It´s no secret that the recent movie of COCO from Disney is a hit! So why not to make a kids’ or family yoga class with a COCO theme? Kids love to feel connected with characters and if they know the story they will happily participate.
If you don´t know or didn´t see COCO yet, it is a movie based on the traditions of Mexico’s “Day of the Dead”. So part of the yoga class can be an exploration of those traditions, along with movie highlights and characters. (I need to warn you this text contains spoilers!). Re-tell the movie’s story while using the characters and situations as poses.
Start by pretending we are going to the movie theatre and after we buy some popcorn (popcorn squats) we search for our chair (chair pose) and wait till the movie begins. (TV pose)
Then the screen goes to black and it all begins. The principal character is a boy named Miguel and he is always with his pet Dante, a dog (downward and upward dog).
He loves to play the guitar. Kidding Around Yoga has a song called, “Blow Your Horn” that would be fun to play here since Mariachi bands often have a trumpet player. Miguel wanted to win a music competition to prove he was an awesome guitarist. However there was problem: in his family, music was forbidden by his grandmother because his great great grandfather left his family to pursue his musical dreams.
This would be a good time to play some traditional Mexican guitar music, with children pretending to play guitar while in all sorts of yoga postures. You could print out pictures of guitars or just have kids use their imaginations.
Miguel was desperate to get a guitar for the competitio and he remembered that there was one on the tomb of a very famous artist. He ran quickly to the cemetery which was open because on “Day of the Dead” people go to the cemetery to spend the night with the family members that aren´t here anymore. People take flowers (flower pose individually and in group) and everything seems lightened by the many candles (candle pose) that are shining. It is a very beautiful tradition, because you can remember the ones you loved in a positive way. That is kind of yogic, don´t you think? While we practice candle pose, maybe you can think of someone special that you haven’t seen in a while?
After Miguel took the guitar something magical happened! He started seeing the dead ones! He could talk to them and they could see him too! But, he started vanishing from the Alive World. To break the spell he needed to cross a bridge (bridge pose) to the Dead´s City.
While he was in the Dead’s City, Miguel wanted to meet his great great grandfather, the musician. Miguel met a man named Hector, who told him that he was going to take him to meet his great great grandfather, if, when Miguel gets back to the real world he will put his photo in an offering on that Day of the Dead so he can still exist, otherwise he will disappear forever.
So after a few adventures together, Miguel found out that Hector was his great great grandfather! Miguel hurried up to pass quickly through the bridge (bridge pose) to the Alive World without Hector´s photograph, but Miguel had an idea. He went to Coco´s room and start singing the song (you all can sing the song here) that Hector used to play her when she was a child, and to his surprise Coco had a photograph of Hector! Everything worked perfectly! At the end his family understood that they couldn’t keep him from his real passion and Miguel started enjoying music again.
If you have more time in the class you also can add the parts where the animals are like some spirit guides or alebrijes. We can see in the movie a jaguar and many other type of animals, so we can make the asanas of every animal.
Finally, we can talk to the kids about the message of forgiveness that the movie shows. How wonderful it is to appreciate all the people and animals we have in our lives.