Meditation & Children

Children both need and find it fun to meditate, relaxing, grounding - Monya Faugli - Mental Professionals, Dietikon, Zürich
Children both need and find it fun to meditate.

Meditation is a technique for health and welfare that has a major impact on everyone. It's not enough for us to just take care of the body. It is also good to take care of the mind.

 

Meditation has a big positive impact on growth and development in small children. It is proven that children who meditate get better grades at school. In addition to helping with the welfare of the child, it also improves their concentration, relaxation, creativity and resilience.

 

In today’s high-tech, fast-paced world with TV, internet, timetables full of activities, cell phones, it’s pretty easy to become over-stimulated.  All these forms of stress have come into the child's life as well. Therefore, we should not forget that these young children have an immature nervous system. It is difficult for them to process multiple stimuli at once.

Then, we send them off to school, where they are expected to concentrate and focus. Over-stimulated children may start to have problems when it comes to social, as well as language and motor skills. And of course, difficulty concentrating. These things can lead to trouble learning and behavior in the future. But through meditation they can balance and outweigh the negative effects of being overstimulated.

 

We all love our children and want the very best for them, so why not consider a tool that can help them become more mindful and better able to cope with all that is tossed into their world?

Meditation is a nice way to stay grounded. It helps us to be in the present moment so we can enjoy the good times and better managing the trying ones. It helps us to stay connected with our true essence, and build up our sense of self-love and worth.

 

Imagine learning these tools as a young child and then being able to use them your entire life. Meditation is catching on and currently being taught in a schools around the whole world today, and as a parent it would be good to both learn and teach this powerful tool.

 

"If every 8-year-old in the world learned meditation, we will eliminate violence from the world within a generation."
    
Dalai Lama

 


Advantages of childhood meditation

There are a lot of advantages for childhood meditation, but here I give you some that I think is important:

  • Helps them fall asleep, making sleep easier.
  • Reduces and helps to get rid of anxiety and fear.
  • Helps deal with daily stress.
  • Increases creative thinking.
  • Helps them control their frustration.
  • Improves concentration.
  • Strengthens their immune system.
  • Increases the speed of sensory and cognitive processing.
  • Helps improve their self esteem and confidence.
  • Increases control and lets them get rid of muscle aches or physical discomfort, which is usually part of this stage of constant growth.
  • Improves physical and emotional self-control and self-regulation, which helps them to be less impulsive.
  • Helps them to process their emotions.
  • Increases their academic achievement.
  • Helps them shape people who are more lovable and more connected to their surroundings and to other people.
  • Improves their social skills.
  • It increases the sense of empathy and gratitude.
  • Helps them confront their daily frustrations and difficulties.
  • Make them feel happier, which improves their mood.

For the youngest children - Do it simple

When children are going to perform meditation exercises, it is important to make it as easy as possible. You can create images that are easy to understand images and symbols of what to do.
For example, it is easy for them to understand how a bee buzzes, how a monkey plays or how a tree extends to the sky, and then the children will illustrate this.

The children are told to breathe through their noses, most children understand this easier than being told to breathe in and out with their stomachs. Also here you can use illustrations to both make it fun and to get them to understand.

For example, pretend to inflate a balloon or roar like a lion. Then they breathe deeply and calmly and they are concentrated.  This will calm them down and they feel that there is peace and quiet around them.

 

After this they are ready to mabye be like a frog which can sit completely still and look as if it is only concerned with the moment and its own breath, and you can go further in silence.

 


8 Meditations for children

Children of today are often troubled, disturbed and stressed. How can we help them calm down? How can we teach them to concentrate?

Here are some examples of simple exercises. Many of the exercises can be done on their own, but also with adults.

 

My Breath

To have good contact with the breath provides an incredible ability for self-regulation, and can help the children to relax and be present in the present. This exercise can help children get in touch with their breath.

 


The Turtle

In this exercise, the child will pretend to be a turtle hiding in the shell because the sun is setting. With this exercise, the child will relax in the muscles and mind at the same time.

 


The Buzzing Bee

Sometimes the world may seem big, busy and maybe a little scary. This exercise can help children land on their own. A long exhale as we make here sends a message to the brain that you are calm and confident, and it positively affects mood and emotions. The sound of the bee breath creates vibrations, or sound waves inside our body. This also has a calming effect.

 


Hug Me

Sometimes there is nothing that can be as nourishing as a good hug. In this exercise, we hold the clamp a little longer than usual, so we have plenty of time to feel each other's warmth, breath and heartbeat. A firm and good hug promotes the feeling of being held and supported, and the production of good brain signaling substances that help the children to stress down, relax and feel good.

 


The Mountain

Everyone must learn to stand before they can walk, run, jump, dance or use their legs in other ways. But sometimes standing on your own can be difficult. This exercise reminds us that with good contact with the earth and good contact with the breath, we can stand strong as a mountain no matter how much it storms around us.

 


Gratitude

This exercise is great to do on the bedside at night. It helps children appreciate themselves and their surroundings, and reminds them that they are part of something bigger. Gratitude creates joy and satisfaction and is a wonderful way to end the day. In addition, there is a kind of summary of the day that can help children fall asleep with a calm mind and an open heart.

 


Your Own Place

Sometimes it can be nice to have a safe place all to yourself. A place where you are not disturbed and where you can be completely yourself. Here you become confident and aware of your own body and then be able to wander in your mind to a place you like very well or imagine.

 


The Frog

In this exercise, the child learns to sit completely still like a frog. Often it can be very difficult to just sit completely still without doing anything, but after a while it will be nice and relaxing to just do nothing. Learn to become aware of what the body is like when you are completely still and if there are any body parts that are still moving.

 


On courses you can learn more Meditation for children,

and also simple Yoga positions.

 


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