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Introducing Children to Yoga Through Storytelling

Today Monique Barker is with us to share some fun and engaging ways to introduce yoga to children…

We all know that children love to move, make noise, and get creative. Children also love a good story. So… why not combine the two? Practicing yoga with children lends itself so well to story-telling, whether it’s your own story or through books. And reading or telling a story as an introduction to a yoga sequence is a comfortable way for children to prepare for something new and helps provide a visual to engage them in creative movement. Playful Learning: Introducing Yoga Through Storytelling

Reading to and with your children supports literacy and language skills, listening and critical thinking skills. Storytelling is a wonderful way to pass on traditions and preserve cultures, teach values and lessons, and to work out emotions, conflicts or challenges in a safe way. Yoga enhances flexibility, strength, coordination, and body awareness and can improve concentration, instill a sense of calm and create a deeper connection to one’s inner-self and the world around them.

Combining movement with storytelling actively engages children, immersing them in the experience in a more meaningful way. Their imaginations will be stimulated and enriched. It will allow them to reinterpret the text or spoken words and bring it to life in a creative, personal way. It will even enhance and increase neural connections in the areas of the brain responsible for memory and learning!

Playful Learning: Introducing Yoga to Children Through Storytelling

If you would like to give it a try, here are some yoga sequences that I have put together (tested and approved by preschoolers and early elementary school age children!) with suggested books to go along. Do feel free to choose your own favorite, age-appropriate stories.

As you become more familiar with yoga poses, use your creativity when applying them. There’s no reason why ‘down-dog’ couldn’t also represent a hill or a slide or an inchworm!

I hope you and the children in your life enjoy and continue to explore yoga through storytelling (or is it storytelling through Yoga?)!

Playful Learning: Introducing Yoga to Children Through Storytelling

Note: Before starting yoga with young children, I suggest…

  • Familiarizing them with breathing techniques, always inhaling and exhaling through the nose unless otherwise specified.
  • Discussing the importance of respecting personal space and keeping ourselves and others safe from injury.
  • Beginning with gentle stretches and a few deep breathes.

More Yoga & Storytelling Inspiration…

Books

Online

Importance of Storytelling

If you would like to learn more about the craft of storytelling, below are some lovely posts. Remember, you don’t need special training or much experience. It can be as simple as telling a story from your childhood, reciting a fable, or crafting your own unique story with your children. Have fun with it.

Literacy and Language Skills

Movement & Learning

 

Monique

Monique Barker is an empowered mama, homeschooling superstar, and Early Intervention Specialist. Sharing her love of nature and healthy living keeps Monique creating rich learning experiences for students around the world. She holds a BA in Psychology from the University of Southern Maine and a Counseling Certification from the University of New England. When she’s not mothering her three lovelies, Monique enjoys hiking, getting crafty, long days at the beach, and quiet time with her husband and cat at their home in Maine. You can enjoy more of her work over at, Green Acorns.

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  1. A great post!  I really enjoy sharing yoga with my boys, I’ll be checking out more of these links and ideas to enhance our circle time when we kick off with school again in September.  Thanks for the inspiration!

  2. Hi, there. Great post! So glad I found it. I hope you don’t mind if I include this post in a feature on my blog in the next couple of day. Every month I round up blog posts related to children’s literature and movement. I think your themes of storytelling and yoga will fit right in! (www.kerryaradhya.blogspot.com)

  3. I love this article and totally agree that using stories is a great way to introduce kids to yoga and so many different concepts. You may be interested that I have just had published a unique new type of kid’s activity book, combining yoga, with mindfulness techniques, visualisations and meditations. For ages 6-11. Alongside the story is a range of activities to nurture, mind, body and soul, ranging from yoga poses, breathing exercises, games, dance, song, guided visualisation to massage exercises. The story and activities have been written and illustrations designed in a style that is easy to follow whilst at the same time providing scope for children to add their imagination and creativity. ISBN: 978-1-78279-819-4

    You can read more about it on the illustrator’s blog http://souls-heart.blogspot.co.uk/search/label/yoga

    Enjoy!

“Playful Learning’s blend of visual materials, video, informative articles, and useable printouts made this workshop invaluable and well worth the investment. Really, I wish this would never end. I can’t wait to sign up for the next workshop, no matter what the content!”

-Sommer

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