This month for Virtual Book Club for Kids, we are spotlighting books by Denise Fleming.
She is the author and illustrator of twenty children’s books, and she’s been painting since a young age. The Ohio native describes her books as a family effort. I love that because my yoga stories are also a family collaboration.
Denise’s books have fantastic rhyming text with only a few words on each page. She says that she starts with hundreds of words then narrows the text down to a few strong action words. She creates her unique illustrations with the papermaking process of pulp painting—it’s a fascinating art. My daughter and I especially love her nature and farm animal books.
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Some of our favorite books by Denise Fleming are:
Yoga Fun with Numbers and Books
Many of Denise Fleming’s books lend themselves perfectly to yoga fun. Today, I’ll focus on learning to count to ten through movement by using her counting book Count!. To get started, clear a space, take off your shoes and socks, and make sure everyone is wearing comfortable clothing. The first numbers in the book are matched with five animal yoga poses, which I’ve described below to give you an idea. Use these suggested yoga poses or invent your own. Think about how each of these animals moves in the wild. Let’s have fun with numbers, books, and yoga!
Counting to Five with Animal Yoga Poses
using Count! by Denise Fleming
1 – One Gnu – Cat Pose
(On all fours, pretend to walk like a gnu. “ONE.”)
2 – Two Zebras – Handstand Prep
(Lift up into Downward Facing-Dog Pose in an upside-down V shape. Gently kick up your right leg like a jumping zebra.
“ONE.” Gently kick up the left leg. “TWO.”)
3 – Three Crocodiles – Plank Pose
(Come down to a plank on your hands and toes like a crocodile lurking in the swamp.
“ONE.” Come down to your belly. “TWO.” Press up to a plank pose again. “THREE.”)
4 – Four Kangaroos – Chair Pose
(Stand tall in Mountain Pose with your feet hip-width apart, bend your knees, and hop four times like a kangaroo.
“ONE. TWO. THREE. FOUR.”)
5 – Five Giraffes – Extended Mountain Pose
(Stand tall in Mountain Pose, look up, and reach your arms up to the sky. Pretend to eat leaves from the tall branches.
“ONE. TWO. THREE. FOUR. FIVE.”)
What yoga poses can you create for five to ten?
My daughter practicing the cat pose like a gnu.
Ready for a fun yoga challenge?
Bring out Denise’s spring-themed books, look at the list of kids yoga poses, and make up your own spring animal yoga sequence. Then tell us about it in the comments below.
For example, in the book In the Tall, Tall Grass, we meet a collection of garden animals. How could you act out these animals with yoga poses?
Caterpillar, hummingbirds, bees, birds, ants, snakes, mole, beetle, frog, rabbit, firefly, and bat.
In the book In the Small, Small Pond, we meet animals that live in a pond. How do these animals behave?
Frog, goose, dragonfly, turtle, heron, minnow, swallow, lobster, raccoon, and muskrat.
Yoga for kids is all about using your imagination and mimicking your natural surroundings. Hope you enjoyed your spring animal yoga!
If you enjoyed this numbers and animals yoga experience, you might like our next counting yoga book, 123 African Safari, which will be available in May, 2014. Get a notification about its release date by signing up for our weekly Kids Yoga Stories newsletter. Simply add your email address to the box at the top of the page.
This post is part of this month’s Virtual Book Club for Kids. Join us every month as we explore different authors and offer fun book activities to enjoy the books.
Participating Bloggers: Toddler Approved– The Educators’ Spin On It– Rainy Day Mum– 3 Dinosaurs– Learn~Play~Imagine – Crafty Moms Share – Reading Confetti– Inspiration Laboratories – Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas – Kids Yoga Stories – Enchanted Homeschooling Mom– Ready-Set-Read – Boy Mama Teacher Mama – PlayDrMom – Fantastic Fun and Learning – Growing Book by Book– Royal Baloo – The Outlaw Mom® Blog – Kitchen Counter Chronicles – Teach Preschool – Mama Smiles – Coffe Cups and Crayons – Juggling With Kids – Here Come the Girls