I believe it's never too early to start teaching kids about Meditation. In the Alluem Kids 4-7 year olds class today, I had the kids do an arts and crafts project to help them learn about what Meditation is all about. I started by having them tell me what Meditation means to them. One told me, "It means you clear your head.". Another told me, "It's just like praying." Kids get it. They may not be able to sit still for too long with their thoughts, but they don't have to! They don't need a dark room with a candle and quiet music. A meditative state is natural for a young child. They are naturally more imaginative and creative. For instance, they get what it means to relate a color to a feeling. As adults we sometimes forget to activate this imaginative part of our brain, and over time it becomes harder and harder to do so. Which is why I am a strong believer of keeping an active imagination and always staying young at heart!So, why Owls? Owls are wise animals. It just seemed right to pick an Owl. Using the construction paper, I cut out the shapes for the kids to glue together. They then traced their hands to use as the wings. On each of the fingers we wrote a common Mantra, "Sa, Ta, Ma, Na" (See Bog Post: Yoga Mudras). On the belly of the owl, I wrote a little poem for them:
(To the tune of Twinkle Twinkle Little Star)
Sit up tall. Close your eyes.
Hands on knees. Heart to the sky.
Deep breath out. Deep breath in.
Just relax and look with in.
(then incorporate the mantra)
Sa, Ta, Ma, Na,
Sa, Ta, Ma, Na
Hearing them sing this was just adorable. Knowing they took home a skill that may help them throughout their lives, is even more beautiful.