Saturday, August 21, 2010

Kids Meditation: Creative Intentions

Amelie & the dolly of loving-kindness
I've had a slew of emails and comments lately from mamas who would like turn their kids onto a meditation practice.  Something I've discovered is that keeping it fun, short and on their level is absolutley essential.  It also helps if you bring a little creativity to the zafu. 

Try this exercise with your kids to nurture their creativity while setting an intention for the day.  Ask your child to sit with his or eyes closed and take a few normal breaths.  Encourage him to listen for all of the sounds he can hear and notice all of the things he feels.  Keep in mind that kids can usually sit for as many minutes as they are old -- but don't be too rigid about this.  Then invite him to look within for a totem to "bring back" and keep with him throughout the day.  Some of our favorites have been the love-bugs of compassion and the dolly of loving-kindness.

Younger children might enjoy creating a story with his or her totem and acting it out using natural toys and play-silks.  This totem is a useful tool for reminding us to act mindfully. 

If you are participating in our 14 Day Meditation Challenge, consider adding this exercise to your daily routine.  If you are a homeschooling family, consider adding this to your morning circle.  If you try this practice with your kids, be sure to come back here and share your experience with us.   Much gratitude and peace to all.
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