person and then work together to find a modification.
It was really a joy to see and I am always so grateful that I started teaching kids. I learn so much.
Yoga Garden Kids Club is a yoga class for kids ages 6-9. It is 45 minutes long and in it we practice meditation, yoga postures, play games, tell stories and have a ton of fun! YGKC is offered in 5 week sessions. It is $45/ 5 week session. There are two time/day options for Kids Club. Thursday 4:30-5:15pm or Saturday 10:30-11:15am
The next session starts on November 10 for the Thursday option, and November 12 for the Saturday option. Our themes for the next session will Gratitude and we will also be thinking about and discussing what we want to take with us into the new year.
If you are interested in having your child join us for the next session, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
My kids and I share a beautiful meditation about gratitude and love. We hold hands, talk to each other about how each of us have gifts that are uniquely ours. How we can use these gifts to energize the universe and help others. At the end of the meditation, we breath, OM and state what we are grateful for in that moment. Deep things, like beauty in nature, past souls within us… that kind of stuff. We hug and then go on with our day feeling closer and good.
I bribe the kids with a snack to sit down with me. We DO hold hands, but I am instantly aware of the stickiness. We talk about our Super Powers (compromises were made on the verbage) and after a terrifyingly loud and long OM, their responses to what they are thankful for is Elliot’s “new remote control truck” and “that the dogs are still alive even though they are SO old and eat their poop”. They run off to play after a hug, and I feel like I need to meditate with a glass of wine.
Mindfulness in a family is hard to maintain when in the thick of increasingly busy schedules and their seeming unwillingness. Is it still meaningful? Yes. If everyday, we take a moment to notice the changing of the leaves, to think about what we are grateful for, to stop and breath… it becomes habit. One minute, a moment, Yes!
My expectations need to bend sometimes and that is okay. The result that I am hoping for looks different everyday. Some days we will snuggle and have deep conversation and others with will just meet eyes and smile.
A half hour after the above meditation attempt, June came up to me, gave me a hug and said that she was “thankful to have you as my mom too” and she was off again!