Tuesday, June 14, 2011

OHMazing Choices

Meredith celebrates
teaching Yogiños class
The Yogiños for Youth training focuses on teaching children interdisciplinary skills through yoga and interactive themes to teach more than just the poses (asana). The method also creatively uses the Patanjali's Yoga Sutras 8-limbed (Ashtang) approach to integrate mind, body and spirit for the child. I was just blown away by the simplicity of designing a kid's class and how aplicabile it's going to be in my adult classes. Some days it feels like it's all about the flow or sequencing, and I have to remind myself that teaching elements and themes for a great class can be simple, direct and seriously fun.


The concept that resinated with me most from this training was: How do can I teach kids to make "OHMazing choices" in their lives? I think as a mom and teacher, this is one of the greatest challenges I face. I can't of anything that I desire more than for my kids to become joyful, healthy, well functioning adults. (I also want them to love God and cultivate a life of service and million other things... but for them to find joy in life, that would put the icing on my cake.) When I can start by helping them to get out of their own little sphere and see that there is a big-wide-astonishing world out there and while taking good care of themselves is vital, the universe does not just revolve around their own needs... ah, then, then I think I've taught them a little something.


Often when I ask son #2 who's 5 to help put groceries away or clean the kitchen, he's suddenly too tired and needs to lie down. (Geez, me too!) So when a neighbor asked him to take care of his plants and collect his mail while he's away, I was surprised at the consideration and attention he's giving to this project. It's helpful that my neighbor put his mail key on a cool flashlight keychain (he's memorized with it as if it's the greatest toy invented). He's so eager that I have to tell him, "nope, we cannot water the plants again today, we can't even water them until a few more days. You see, little man, too much water will actually be harmful... you have to balance just the right amount of water to keep it not only alive but thriving."And then another theme for a kids' yoga class begins out of real life... just like plants need the right amount of nourishment, so do we. 


I asked son #2 what Yoga means, he said it "yoga makes my body feel good." Wow, not what I was expecting. I thought he'd say, yoga keeps my mommy too busy, yoga (i.e. stretching) hurts.... but that it makes him feel good, that was such a sweet reward for me as a mom and teacher. I hope to equip my boys to make those "OHMazing choices" so that they really can feel good in their bodies, hearts, and minds. Isn't that what we desire to give our children? Things that are best for them and things that make them ultimately feel good about themselves and those they are able to serve.

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