Sunday, March 13

Meditation Techniques for Kids


meditation techniques for kids
Courtesy elemenoperica morguefile.com
Meditation techniques help hyperactive, unfocussed kids to calm down and focus on the task at hand, whether it's work or play. Now, this might seem an impossible task short of putting them in a straitjacket or adopting other such drastic measures, but meditation is the key to calming all sorts of little monsters. First of all, we need to be clear that it is not yoga for kids that I'm about to expound on. But you could consider meditation an introductory step in that direction, but let's leave that aside for now.

Meditation may be considered beneficial for kids eight years of age and above. The eighth birthday is something of a crucial crossroads where the child hovers between the last vestiges of babyhood and the first light of pre-pubescence. What's unique about this stage is that the physical growth is much faster than the mental and emotional, leaving the child unfocussed, emotional, and sometimes unable to cope with all the changes that have begun to take over the body. 

This stage may be marked by tantrums due to various causesoutbursts, and random acts of rebellion that carries on well into teenage and can be a trying time for parents and teachers. This is also the time that a child requires unqualified love and firm parenting. Most parents are at a loss as to how to handle their growing child during this time and tend to let things just fall where they may. Meditation is the perfect tool to give the child some control and confidence over the situation and her life.

How to Meditate


Meditation techniques for kids are of course, not the sort you'd find in a class for adults. While it may be helpful to enrol your kids in a meditation class, it may not be viable due to a number of reasons. What you can do, is teach him a few basics that help calm and soothe the hyperactivity.

The first step would be to teach your child to pay attention to her breathing. Bring to her notice how her breathing varies with her emotions, faster when she is angry or excited, slower when she is relaxed, and even with longer pauses when a person is sleeping.

Once you are certain your child has become aware of breath, it is time to teach him how to control it. This is easily achieved by holding and letting go, taking long breaths and letting them out completely. When doing this, it is important that your eight year old not retain the breath for too long. She may draw long breaths and release them slowly, but she is not to retain it within for long as taught in adult meditation classes.

Next, teach your child to pay attention to his thoughts. Ask him to notice how many thoughts he has had in the past five minutes. Make a game of this and actually jot down the thoughts that come and go within a stipulated time. Use a stop clock to make it interesting. But drive home the fact that the point is not to see who has the most number of thoughts, but the opposite. Gradually ask him to think as little as possible, till eventually he is able to have thought-free moments.

For the final step, ask your child to count back from five, four, three, two, one, without any thought coming in to her head as she counts. If a thought comes in at four, go back to five, and begin again. To begin with, it's okay to count out aloud and focus on the number being articulated. As she masters the technique of counting and focussing exclusively on the numbers with no thought entering her mind, she can count mentally.

Benefits of Meditation for Kids


This meditation technique helps kids breathe calmly, focus on their breathing, and clear their heads of all thought, thereby increasing their mental clarity, memory power, and focus. Once this tool has been mastered, encourage them to use it whenever they need to concentrate, whether it's to do a sum, score a shot, or fall asleep. This is a superb meditation technique to instil confidence and calm in your kids, especially for kids who were prone to throw temper tantrums as toddlers. For some really cool meditation ideas to get your kids started,you might like what they have for you at Meditations4Kids.com .
 


11 comments:

  1. Wow, I didn't know kids as young as 8 could be taught to meditate. Kids are so stressed out these days i am sure this will be helpful.

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  2. Thanks for your comment, Rosanna. Always a pleasure to hear from you. And yes, meditation would be an ideal way to help kids deal with stress.

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  3. This a great way to get kids started on meditation. I'm definitely going to give this a go.

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  4. Good luck, Jimmy. You'll be doing your child a huge favour :)

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  5. Meditation is very useful in removing stress so it's very helpful for both children and adults.

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  6. Thanks for sharing. I find this information very useful. I wasn't aware at what age a child can meditate. I often find that when I am breathing and clearing my mind I feel a lot better. But this technique will be great for children. It'll teach them how to take control of their body by breathing, clear their thoughts, and learn to count mentally. I am currently enrolled in a Teacher Education Program, so I find this information very useful. Hopefully, one day I can use this technique. I have a daughter who is 16 months, but I will keep this in mind for when she gets to that age.

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  7. Hi Anonymous, I'm glad you found this useful. Working with kids is really one of the most rewarding things in life. Good luck with your work and I wish you all happiness with your little one.Cheers!

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  8. Meditation for children can alleviate stress and anxiety, frustration, fear, anger, restlessness, and many more symptoms. Practicing meditation for children will have great effects for both parents and your children. Anyway, thanks for sharing this post.

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    1. Thanks Krisha. I agree with you completely.

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  9. Finally someone addressed this issue! I've been thinking about this for some years now, but I couldn't talk about it with anyone because I am not an expert in the field of meditation and I didn't want to say anything stupid. I have, somehow, felt that I would be better off if I had learned how to meditate before I became an adult and really needed to do it to relieve stress. I noticed we are trying to make adults switch to a more spiritual way of thinking and living, but we never think about starting with our children. I really liked the way you wrote this article, because it encompasses all I wanted to say. Thanks! Flora

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    1. I really appreciate your kind words, Flora. The earlier we learn to soothe and control our mental faculty the better off we are.

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