Universal Design for Inclusive Kids Yoga: Inclusion is Belonging

I have had this on my heart to share for a while and decided that today would be a good day as we celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Inclusion & Universal Design

Inclusive programs create accepting environments and send a powerful message that all children are welcomed and valued.

When inclusive practices are fully embraced, we provide all children with an authentic sense of belonging.

Materials and programs that are developed with “universal design” concepts are designed from the beginning to be flexible enough to accommodate the unique needs of a wide range of individuals, including those with and without disabilities.

The intent of “universal design” is to simplify life for everyone by making products and programs usable by as many people as possible at little or no extra cost. Universal design benefits people of all ages and abilities. Have you ever used automatic doors or “curb cut” ramps? Then you have benefitted from universal design.

Inclusion is Belonginghttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g9-XX9227ek

Here’s my dream: Let’s use the concept of “universal design” as we develop and implement yoga programs and materials for kids and youth. What simple modifications can we make to be inclusive and supportive of kids and youth of all abilities and needs in our classes? Can we add visual supports? Simplify instructions? Modify poses for specific physical and/or sensory needs?

Before offering “separate” classes or creating “separate” materials for kids & youth with special needs, consider what could be done to support inclusion in what is already available.

Ok….. I’m not Pollyanna. I know that inclusion may take more thought and planning. Inclusion may be uncomfortable the first time you are faced with how to handle a challenging behavior. And there may some situations where it would not be safe for a particular child to be included at that point in time (ex: due to extremely aggressive behaviors). But based on my 21 years experience working with kids of all ages (0-21 years) & a wide variety of special needs, it is pretty rare to have a child with that extreme of a behavioral issue unless you are working in a program/setting specifically designed for those intense needs.

  • Who better to “be the change we want to see in the world” than those of us doing yoga with kids & youth?
  • Where better to truly teach the concept of inclusion than in yoga programs for kids & youth?

Need help knowing how to take steps towards inclusion? One great resource would be to collaborate with folks who are passionate about inclusion in your own community. Look for a teacher, a parent of a child with special needs, a speech-language pathologist, occupational therapist, physical therapist, social worker, etc… who shares your passion for inclusion.

And I’m here to brainstorm ideas via my OMazing Kids Yoga Facebook page….. The reason I established it was as a means to promote inclusive yoga for kids & teens of all abilities…. So I’d love to help!

Here are some great online resources for inclusion:

http://www.inclusionproject.org/

http://www.includingsamuel.com/resources/inclusion.aspx

Supporting Inclusion for Children with Autism Spectrum Disorders in Community Programs

http://www.kitonline.org/html/about/publications/Supporting-Children-with-Autism-Disabilities/eMagFiles/source/Binder1.pdf

Supporting Social Emotional Needs

http://www.kitonline.org/html/about/publications/KITSocial-Emo-Bookletindd/eMagFiles/source/KITSocial%20Emo%20Booklet.pdf

Supporting Children with Developmental Disabilities

http://www.kitonline.org/html/about/publications/Supporting-Children-with-Development/eMagFiles/source/Special%20Hope%20Resource%20Guide.pdf

Visual Support Video Series: How to Use Pictures to Enhance Activities

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=720vEFf40ls

Visual Support Video Series: How to Use Picture and Object Schedules

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FpsJoZSn61c

Defining expectations: How to Teach Children What is Expected of Them

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZZb_FqBAu7Q

Sensory support: How to Accommodate Children Who Are Over or Under-Sensitive

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XmsPYQd_Gmk

 

My goal in providing these thoughts & resources is to inspire and support inclusion. Namaste! 🙂

 

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, IAYT, RCYP-2

Speech-Language Pathologist

Founder of OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC – inclusive yoga for kids & teens of all abilities in Norman, Oklahoma

Radiant Child Yoga Certified – Levels 1 & 2

E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/amoorad1

Blog: http://omazingkidsyoga.com

NOTE: Please ignore any ads that appear below the wavy divider bar. This is a free blog site & I have no control over ads appearing here.

 

Review & Giveaway: Stories that Come Alive through Yoga

Looking for stories for kids that nurture the mind, the body and the spirit? “Stories that Come Alive through Yoga” by Renee Sherkness is a gem!

Product Description:

“Stories That Come Alive Through Yoga” is a fun, informative, and entertaining, instructional book for children and adults to experience yoga. It was created as a way to express to parents, grandparents, teachers and fitness instructors, or anyone for that matter new or old to yoga, who interacts with children ages 4 to 11 years old, how to share the experience of yoga with their child/children. It is a tool to assist adults to connect with the children they interact with in a fun and healthy way.

There are two ways to use this book:

  • Read and discuss the meaning of each of the 4 unique stories (Andy The Ant, Deanna The Dancer, Sammy The Snake & The Three Warriors) with your child.
  • Read each story and bring the story to life by becoming characters in the story by doing yoga poses (asanas) & end with the relaxation exercise in Chapter 9.

Here’s what is special about this book:

  • Each of the stories was specifically written with the flow of yoga poses (vinyasa) in mind.
  • Each story has a message behind it (Andy The Ant – “Respect everyone. We all matter, no matter how big or how small.”; Deanna The Dancer – “Stay focused on what you believe in and always follow your dream”; The Three Warriors – “Take your time to give thought to a situation before acting on it. Being first doesn’t always mean being best; Sammy The Snake – “Get to know the person on the inside. Never judge a book by its cover”)
  • The poses are explained before each story. There are no pictures of the poses but the descriptions are detailed and include kid-friendly tips and safety tips.
  • The yoga pose names are embedded in each story.
  • A guided relaxation story script is included in Chapter 9.
  • The author’s love of children & yoga shines through…. She clearly poured her heart into this book. Namaste 🙂

Here is a sneek peek inside the book (images are from the Amazon.com preview):

You’ll have to buy the book to see the rest of the Andy The Ant story 🙂

Here is the Table of Contents:

Paperback book price at the time of this post: $17.95

Available online at:

Author’s website: http://reneesherkness.webs.com/books.htm

Disclaimer: I received a free sample of this product to facilitate my review. Opinions expressed are my own.

How to enter the book giveaway:

  1. Enter via the “Giveaways” tab on the OMazing Kids Yoga FB page (http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga?v=app_197602066931325) & mention how you would be using this book with your child or the children you work with.  (comments must be in English; 1 entry per Facebook account).
  2. For one additional entry, leave a comment on this blog post. Must mention how you would be using this book with your child or the children you work with. (comments must be in English; 1 entry per person; must have a valid e-mail address)
  3. Tips: You increase your odds of winning by entering via both methods. Entering via the “Giveaways” tab will save me the step of having to obtain your mailing address – the info you complete on the tab comes directly to me via an e-mail.

Entry Deadline: Enter by any of the methods listed above by 11:59pm CST on December 31, 2011.

Rules of Participation:

  • Must be 18 years or older with a valid e-mail address.
  • Only USA entries are being allowed for this particular giveaway.
  • Employees or family members of OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC or the book’s author are not eligible.
  • No purchase required.
  • Comments submitted via the Enter Giveaways Here…. tab on Facebook may be copied & pasted into the blog post.
  • Odds of winning will depend on the number of eligible entries received.
  • One (1) winner will be chosen via a random drawing of valid entries on January 1. 2012.
  • The winner will get one (1) copy of the paperback book “Stories That Come Alive Through Yoga”.
  • The winner will be notified via e-mail and will be posted on the blog post.
  • If the winner only entered via blog post, their mailing address will be obtained via e-mail.
  • In the event that the winner does not respond within 24 hours, a new winner will be selected via a random drawing.
  • The winner’s address will be forwarded to the author & she will be shipping the book directly to the winner.
  • Prize Value: retail price $17.95.

Other Legal Stuff: I know it’s just a kids yoga book but just to be safe here is all the legal stuff…

This giveaway is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You are providing your information to OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC and not to Facebook. The information you provide will only be used for our internal purposes in relation to the administration of the giveaway. Your information will NOT be sold to any outside parties.

Indemnification/Hold Harmless: By participating, entrants agree: (a) to the decisions of OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC, which shall be final in all respects; (b) to release, discharge, and hold harmless OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC and its respective representatives and agents from all liability, injuries, losses or damages of any kind to persons or property resulting in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from the acceptance, possession, misuse or use of a prize, or from participation in and/or entry into the Contest or any Contest-related activity and for acceptance, delivery, or use of any prize; (c) that the foregoing parties have neither made nor are in any manner responsible or liable for any warranty, representation or guaranty, expressed or implied, in fact or in law, relating to any prize.

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, IAYT, RCYP-2

Speech-Language Pathologist

Founder of OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC – inclusive yoga for kids & teens of all abilities in Norman, Oklahoma

Radiant Child Yoga Certified – Levels 1 & 2

E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/amoorad1

Blog: https://omazingkidsyoga.wordpress.com

NOTE: Please ignore any ads that appear below the wavy divider bar. This is a free blog site & I have no control over ads appearing here.

Review & Giveaway: Namaste ‘n Play CD from Kidding Around Yoga

Are you ready to kid around and have a blast… again? Check out the new “Namaste ‘n  Play” CD from Kidding Around Yoga!

Chanting, Deep Relaxation, Focus related games and activities all with a Yoga Twist 🙂

Songs on the CD include:

  1. Om Namah Shivaya
  2. Crazy Monkey
  3. Positive Words
  4. Yummy Yoga… Truth is One, Foods are Many
  5. Namaste ’n Play
  6. A Yogi Went to Sea
  7. It’s all good
  8. The Crow
  9. The Yoga Slide
  10. Orange You Grateful?
  11. Laughing Meditation
  12. May the Long Time Sun

All the songs are unique & fun! I love how creative and upbeat this CD is. Adding music to kids yoga is a fun way to enhance a theme & encourage participation. Many kids with special needs, especially those with Autism Spectrum Disorders, respond well to music and often are drawn to songs that have a strong beat or rhythm.

Here are a few links to more info about using music with kids with ASD: http://www.mkdowney.com/music.htm, http://www.coastmusictherapy.com/tips/Autism.PDFhttp://www.tunedintolearning.com/why-music.html & http://www.autismanxiety.com/music-helps-decrease-anxiety/

Check out the Namaste ‘n Play CD samples by going to their website and clicking on the PLAY button to listen:

Purchase online at: http://kiddingaroundyoga.com/shop

Price: $12.00, includes shipping (see their website for special offers when purchasing more than 1 CD)

Disclaimer: I received a free digital sample of this product to facilitate my review.  Opinions expressed are my own.

How to enter the Kidding Around Yoga Namaste ‘n Play CD giveaway:

  1. Enter via the “Giveaways” tab on the OMazing Kids Yoga Facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga?v=app_197602066931325) & mention how you would be using this CD your child or the children you work with      (comments must be in English; 1 entry per Facebook account).
  2. For one additional entry, leave a comment on this blog post. Must mention how you would be using this CD with your child or the children you work with. (comments must be in English; 1 entry per person; must have a valid e-mail address)
  3. Tips: You increase your odds of winning by entering via both methods. Entering via the “Giveaways” tab will save me the step of having to obtain your mailing address – the info you complete on the tab comes directly to me via an e-mail.

Entry Deadline: Enter by any of the methods listed above by 11:59pm CST on December 16, 2011.

Rules of Participation:

  • Must be 18 years or older with a valid e-mail address.
  • USA entries only for a CD. International entries are being allowed for a digital download version in this particular giveaway.
  • Employees or family members of OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC or Kidding Around Yoga are not eligible.
  • No purchase required.
  • Odds of winning will depend on the number of eligible entries received.
  • Ten (10) winners will be chosen via a random drawing of valid entries on December 17, 2011.
  • Each winner from the USA will get one (1) copy of the Namaste ‘n Play CD. International winners will receive a digital download version of the CD.
  • The winners will be notified via e-mail.
  • In the event that a winner does not respond within 24 hours, a new winner will be selected via a random drawing.
  • The winner’s mailing address will be obtained via e-mail and will be forwarded to Kidding Around Yoga.
  • Kidding Around Yoga will be shipping the CD’s or will be e-mailing a link to a digital download directly to the winners.
  • Prize Value: retail price $12.00.

Other Legal Stuff: I know it’s just a kids yoga music CD but just to be safe here is all the legal stuff…

This giveaway is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You are providing your information to OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC and not to Facebook. The information you provide will only be used for our internal purposes in relation to the administration of the giveaway. Your information will NOT be sold to any outside parties.

Indemnification/Hold Harmless: By participating, entrants agree: (a) to the decisions of OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC, which shall be final in all respects; (b) to release, discharge, and hold harmless OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC and its respective representatives and agents from all liability, injuries, losses or damages of any kind to persons or property resulting in whole or in part, directly or indirectly, from the acceptance, possession, misuse or use of a prize, or from participation in and/or entry into the Contest or any Contest-related activity and for acceptance, delivery, or use of any prize; (c) that the foregoing parties have neither made nor are in any manner responsible or liable for any warranty, representation or guaranty, expressed or implied, in fact or in law, relating to any prize.

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, IAYT, RCYP-2

Speech-Language Pathologist

Founder of OMazing Kids Yoga, LLC – inclusive yoga for kids & teens of all abilities in Norman, Oklahoma

Radiant Child Yoga Certified – Levels 1 & 2

E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OMazingKidsYoga

YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/user/amoorad1

Blog: https://omazingkidsyoga.wordpress.com

NOTE: Please ignore any ads that appear below the wavy divider bar. This is a free blog site & I have no control over ads appearing here.

Christmas & Winter Themed Kids Yoga Ideas (updated for 2012)

 

Looking for some fun Christmas & Winter Themed Kids Yoga Ideas?

I typically develop my OMazing Kids Yoga lesson plans around a children’s picture book. Books provide a clear beginning & end and provide visual information to attend to. Many of the children I work with have special needs, so providing this extra structure is helpful for them.

Here are some books that I have found that work well for kids yoga this time of year & the yoga pose/activity opportunities in each book:

Winter:

  • Gingerbread Friends by Jan Brett (gingerbread house (partner rooftops pose), ski (Warrior II), skate (dancer), sled (seated forward fold), cake-top-cookie people (mountain), cartwheels (windmill), swan, flower, mouse (childs pose), cat, fox (Gyan mudra around the nose), climb stairs (cross crawl hike), making gingerbread cookies sequence (easy pose legs as bowl, reach to get ingredients: flour, salt, baking soda, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, butter, brown sugar, egg, molasses & vanilla, mix (stir the pot & do “washing machine” for mixer), forward seated with legs being oven rack & stretch arms to close the oven door, tick-tock-toes timer, “mmm” breath as we smell them cooking), group sled (seated angle in a line, lean to each side). (Recipe: http://janbrett.com/gingerbread_baby_recipe.htm)

  • Hibernation Station by Michelle Meadows (bear, chipmunk, squirrel, mouse, groundhog, turtle, snake, frog, raccoon, snail, tree, train, raindrops partner pose, skunk, hug)

  • One Bear Lost by Karen Hayles (bear, rabbit, snowy tree, waterfall, bird, squirrel, buzzing bee breath, snowball (child’s pose), sledding (group pose – like group rollercoaster from YogaKids), boat, fish, looking with Gyan mudra (“OK” hand position) at eyes)

  • Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner (snowing (standing star w/ wiggling fingers), snowy tree, ski (Warrior II), squirrels gathering acorns (toe-ga with brown pom-poms), owl (seated twist), shrew (mouse/childs pose), deer, deer mice (cuddle up in group childs pose), feather breathing, voles in a tunnel (group downward facing dog tunnel & each child gets a turn to be a vole going through the tunnel), snowshoe hare (bunny breaths), frog, fish, beaver, fox, chipmunk, bear, crescent moon, fire (palming), buzzing bee breath, star, starry night guided relaxation). See several pages inside the book on this post on the publisher’s blog: http://www.chroniclebooks.com/blog/2012/02/17/over-and-under-the-snow/. See a post with great art project ideas for this book: http://www.brimfulcuriosities.com/2012/01/over-and-under-snow-by-kate-messner.html

A few ideas for “a starry night guided relaxation”

The Night Sky from “Imaginations: Fun Relaxation Stories and Meditations for Kids” (order at http://www.imaginationsforkids.com/)

Big White Star from “Yoga 4 Classrooms Activity Card Deck” (order at http://www.yoga4classrooms.com/activity-card-deck)

  • Red Sled by Lita Judge (snowing (standing star w/ wiggling fingers),  hiking through the snow (cross crawl hike), cabin (rooftop partners), tree, bear (bear walk), bunny breaths, moose (seated twist with hands on head as large antlers), moon, possum (legs up), raccoon (gyan mudra mask), porcupine (lotus mudra as quills), mouse (childs pose), group sled (group sled (seated angle in a line, lean to each side), “Hmmm?” breath.). This is a minimally worded book that lends itself well to storytelling and creativity. The only words are the sound effects. See a great YouTube preview at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-OKBRK3-Po.

  • Say Hello to the Snowy Animals by Ian Whybrow (husky (up dog, downward facing dog), sled (seated forward fold), polar bear (YogaKids), owl (seated twist), caribou (deer), whale, seal (on belly, stretch arms & legs out straight), puffin (bird), artic hare (bunny breaths), snowy tree, snowing (standing star w/ wiggling fingers).

  • The Mitten by Jan Brett (snowing (standing star w/ wiggling fingers), snowy tree, legs as basket full of knitting yarn, mole (child pose w/ fingers spread out by nose), rabbit (bunny breaths), hedgehog (lotus mudra – like spines), owl (seated twist), badger (gyan mudra at eyes “looking”), fox (gyan mudra around nose & cat with leg out as bushy tail), bear (bear walk), mouse (child pose), sneezing breath)

Jan Brett has several free printables to go with “The Mitten”: http://janbrett.com/pdf/tell_your_own_mitten_story.pdf, http://janbrett.com/pdf/tell_your_own_mitten_story_animals.pdf, http://janbrett.com/pdf/design_your_own_mitten.pdf, http://janbrett.com/pdf/mitten_coloring_page_animals.pdf, http://janbrett.com/pdf/mitten_glove_coloring_page.pdf, http://janbrett.com/pdf/mitten_glove_coloring_page_reversed.pdf, http://janbrett.com/pdf/mitten_glove_animals_coloring_page.pdf <3

  • The Very Bouncy Bear (pop-up book) by Jack Tickle (polar bear (YogaKids), fish, moose (deer + hands as big antlers by ears), whale, penguin, rabbit, seal, wolf (updog + howling), owl, mouse, moon (crescent moon), star)

  • Winter Wonderland by Dick Smith (bell mindfulness activity, snow (freeze/melt), mouse, snowy tree, bird, snowman, fire (hand rubbing/palming activity), chipmunk, sleigh)

Christmas:

12 Days of Christmas by Don Daily

  • Bear Stays Up For Christmas by Karma Wilson (snoring breath, bear, mouse, rabbit, stretch & sigh breath, bird, Brain Gym Cross Crawl hike, snowy tree, snow (freeze/melt), stir-the-pot, fire (hand rubbing/palming activity), Christmas tree, friendship quilt craft activity – http://karmawilson.com/teachers.htm#staysup )

  • Can You See What I See? Night Before Christmas by Walter Wick (too many to list – each page has a seek-and-find for at least 12 items – would be best suited for kids that are a little older and have the ability to find hidden items in a picture scene)

  • How the Grinch Stole Christmas! by Dr. Seuss (Mt. Crumpit mountain pose, Max the downward facing dog pose, Who choo-choo breath, Christmas tree pose, Who feast (group table pose), Grinch Santy Claus Ho-Ho-Ho breath, crumbs too small for a mouse pose, group sled pose, heart grew three sizes mudra (pic: http://tinyurl.com/c7s7dtt). This story would be best for kids who are a little older. Can lead to great discussions about the over-commercialization of Christmas, what was truly important to the Whos, etc.). I added 3 yoga cards to my Seuss Yoga post:

More Seuss Yoga – Grinch – 1-page PDF.

Get the whole collection of Seuss Yoga printable cards in this post: https://omazingkidsllc.com/2012/02/28/the-yoga-of-dr-seuss-printable-from-omazing-kids-yoga/

  • Room For A Little One by Martin Waddell (stable (partner rooftops), ox, dog, cat, mouse, donkey, rock-the-baby, star. To expand the Nativity theme: shepherd (crescent moon – looks like the curve in their staff), sheep (sit in easy pose and do sign for sheep on both arms – http://www.babysignlanguage.com/dictionary/s/sheep/, camel, 3 Kings gift activity – Fill a box full of affirmation cards/affirmation statements & wrap the lid separate from the bottom of the box. As you pass the box, take one affirmation out and say it about yourself & think of one nice thing to say about the person you are passing the box to. At the end, the kids can color a nativity picture to give as a gift to their parents.)

  • The Spirit of Christmas by Nancy Tillman (eyes around the clock from YogaKids, bird, house (partner rooftops), snowy tree, sleigh, horse, sleigh bells mindfulness activity – follow the beat, toy soldier marching (mountain pose + hike in place or Brain Gym Cross Crawl Hike), snowball (child’s pose), snow (freeze/melt), wolf, snowman, lion, snow angels, mouse, sledding, swan, Santa (balloon belly breathing & laugh), moon (crescent moon), star)

  • The Very Smiley Snowman (pop-up book) by Jack Tickle (reindeer, rabbit, sledding, bird, snowy tree, snowman, penguin, polar bear, fish, Christmas tree)

  • Who Would Like a Christmas Tree? A Tree for All Seasons by Ellen Bryan Obed (snowy tree, bird, mouse (childs pose), deer (seated twist with small antlers), woodcock (soaring bird), easy pose legs as robin’s nest, balsam twig aphids (happy baby pose bugs), flower, butterfly, chrysalis (roll up in mat), spider (roll ball of yarn back and forth in group to weave a web), fox (gyan mudra by nose & cat with leg out as bushy tail), wild turkey (lotus mudra as feathers), christmas tree pose, star)

Santa Yoga Sequence from Classroom Yoga:

http://www.classroomyogaproject.org/cyp_currently_online/resources_files/Santa%20Sequence_Classroom%20Yoga%20Project.pdf

Fun “Snowboarder” 5-minute yoga break from GreenTREE Yoga!

Love all the pose ideas: snowflake (standing star w/ wiggling fingers), mountain, chairlift (chair), snowboarder (Warrior II), Winter warm-up breathing & a seated guided relaxation.

Free mp3: http://greentreeyoga.org/Programs/Elementary_LittleTREE_Yoga/13.%20%20F_Snowboarder%20VHB%2012.mp3 (right click & “save target as” to save the mp3 to your computer.). If you have any difficulty, go to their website and download it from there: http://greentreeyoga.org/Programs/Elementary_LittleTREE_Yoga/elementaryyoga.htm.

Cool ideas in this new video from Cosmic Kids : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSZvMHlw9vs

cosmic kids - pedro the penguin - watch on Youtube

And even more fun pose ideas in this post on Lilsugar:

holiday yoga poses for kids - click pic to go to this post

http://www.lilsugar.com/Holiday-Yoga-Poses-Kids-12643523

Super cute & fun ideas on the Small Potatoes blog!

A Yuletide Yoga Practice for Young Children - click pic to go to blog post

http://mysmallpotatoes.com/2012/12/13/weekly-kids-co-op-a-yuletide-yoga-practice-for-young-children/

Free Song:

Free Gingerbread Man song download from Bari Koral: http://soundcloud.com/barikoralfamilyband/gingerbread-man

http://i46.tinypic.com/2hzo6ya.jpg

Snowy Tree – make snowflakes from paper, white felt or foam & hang from your arms (“branches”) in tree pose.

Christmas Tree – make ornaments from paper, felt or foam & hang from your arms (“branches”) in tree pose.

Window Breaths – Sit in front of a cold window.  Take in a deep breath through your nose, open your mouth and blow warm air on the cold window.  Watch as the window fogs up. If the window has frost, watch as your warm breath melts the frost.

Freeze & Melt: Play Christmas or winter-themed music. When the music stops “freeze” into your favorite yoga pose. When the music starts “melt” and dance to the music. (Please be mindful of kids individual sensory needs when selecting music to use in a group setting- http://omazingkidsyoga.com/music/) :)

Snowball Games:

Blowing Snowballs: Each child has a straw, a small box & a variety of sizes of cotton balls (aka. “snowballs”). Work on breathwork & mindfulness while blowing the cotton balls into the snow fort box.

Snowball Toe-Ga: Each child has a variety of sizes of cotton balls (aka. “snowballs”) & a clear cup. Use your toes to pick up the snowballs and fill up the cup.

Pass the Snowball: Sit in a circle and pass a small white ball (aka. snowball). First time around pass with hands while doing a seated twist. Next time around pass it with your feet. For added fun, start passing a second ball around after the first one is about 1/4 way around. Need a snowball? Try making one by stuffing a white sock full of cotton batting or socks. 🙂

I couldn’t resist this adorable Icebox The Snowman Beanie Ballz on sale at Barnes & Noble!

Printable snowflake patterns: http://www.firstpalette.com/tool_box/printables/snowflake.html & even more at: http://www.marcels-kid-crafts.com/snowflake-pattern.html

Snowflake ornaments printable: http://www.guildcraftinc.com/guildcraft/GuildcraftSnowflakeornament.pdf

No two snowflakes are alike idea from Alluem Kids Yoga: http://alluemkids.blogspot.com/2009/12/no-two-snowflakes-are-alike.html

Make a snowman printable: http://www.guildcraftinc.com/guildcraft/GuildcraftSnowmancutout.pdf

Coloring pages (can customize them): http://twistynoodle.com/coloring-pages/holiday/christmas/  & http://twistynoodle.com/coloring-pages/months/december/

Sa, Ta, Ma, Na Rudolph idea from Alluem Kids Yoga: http://alluemkids.blogspot.com/2010/12/happy-holidays-from-rudolph-and-alluem.html

Gingerbread Play Dough Recipe: http://www.theimaginationtree.com/2011/12/gingerbread-play-dough-recipe.html

Fun Christmas scented playdoh ideas from  1+1+1=1: http://www.1plus1plus1equals1.net/2011/12/12-days-of-christmas-busy-hands-play/

Cute Printable Paper Ornaments to use in Christmas Tree Pose: http://familyfun.go.com/assets/cms/pdf/printables/Christmas-Tree-Paper-Ornaments-printables-1010.pdf

Make a “Melted Snowman” glitter bottle: http://www.craftelf.com/Craft_elf_Holiday_Christmas_melted_snowman_craft_project.htm

Cute idea from Inner Child Fun! Get the instructions & free printable template to make this cardboard toy gingerbread house from an empty cereal box: http://innerchildfun.com/2012/11/diy-cardboard-toy-gingerbread-house.html

Puffy snowflake paintingshttp://innerchildfun.com/2012/01/puffy-snowflake-paintings.html

Make a snow globe: http://thegreendragonfly.wordpress.com/2011/12/03/make-a-snow-globe/

Songs:

Once There Was A Snowmanhttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mv4cC3rM63s 

“Once there was a snowman, snowman, snowman. Once there was a snowman tall, tall, tall. In the sun he melted, melted, melted. In the sun he melted small, small, small.”

Thanks to Donna Freeman from Yogainmyschool for suggesting this song….. It’s new to me and I LOVE it. It will be perfect to stretch tall, tall, tall and then melt down into a small snowball – child’s pose! As I was looking for this song I found several more snow songs on this website: http://www.everythingpreschool.com/themes/snow/songs.htm

Guided Relaxation: The Relax Kids “Silent Nights” album is available for FREE right now – It has 12 Christmas & Winter themed guided relaxation visualization mp3’s – http://www.relaxkids.com/advent/gifts/silentnights/

The Snowman guided relaxation script (a shortened version based on this post on the Relax Kids blog: http://blog.relaxkids.com/?p=2219)

Feel free to add any other fun seasonal kids yoga ideas in a comment below!

Angela Moorad, MS, CCC-SLP, IAYT, RCYP-2

Speech-Language Pathologist

Founder of OMazing Kids, LLC – inclusive wellness activities for kids of all abilities

Radiant Child Yoga Certified – Levels 1 & 2

E-Mail: amoorad1@juno.com

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OMazing Kids LLC is an organization that promotes inclusive wellness activities for kids of all abilities. The blog and social media pages share information about books, DVD’s, CD’s, games and other products specifically designed for kids wellness, mindfulness and relaxation, product reviews & giveaways, lesson plan & activity ideas, research, kids wellness in the news and a connection corner with listings of individuals doing adapted yoga and those offering trainings.

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