Are you looking for easy animal yoga poses for kids?
Welcome back to our monthly theme project that focuses on a single breathing technique, yoga pose, and yoga book. I have also included a three-pose flow sequence, a Spanish-integration idea (thanks to Spanish Playground), and links to other theme resources. This simple plan gives you one thing to focus on each month so it’s easier to bring the benefits of yoga to your children.
Our seventh theme is “animals.”
We just took my daughter to the zoo for her fourth birthday. As we walked through the zoo, I had memories of her as an infant acting out her favorite animals through yoga poses for kids. Her first wild animal yoga poses were the elephant, the giraffe, and the lion. My daughter used her body to communicate before she had words to express herself.
Just like the Indian yogis who invented yoga poses thousands of years ago, children enjoy mimicking their surroundings through movement. Practicing animal yoga poses for kids is an easy way for children to discover the physical postures of yoga – because children generally love animals, and they love to move their bodies.
For this month’s animal yoga experience, you could choose a specific animal theme, such as wild animals, animals around the world, jungle animals, arctic animals, zoo animals, pets, or farm animals. After choosing your animal category, brainstorm a list of animals that fit that theme. Then act them out through yoga poses for kids. The animals listed below are part of our “animals around the world” celebration found in our bedtime yoga book.
Learning about animals from around the world can come from discussions, reading books, doing related kids’ activities, and art projects, but you and your children can also learn through breathing techniques and yoga poses. Brain research shows us that adding movement to the learning experience stimulates children’s thinking, ultimately making learning more fun and engaging.
May Theme: YOGA ANIMALS
One of the challenges readers have shared over the years is deciding how to add yoga into their curriculum, classes, or home life with ease and simplicity. There are tons of ways to integrate yoga, but teachers and parents with limited time often find it difficult to focus on quick ideas.
For this reason, we have put together a monthly theme post that includes:
- one breathing technique
- one focus yoga pose
- a three-pose flow sequence
- one focus yoga book
The “ANIMAL” FOCUS BREATH is lion’s breath.
Come to an all-fours position (or Hero Pose). Take a few breaths to neutralize your spine. Then take a deep breath in through your nose. On the exhale, look forward and simultaneously open your mouth, stick out your tongue, and exhale audibly, making a “ha” sound. Breath in through your nose and repeat the steps, ending by exhaling through your mouth with your tongue out, pretending to be a lion. Repeat the lion’s breathe a few times while it feels comfortable, then come back to an all-fours position and breath naturally. Lion’s breath is an energizing breath technique and a great way for children to build breath awareness.
The “ANIMAL” FOCUS YOGA POSE is Cat Pose.
On your hands and knees, come to a tabletop position. Spread your fingers. Check that your shoulders and elbows are directly over your hands and that your hips are directly over your knees. Your back should be flat, and your neck should be in a neutral position while you look down at the floor. On an exhale, gently drop your head, press your tummy up, round your spine, and tuck in your tailbone. Enjoy the cat stretch. On an inhale, come back slowly and gently to a neutral flat-back position.
The “ANIMAL” FOCUS YOGA FLOW is Downward-Facing Dog Pose, Cat Pose, and Extended Child’s Pose.
1. Downward-Facing Dog Pose – Sheepdog
Come down to your hands and feet, with your buttocks up in the air in an upside-down V shape. Ensure your spine is straight and your palms are flat. Stretch and bark like a sheepdog.
2. Cat Pose – Lion
Shift forward and drop your knees to an all-fours position. Round your back and tuck your chin into your chest. Pretend to be an African lion. Look forward for a lion’s breath.
3. Extended Child’s Pose –Turtle
Drop your buttocks to your heels, slowly bring your forehead down to rest in front of your knees, and reach your arms out in front of you. Place the palms of your hands flat on the floor. Take a few deep breaths. Pretend to be a sea turtle.
You can flow gently over and over through these three poses. Talk to your children about other animals that live around the world. Invent your own animal yoga poses or check out our Yoga Poses for Kids page for inspiration.
Throughout the month, you could use these three animal-inspired yoga poses as a base and add other animal yoga poses or breathing techniques to extend the children’s learning. Follow their interests and needs. You will know if their yoga experience should be more calming or if they need something more dynamic and active to help release their pent-up energy. Check out our other animal yoga sequences listed below, as well.
Animal yoga poses for kids
The “ANIMAL” FOCUS YOGA BOOK is Good Night, Animal World.
Help your children sleep better with this yoga bedtime story for toddlers and preschoolers, Good Night, Animal World. Say good night to the animals of the world through calming yoga poses for kids. Join six yoga kids as you perch like a bald eagle, crouch like a tiger, and curl up like a sloth. Included is a list of yoga poses and a parent guide with tips on creating a successful bedtime experience. The book is suitable for ages two to five. Try the matching Good Night, Animal World Yoga Cards for creative and independent play.
|Good Night, Animal World||Good Night, Animal World
Spanish and Yoga “Animal” Activities
Check out these links below from Spanish Playground and Kids Yoga Stories for easy Spanish-easy active ideas for your celebration of “animals” month:
|Wild Animal Activities
|Farm Animals Yoga|
|Zoo Animals Yoga||African Animals Yoga|
|Arctic Animals||Australian Animals|
|Animal Friends Yoga||Jungle Animals Yoga|
Other Easy Spanish-Easy Yoga Themes
Other animal-themed links
Check out these links below for other animal-themed activities for children:
Nighttime Animal Adventure Relaxation Story, Bambino Yoga
Endangered Animals: Learning about African Manatees, All Done Monkey
Endangered Animals: Learning about Andean Condors, All Done Monkey
Jumping Animals Game, The Inspired Treehouse
Animal Tag, The Inspired Treehouse
Animal-Themed Kids Yoga Lesson Plans, Next Generation Yoga
African Safari– about animals one would see on an African Safari.
Things with Wings– about animals, bird and insects with wings.
Farm to Table– lots of fun farm animals from cows to bees.
Imagine a Rainforest– about the amazing animals of the rainforest.
Animal-Themed Book Lists, Growing Book by Book
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