Well-Being, Mindfulness, Relaxation, Quiet Time, Calming and Breathing Techniques.
Relaxation Exercises, Quiet Time and Mindfulness at South End Infant School.
In a very busy world we all need some down time, we all need strategies to relax and cope with potentially stressful situations. Many schools are adopting mindfulness, breathing, relaxation exercises and quiet times to help maintain pupil wellbeing. Alongside fun, exciting learning and healthy lifestyle education, the children will have quiet time sessions at school. During these sessions we will learn how to be reflective and sit quietly. We will learn relaxing breathing techniques e.g. petal breathing or finger breathing (ask your child to show you).
We will use “Feel Good Friends.” Quiet time and relaxation stories for young children. You can find out more at http://www.feelgoodfriends.com/
We also teach breathing/counting calming exercises using “Go Noodle.” https://family.gonoodle.com/channels/flow
We will teach relaxation and stretching exercises through the use of Jaime Amor’s “Cosmic Kids” a scheme widely and successfully used throughout schools in the UK. The survey results and feedback from schools have been very impressive and we are excited about introducing it in our school. You can read some of the background information and feedback from teachers etc at http://www.cosmickids.com/
Cosmic Kids is a free resource available online, providing Yoga inspired videos. Children stretch and relax while exploring animal adventure stories. You can explore the videos/resources yourself by visiting YouTube https://www.youtube.com/user/CosmicKidsYoga and watch the introduction video. You can also try some of the animal adventures. We will also use “Peace Out” and “Cosmic Kids Disco” clips. We have no plans to integrate Zen Den or Namastories into our curriculum, but feel free to explore them at home.
Much time and research has gone into thinking about how we will create a relaxing atmosphere at school and how we will teach mindfulness in a respectful way. We have visited and spoken to experts, Local Authorities, people in the community and surrounding schools.
We will use Cosmic Kids resources, as many schools do, but in a considered, respectful way which suits the needs and beliefs of all our pupils. Therefore, we will call yoga “relaxation exercises.” Jaime says “Namaste” at the beginning of her animal adventure stories, we will say “Hello” in a soft voice and put hands in our lap in response.
Jaime is a qualified adult and children’s Yoga teacher. She has been asked about the religious content of her videos/teachings. Adult Yoga can sometimes contain religious content. However, children’s Yoga has no religious content or reference. As an inclusive, respectful and caring school this is very important to us. We want everyone to be able to take part. Therefore, our “relaxation exercise sessions” and “quiet times” will have NO religious content.
Jaime Amor has written about the religious element of her teaching/resources:
Kids yoga is story based exercise with a relaxation at the end, we go on adventure, meet animals and go to fun places. There is no religious belief at all in the story or the activity.
Some people worry about their kids doing yoga because adult yoga has sometimes been associated with Hinduism, but kids’ yoga is not Hinduism. And in fact, yoga began before the eastern religions that are sometimes associated with it.
The yoga I teach is to promote mental and physical stability.
There is no worship of any kind involved in my yoga. When we say “Nameste” we are saying “hello” in yoga.
The core values of children’s yoga is kindness and respect.
While there is a spiritual angle in some adult yoga, we don’t do this in kids’ yoga at all – we just move our bodies and go on fun adventures with good moral messages.
We hope all of the links and above information is helpful and it keeps you included in the development of our curriculum. Our website has a Well-being page, which includes links, videos and an electronic copy of this leaflet. If you have any further questions, Mrs Welford will be happy to talk to you.
Mindfulness at our school.
The practice of being present in the moment.
Giving yourself room, to take a step back and breathe.
Creating a pocket of calm.
What we do in school - Breathing exercise videos.