Are you looking for easy yoga ideas 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 sixth theme is “earth” in honor of Earth Day on April 22.
Amazon affiliate links are included in this post. Enter the Earth Day Giveaway below.
Though Earth Day happens only once a year, creating an earth-friendly lifestyle for our children is important. Even while they are young, we can talk to children about our impact on the earth and share the beauty of nature. Even an activity as simple as getting out into nature on a regular basis will encourage children to be curious about the environment.
As you probably know, I’m obsessed with children’s books, and when I was a teacher, some of my favorite titles were earth focused. My oldest favorites are The Lorax by Dr. Seuss and The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. My newest favorite is Change the World Before Bedtime by Mark Kimball Moulton, Josh Chalmers, and Karen Good. Don’t miss the Earth Day Giveaway below, where we are giving away more than twenty books and songs.
Teaching environmental education was a strong passion of mine as an international primary school teacher, and that’s why I try to weave eco-conscious concepts into our yoga books for kids. Sophia is concerned about the woodchoppers cutting down trees in Sophia’s Jungle Adventure, and Luke is worried about the trash on the beach in Luke’s Beach Day.
Learning about the planet Earth 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 your child’s thinking, ultimately making learning more fun and engaging.
April Theme: EARTH
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 this Earth Yoga post that includes:
- one breathing technique
- one focus yoga pose
- a three-pose flow sequence
- one focus yoga book
The “EARTH” FOCUS BREATH is woodchopper breath.
Stand tall in Mountain Pose and take a few deep breaths. Then take your feet mat-width apart. Clasp your hands together in front of your body. Take a long breath in while taking your hands above your head, and then on a vigorous exhale with your mouth open, forcefully take your hands down between your legs. Hang your head and completely let go of all the tension in your body. Close your eyes, if that feels comfortable, and repeat the steps: long exhale with hands overhead, followed by vigorous exhale and hands down between your legs. Pretend to be cutting a log for your family campfire. Repeat this breathing technique a few times, allowing your children to find their own rhythm and become aware of their breath.
After the woodchopper breath practice, stand tall in Mountain Pose again and come back to breathing naturally. Let your children feel the effects of this energizing breath technique. You could also use this practice to discuss the advantages and disadvantages of tree-cutting. You will find this woodchopper breath in our jungle yoga book, Sophia’s Jungle Adventure.
The “EARTH” FOCUS YOGA POSE is Squat Pose.
Stand tall in Mountain Pose with your toes touching and ankles slightly apart. Then bend your legs to come to a squat position with your knees and toes together. You could take your hands in front of your heart as if you are in prayer then take them to the ground for balance. Your ankles will most likely be off the ground, depending on your flexibility.
From this squat pose, you could drop your head, round your back, and pretend to be the planet Earth or a seed in the garden about to grow. Take a few moments to take a few deep breaths in this squat pose while thinking about the beauty of planet Earth. Think of the birds, mammals, forests, oceans, jungles, weather, and mountains.
The “EARTH” FOCUS YOGA FLOW is Squat Pose, Tree Pose, and Extended Mountain Pose.
1. Squat Pose – Seed
Stand tall in Mountain Pose with your toes touching and ankles slightly apart. Then bend your legs to come to a squat position with knees and toes together. Drop your head and round your back, pretending to be a seed about to grow out of the ground.
2. Tree Pose – Tree
From Squat Pose, come up slowly to a standing position. Shift to standing on one leg, bend the knee of your free leg, place the sole of your foot on the inner thigh of your standing leg, and balance. Sway like a tree.
3. Extended Mountain Pose – Hello to the Sun
Stand tall in Mountain Pose and, on an inhale, take your arms up over head to the sky. Look up and say hello to the sun. Exhale and bring your arms back along your sides.
You can flow gently over and over through these three poses. As you come through Tree Pose, switch sides each time so you stand on each foot for an equal number of times. Talk to your children about other things they see and hear in nature. Invent your own earth-themed yoga poses or check out our Yoga Poses for Kids page for inspiration.
Throughout the month, you could use these three earth-inspired yoga poses as a base and add other nature yoga poses or breathing techniques to extend the children’s learning. Follow their interests and needs. You will know if they need a more calming yoga experience or something more dynamic and active to help release pent-up energy. Check out our Earth Day Yoga 14-yoga sequence for ideas, as well.
The “EARTH-FRIENDLY” FOCUS YOGA BOOK is Sophia’s Jungle Adventure.
Join Sophia’s jungle adventure. Fly like a toucan, slither like a snake, and flutter like a butterfly as you act out this journey through a Costa Rican jungle. The storybook includes a list of kids yoga poses and a parent-teacher guide. This yoga book for ages three to seven is more than a storybook—it’s also a unique experience for children.
Sophia’s Jungle Adventure is also available in Spanish, French, Portuguese, Russian, German, and Chinese. To extend your child’s learning, check out the matching Sophia’s Jungle Adventure Yoga Cards and Sophia’s Jungle Adventure Coloring Book, as well.
|Sophia’s Jungle Adventure||Sophia’s Jungle Adventure
|Sophia’s Jungle Adventure
What are your favorite earth yoga poses for kids?
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We hope that you enjoyed these Earth Day yoga ideas. To find out about other thematic yoga sequences, join our weekly Kids Yoga Stories newsletter by adding your name and email to the box at the top of the page.
Spanish and Yoga “Earth” Activities
Check out these links below from Spanish Playground and Kids Yoga Stories for easy Spanish-easy active ideas for your celebration of “earth” month:
|Earth Day in Spanish|
Earth Day Books and Music Giveaway
To inspire earth-friendly practices with your family, I’ve teamed up with several kid bloggers to bring you this awesome Earth Day giveaway. Several publishers have offered earth-themed books and music prizes for your Earth Day celebrations. Hopefully, these wonderful resources will inspire a love of nature in your children and motivate them to make a difference in the world. Amazon affiliate links are below for your convenience.
Two Earth Book Reviews, Crafty Moms Share
Every Day on Our Bikes, The Piri-Piri Lexicon
Celebrate Earth Day with Kids All Year Round, Mama Smiles
Earth Day Resources, Eva Varga
Celebrate Earth Day in Spanish, Spanish Playground
One Planet, One People, Creative World of Varya
Learning about African Manatees, All Done Monkey
EARTH DAY GIVEAWAY
PRIZE PACK #1
Water Rolls, Water Rises, by Pat Mora
Celebrate the wonders of the water on planet Earth with this poetic and illustrative bilingual book.
Call Me Tree, by Maya Christina Gonzalez
Act out this beautiful bilingual story following a young child mimicking the growth of a tree.
Kings & Queens of the Forest CD, by Kira Willey
Act out a journey to the forest with Kira Willey’s enchanting yoga-inspired music.
Imaginations 2, by Carolyn Clarke
Use guided imagery to explore nature while learning to calm the mind and body with these relaxation stories.
Sophia’s Jungle Adventure, by Giselle Shardlow
Join Sophia and her family on a jungle adventure while learning to appreciate jungle life and doing yoga along the way.
Every Day is Earth Day Kids Yoga Lesson Plan PDF, by Next Generation Yoga
Create an earth-themed yoga session with this kids yoga lesson plan.
Compost Stew, by Mary McKenna Siddals
Dig into composting with this engaging rhyming text.
Too Much Junk song, by Elska
Get inspired to enjoy nature and simplify your life with this new musical adventure.
Backyard Garden CD, by Earthworm Ensemble
Celebrate nature, green living, and gardening with this uplifting new music.
EARTH DAY GIVEAWAY
PRIZE PACK #2
Change the World Before Bedtime, by Mark Kimball Moulton, Josh Chalmers, and Karen Good
Find out how the simple things in life that can inspire huge differences that change the world.
Picture a Tree, by Barbara Reid
Discover new ways to experience trees in this book with stunning imagery.
This Tree Counts, by Alison Formento and Sarah Snow
Practice counting with animals that live in trees.
Miss Fox’s Class Goes Green, by Eileen Spinelli and Anne Kennedy
Join Miss Fox as she teaches her forest animal students how to go green.
In the Garden with Dr. Carver, by Susan Grigsby and Nicole Tadgell
Step into the historical world of Dr. Carver as he teaches children about gardening.
What’s So Special About Planet Earth?, by Robert E. Wells
Learn how planet Earth is different from other planets.
Polar Bear, Why is Your World Melting?, by Robert E. Wells
Learn why and how the world is getting warmer and what we can do about it.
EARTH DAY GIVEAWAY
PRIZE PACK #3
Earth Day CD and Recycled Musical Activities eBook, by Daria Marmaluk Hajioannou
Sing and dance to catchy folk music to celebrate our beautiful rainbow world.
Nature Anatomy, by Julia Rothman
Take a look at nature in a new way with this book that explains all about the nature with sketches.
Catch the Wind, Harness the Sun, by Michael J. Caduto
Learn about renewable energy with 22 activities on producing and using it.
Ecology eBook – Ecology Explorations, by Eva Varga
Explore your local ecosystems with this hands-on ten-week life science curriculum.
When the Animals Saved Earth, by Alexis York Lumbard
Read a tale about how animals teach humans to restore balance in nature.
Just Like Me, Climbing a Tree, by Durga Yael Bernhard
Explore trees all over the world and see what a child sees when climbing those trees
EARTH DAY GIVEAWAY
FREE DOWNLOAD FOR EVERYONE
The Garden Classroom Journal, by Nurture Store
Download this free Garden Classroom journal to record your gardening experiences.
Some of the resources above were given to us bloggers free for review, but the decision to include them in the giveaway was entirely our own. Please read the full Contest Rules below for details.
We look forward to your entries. Thank you for taking the time to participate in our giveaway. Please let me know if you have any questions or problems with the Rafflecopter tool below by sending me an e-mail at giselle at kidsyogastories dot com.
Earth Day Giveaway
To enter the contest, sign in using your Facebook or e-mail account and click on the different ways to enter. You can enter every day, using this Rafflecopter online giveaway tool.
- Entries are open worldwide.
- You can be any age to enter.
- Participation in the contest constitutes that you agree to the Contest Rules.
- Please enter using the Rafflecopter tool above, obtaining points as follow the different options.
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- No purchase is necessary.
- You must enter the contest giveaway with a valid e-mail address. The winner will be notified by e-mail, and at that time, we will request a mailing address. The winner must respond within 72 hours, or we will pick a different winner. The shipping of the books and CDs can take some time, depending on the winner’s location. Each publisher will ship the books separately and will cover the shipping costs.
- If you have any questions, e-mail Giselle directly at giselle at kidsyogastories dot com.
- The contest closes on Tuesday, April 15th, 2015, midnight EST.
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