February is the month of love. The greeting card companies have a hay day! The colors pink, red, white, and purple get worn out. And everyone overdoses on chocolate and those little candy hearts with messages on them. Last year I wrote a blog on the history of Valentine’s Day and how to share it with the children in your life, along with a heart mandala. This year I thought I would share some ideas for the yoga teachers, parents, school teachers, and babysitters who may want to add some Valentine flare to their activities with children this month. I hope you enjoy them and the time spent with your little ones leaves you both feeling full of Love.
February Theme Class Idea:
Story idea: Use our “Book BLISS” from the Kidding Around Yoga Training. But pretend they are Valentine cards. Talk about the different kinds of cards they will make/send/receive. Even go around and have the kids share WHO they are sending a special Valentine to. From Haris: “What’s your valentine say? Let’s open it up! The kids can then proceed to open the cards, close the cards, turn the page, etc. using their legs, feet, hands, and whole body for those BIG cards!”
Salutation creation: You can use the song here because of the chorus “Om Nimah Shivaya, Let your love shine through…” Or you can create your own salutation to include some heart opening poses! Of course, those can be done later in class.
Hearts hide & seek
The kids walk around with eyes closed and arms extended in front. Try to find each other, just touch fingertips, say Namaste (or something sweet), and move on…idea is they are “feeling” rather than seeing… leading with their hearts.Hearts Hide & Seek: Kids walk around with eyes closed and arms out in front. They wiggle their fingers and try to find one another. The idea is they are feeling rather than seeing—leading with their hearts. Once they find a friend, they say “Namaste” or something sweet of your choice & move on to another friend.
Four Corners: Heart Edition: Okay, little cheesy, but the heart has 4 chambers so why not play 4 corners? Each corner can be a heart opening pose (I found silhouette’s of the poses I wanted on Google Images and just drew it on a piece of paper for my non-readers). Draw the pose, write the pose name, and give each pose a number: 1, 2, 3, 4. Turn on some fun music & encourage the kids to run, dance, and just move around the room while the music is playing. You stop the music, cover your eyes, and count down from 5, giving them time to get to a corner & into a pose. Then call out the corner number. All the kids in that corner are “out” and can do what you like. I have them pick their favorite seated pose in the center of the room or they have to work together to make a Flower Pot (all in Flower pose with hands joined). With really little ones, just let them keep playing & don’t worry about a winner. Music starts & keep going, etc. Poses I used for this: Bow, Dancer (cupid w/arrow), Reverse Warrior or Warrior 1, and Sukhasana (easy pose) with their hands in heart mudra over their heart.
MC Yogi has a great song called “Give Love” that could be fun for freeze dance or musical mats or during 4 corners.
Songs from KAY: Definitely use “May the Long Time Sun” or “Om Namah Shivaya” in this class somewhere.
You could write a story using Dancer, Bow, Arrow, Tootsie Roll, heart mudra, chocolate covered pretzels, etc. Partner poses would be a great way to show respect, love, and learn to work together with their family members and friends!
Before the kids completely relax, we ask them to tighten and release their muscles in various ways. In the tensing/release stage of relaxation, throw in a kiss face! Have them practice for all the kisses they will be giving out! Let them imagine being with someone they love in their garden or watching a TV show that they and their loved ones star in!