When I arrived at home from my weekend training with Haris in May, all I could say to my husband was, “Haris is a genius! Haris is a genius!” My statement was completely validated just a few days later when I used the KAY music with kids for the first time. I am a first-grade teacher, so I did a test run of a few songs with my class. First, we did “Every Little Cell.” The kids loved it! We all danced and sang and tapped our bodies to wake up all the cells inside—and laughed the whole time. I felt great by the end of the song and so did the children. We were all a little winded after the last round of fast jumping jacks, but it was such a good feeling!
A few days later, one of my students started to get upset about something, which was a common occurrence. The difference was, now with the KAY music downloaded, I had a new tool to use with her. I dimmed the lights, grabbed my iPad and turned on “Peace Begins with Me”. The whole class settled right down and joined in repeating the beautiful chant. It was quite a powerful experience. I wished I had it on film, as it was picture perfect. As soon as the song ended, several children asked if we could sing it again, and of course, I said, “Yes.”
The next week, the other first-grade class came to my room for a special project. We had worked for over an hour and needed a “brain break.” I decided to play “Every Little Cell” for them. My regular group of children was with another teacher so I wanted to see how the new group would respond. They also loved the song with its catchy tune and all of the motions and jumping around. After another hour of work, they asked if we could “do that song again,” but it was time to go to lunch.
Fast forward a few weeks to a summer day camp (not a yoga camp) with a mix of ages from five to ten years old. We needed an indoor activity during the heat of a hot Florida summer afternoon. Some of the kids didn’t sound very enthused about having to do yoga. I told them it would make them faster, stronger, smarter, and that they would become better people. They were all in! I also mentioned that many professional athletes do yoga, which really got their attention.
I followed the lesson outline, so first we OM-ed in and then did the “Crazy Monkey” song. It was quite a sight to see twenty elementary-aged kids, along with a few high school helpers and another adult, all acting like crazy monkeys. We then had a discussion about meditation, and I taught them the Peace Begins with Me meditation and finger movements. Starting the next day, each time we went on a field trip we would do Peace Begins with Me when the bus stopped for a red light. It was such a welcome relief to have a few moments of silence on a school bus full of excited children! The other teachers couldn’t believe how well it worked and loved it! Since we take the children on one or two field trips a day in the summer, the meditation got used a lot!
After the meditation and some Sun Salutations, I turned on Every Little Cell. One of my first graders was in the summer camp group. When he heard the music, he yelled out, “Oh, I love this song!”
As they say, the rest is history! Every time I have used the KAY music the kids have loved it as much as I did when I first heard it in my OKAY modules and with Haris that wonderful weekend in May!
For a longer conversation about music and mindfulness, take a listen to the Mindful Conversations with KAY podcast’s interview with Bari Karol as well as the episode specifically about the power of music.
Read more about experiencing music with these articles:
- One Love: https://kiddingaroundyoga.com/blog/yoga-reggae-kids-love-unity/
- Magical Music: https://kiddingaroundyoga.com/blog/kids-yoga-music/
- The KAY Way – Using KAY Music: https://kiddingaroundyoga.com/using-kay-music/
Like what you read here? There’s so much MORE to explore and learn with Kidding Around Yoga. Check out our website for our live and online teacher trainings, Yoga Alliance-approved 95-hour RCYT trainings, specialty online courses, original music, podcast, merchandise, and beyond! KAY even offers an online course designed to make yoga, breathing, and mindfulness part of your family’s daily routine (KAY in the Home).