Meditation for Children
Meditation for children is like fish to water, but in order to teach our children we need to teach ourselves to meditate first.
At what age should a child learn to meditate?
In my opinion, it's whenever a child is ready. If your child is ready to sit still and meditate, you can easily instruct her in pranayama (deep breathing) to start off the meditation, and then let her breathing relax while she sits quietly with you.
I think most children can understand the concept of meditation for children by age seven. Even though they still can't understand abstract concepts at this stage, they will understand the concept of meditation as sitting down quietly, deep breathing, easy breathing, and relaxing.
Meditation instruction in six easy steps
The easiest way to teach meditation for children, even before the age of seven, is at bedtime. But remember, a child has to be willing. If not, wait till your child is ready ready.
You can tell your child a story, in a soft, slow voice, about a beach, or a magical garden... whatever her favorite place is. Make it up as you go along. Before you start ask her which favorite toy, or character she wants to take with her.
- Ask your child to lie down, close her eyes and take a deep breath. She should feel her tummy rise on the inhale and fall on the exhale, then tell her to breathe normally.
- Ask her to relax her body and feel it sink into the bed.
- She's now walking on the beach with you, or with cuddles, her favorite toy or her favorite Princess character. she can feel the soft, warm sand under her feet and between her toes.
- There's a soft warm breeze blowing. She can feel it on her face... That's the wind kissing her face!
- It's nice and warm, and she can see some small fluffy white clouds drifting in the sky. She watches them drift slowly out of sight. Some of them have shapes, like a fluffy bunny for example. As it drifts away it wiggles it's tail, there's a little white kitty cat, then a flock of white fluffy sheep, and there's a white poodle that wags it tail as it drifts out of sight.
- The bright orange sun is about to set and she sits down on the soft warm sand with cuddles and the Princess to watch the sun go down.
- They can hear the whoosh sounds of the waves. (You can make the whoosh sound 2 or 3 times). They're all tired and they lie down after the sun sets. They see the moon and the stars rising one by one. The twinkling stars are winking at them. Here's a bright one that's so close, and there's another one so far away. They begin to count the stars and they fall asleep in the moonlight.
Meditation for children has many benefits, and once your child gets used to this kind of meditation, it will be easy to introduce her to a sitting down meditations and later on to walking meditations.
Pages on Meditation:
How to Meditate
Leave Meditation for Children and Go To Empowerment and Kids Home