As yoga is going through a heyday and moms and school teachers usher forth the next wave of enlightenment in the household our resources are getting much better. A posse of my yoga mom + yoga educator colleagues have rolled out some great books, videos, teaching tools and audios. Check them out, and let them know I sent you.
Make sure to scroll down to the amazing teaching tools from Go Grounded. Indy and her friends love the Whale Yoga DVD - it’s our party hit and wind down tool for sleepovers. Giselle’s stories and coloring books make hip birthday party gifts. Amy Saltzman is taking on the teen realm of mindfulness and filling a void that needs more voices. Lisa Flynn’s Yoga 4 Classroom is going straight to my kindergarden teacher. (Yup – Indy wanted to ride the school bus and go to kindergarten until we depart for Mexico… despite all the unschooling talk.
Check it all out below.
Kids Yoga Stories
We have three books from this publisher: Anna and her rainbow-colored yoga mats, Sophia’s Jungle Adventure, and Luke’s A to Z of Australian Animals.
Anna and her rainbow-colored yoga mats is about a girl who has a hard time hearing. She starts at a new school and practices yoga by herself on brightly colored yoga mats during recess. She images traveling the world and having new experiences. At first her schoolmates just question her behavior, but eventually she meets a boy who also has hearing loss, and who also reads lips like she does. They begin practicing yoga together during recess, and before you know it more children joined in the fun of practicing yoga and imagining new adventures. A great inspirational, fun, and engaging story filled with colorful illustration and large type.
Luke’s A to Z of Australian Animals
Written by Giselle Shardlow and illustrated by Emily Gedzyk
This is a yoga book, an alphabet book, and a coloring book all rolled into one. Starting with the letter A for anemone, this book features coloring pages for each letter that feature an animal or fish. Each page also has yoga pose on it (anemone is “Happy Baby Pose”), and an image of a child doing the pose. In the back are tips and instructions for parents and/or teachers to help you make the most of this multitasking book.
Sophia’s Jungle Adventure
Written by Giselle Shardlow and illustrated by Emily Gedzyk
Sophia and her family go on a jungle adventure. Along the way, they see objects and animals that can also be yoga poses (canoes, for example, suggest boat pose). Filled with colorful illustrations, each page in the book moves the story along and also shows sophia doing the specific pose related to the animal or action on that page. In the back is a list of poses with illustrations as well as tips for adults to help their kids make the most of this book.
Imaginations: Fun Relaxation Stories and Meditations for Kids
By Carolyn Clarke
This book is an all around good time! Beginning with an introduction for adults on the importance of relaxation and one for children, this book takes kids on journeys of their imaginations! But before adventures begin, there are relaxation yoga poses for kids to do in order to prepare. Photos of a child doing each pose help children see how to do each pose. Then, children are asked to imagine they are in a large hot air balloon, under the sea, planting a magical seed or living in a tree house! Each page of text guides the imagination, and a full-color illustration on the facing page adds a little creativity to each idea.
Still Quiet Place – Mindfulness for Young Children
This would be a great album to play when you lie down for a nap with your child, or when you just want to relax. Dr. Amy Saltzman narrates this cd, and she gently instructs listeners to find their still quiet place. She notes that this place is available all the time. “It’s always inside you,” she says.
Still Quiet Place – Mindfulness for Teens
Facing the stresses of teenage life head-on, this album aims to give adolescents tools for being mindful and being happy. After a brief introduction, the second track begins, aptly, “Give it a rest …” then into a soothing guided medidation that enourages letting go of the stresses of homework, school gossip, family life, etc. Dr. Amy Saltzman narrates, and speaks softly, smoothly and calmly. In the ninth track “Movin’” Saltzman instructs the listener to hear her instructions and then crank up a cd of their choosing, and move, paying attention to the effects of just being with the music and nothing else. This CD is something I wish I had when I was a teen!
Kings and Queens of the Forest – Yoga songs for kids Vol.2
This CD by Kira Willeytakes kids on a new adventure with every song! Folksy and soft yet upbeat, this album gets kids up and moving! Whether it be doing the cricket hop or tapping a drum, each number engages little ones to skip to the beat and be silly at the same time!
Whale Yoga -for Kids
This interactive DVD is great for younger kids! My daughter, Indigo, 5, and her friend were glued to the TV and mimicking whale yoga moves and waves the entire time! Throughout the instruction, the yoga teacher speaks slowly and articulately, giving simple instructions kids can easily follow. She takes everyday yoga poses such as Mountain Pose and (the pose where you bend down and touch your toes), Cobra pose etc and turns them into fun whale yoga poses the kids just love. Images of real whales between poses were a hit!
Grounded – The Elevator Series
This game features poses on flashcards that demonstrate how the pose should look. Adult instructions and suggestions to talk about the pose on the back of the cards, so you can give more instruction to your child. The cards also what the effects of the poses are on the body. When kids are in a focusing mode, this seems to work and they love to try new poses and do “harder ones” after a few easier standing poses. My daughter said she liked it and would like to continue to play the game. The poses correspond with the chakra system.
This is the flash cards, to go! Pose chips in a convenient travel tube allow you to take the pose cards on the road!
rainbow kids yoga ABC yoga cards
These are great for working with the alphabet and yoga poses all in one! These cards feature colorful, whimsical images of children in costumes of animals and mythical creatures. Each card has a costumed child in a yoga pose that is shaped like a letter of the alphabet. No words, just pictures, with an intro card for adults. Pure fun all around.
Yoga 4 Classrooms
Written by Lisa Flynn, Illustrated by James Vaughn
This great set of educational cards can be used in the classroom or at home. It starts with six basic concepts: Let’s Breathe, At Your Desk, Stand Strong, Loosen Up, Be Well, and Imagination Vacation. Each concept is accompanied with text and an images for adults to review, and then the fun begins. This oversized set of cards shows illustrations of students doing certain things that relate to each concept. One, titled Balloon Breath, for example focuses on calm, focus and clarity. It shows a student clutching a balloon at her belly. On the reverse side are instructions on how to do the balloon breath. Each card also features fun facts for adults to read that relate again to the concepts.