Teaching Yoga to Children Through the Lessons of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a leader of peace and social justice. Monday, January 19, 2015 is Martin Luther King Jr. Day. The following are a few meaningful ways you can include his teachings in your yoga class.
The Story of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr
- Begin class by reading his story
Poses to Cover
- Warriors: Dr. King believed in standing up for what was right through nonviolence. Through yoga, we learn to be strong! We stand up for what is fair and kind
- Pose Challenge: It takes endurance and commitment to implement change. Dr. King was determined and didn’t give up. Let’s challenge ourselves and focus:
Hold a plank or side plank
Practice balance poses like dancer, eagle or tree
Partner Poses: work together to reach your goal
- Hand Project: Have each child trace their hand. On each finger write ways they would like to make the world a better place. Have yogis share their project during closing circle (don’t forget to leave a little more time)
- Peace Begins With Me: Before teaching our meditation mantra, explain who Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was:
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. believed that by standing up for what was right, in a peaceful way, we could change the world. He was right! He once said, “If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.”
Peace DOES begin with you, everyday.
End of Class
- After the Secret Garden, aka Yoga Nidra for children, review pieces of Dr. King’s “I Have a Dream” speech and discuss what his dream meant. Like Ghandi, Dr. King believed in a nonviolent protest of injustice.
- Closing Circle Questions: Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream that all people would be treated with love, kindness and respect. What is your dream to make the world a better place?
“Everybody can be great, because everybody can serve… you only need a heart full of grace, a soul generated by love.” ~ Martin Luther King, Jr.