Here are some simple exercises to practise with children to introduce the ideas of mindfulness.
Fill a clear jar full of water with a spoon of glitter and a spoon of glue.
Shake the jar up and whilst watching the glitter move around, explain this is how your thoughts look when you feel mad or upset, they move so fast that you can’t see or think clearly and therefore silly decisions can be made.
Put the jar down and when the glitter settles, you can see how the water clears and the glitter settles. So does the mind when you sit still and let you see things more clearly.
Ask your child to lie down flat on the ground and start to squeeze every muscle in their body from their toes to their eyebrows and then let the muscles relax.
Ask them to think about how it makes them feel.
An awareness walk
Walking through the countryside or neighbourhood and we can notice things we normally wouldn’t see, as we rush through life. One minute of the walk should be silent, so children can pay attention to all the sounds around them.
For the children who love superheroes and know that Spiderman has special powers and so can they!
Experiment with listening exercises, by sounding a bell whilst eyes are closed, and see how long the sound is heard afterwards.
Holding a flower and feeling the sensation of touching the petals and the stem.
Blindfolded, try putting different berries or small foods into your child’s mouth and get them to eat it slowly and describe how it feels and tastes.
These are all super-senses.
Personal weather Reports.
In this practise, children can talk about how they feel without having to overly emotionally express themselves.
Ask your child to say in weather terms how they feel today. Sunny, stormy windy etc.
It teaches them that they can’t charge the weather outside and nor can they change their inner feelings.
Only can we change how we teach children how to relate to them.