UHURU means freedom! Freedom from what and into what?
How can we teach ourselves and our children to be more observant? Learning how to focus, pay attention, self-regulate, create and cultivate curiosity while building and maintaining a growing sense of self and others is our aim. We hold words and concepts like compassion, choice, kindness, strength, wisdom out to everyone; from the 2 year old to the teenager to us as adults.
There are simple, tangible methods of understanding and growing the capacity for internal empowerment. That is what we are about.
Children’s meditation is one way we get there.
Partnering with you as their teacher or parent or care-giver is another.
Creating safe and reliable community, nurturing and championing that which is possible, claiming the strengths of childlikeness and incorporating them in all we do is what The Children’s Meditation Club does!
We will start officially in May with our yearly themes; that will take us on the journey through our body and senses and beyond.
Stepping, skipping, or hopping into April; let me hold out some activities that you and your child and family or classroom can all do together.
Empowering the Body, Equipping the Heart and Mind.
- Create space where the children can feel what it feels like to be in their own body.
- Standing alongside their desk. ((Variations if a child can’t stand; use words to empower them to feel themselves in their seat. Use blocks or books or blankets to bring the floor up to them if while sitting their feet hang in the air.)
- Tell the child, “Put your feet hips distance apart. Roll your shoulders down your back. Tuck your chin. Lift at the crown of your head.” What are you doing? You are inviting them down into their physical person. Grounding is essential for all of us. Standing with intention is a powerful way that we can step into this sensation. IT can be done in the classroom, conference room, grocery store; sitting down or standing. It gives us a sense of ourselves in space.
- Next invite them into the experience. “Tune in!” Starting with awareness. They tune in all the time, as do we! What we are tuning into is the question. Invite them to tune into themselves. This is what I say, but you can find your own words. “Feel the soles of your feet underneath you, feel the ground underneath the soles of your feet.”
- Tune in continues… Breath! Remind them to stand feet hips distance apart, shoulders rolled back, chin tucked, and head feeling pulled up by an imaginary string. Then continue onward building upon the physical stance. “Roll your arms open so that the palms of your hands face me (or outward). Arms to the sides, now take a big breath in through your nose rising your arms up until your hands come and meet over your head. Arms are long and strong, hands over your head.” (If the children are really young, I will have them clap their hands together at this point.) Have them then blow the breath out from their mouths, as they bring their hands down to heart center.
- Tune in… Intention! Answering the question, what are they tuning into? (If you desire to take this step further into an activity.) That is a great question to have as a dialogue with older kids! At Living Mangaliso our goal for all of us is a healthy, developed and developing sense of self; we implement our passion for this reality in many ways. A daily tuning in activity is one of them. They are standing with their feet hips distance apart, their shoulders rolled down their back, their chin tucked and their head lifted; their hands are at heart center, now… comes the utterance. I want them tuning into the reality that they are indeed an amazement. They are worth celebrating. Using language and the power of articulation, to communicate into all of our ears and hearts, that there is worth and value within the human being is our passion. The first statement we make together, they repeat after me or you as the case may be! “Repeat after me, ‘I’ ‘am’ ‘an’ ‘amazement.’” I have them do this with the arm movement, hands arising, breath entering at least twice if not three times. Each time I reply; “yes, yes you are, let us say it again.”