One of my friends is an experienced mindfulness teacher.
She sent me her weekly newsletter and within that there is mention of Dr Rick Hanson – the psychologist – with a link to one of his excellent presentations.
It was so good I thought I would include it in my regular blog (see below).
But it got me thinking.
Dr Hanson talks about the importance of him learning meditation skills, especially to help him recover from the difficult times he had growing up – you know the regular growing pains most of us go through and the feeling of not fitting in or being quite good enough.
He talks about how mindfulness has helped fill the ‘hole in his heart’ that these experiences created. Continue reading
Emotional vs Academic Intelligence
The other week we caught the end of the TV show ‘Child Genius’ – where children with (usually) a high score on Mensa take part in a quiz to become the Child Genius for that year.
These kids demonstrate an amazing array of skills – from their ability to remember facts to computing arithmetic sums at lightening speed. It was impressive.
What was not so impressive was watching the stress these children experienced. The emotions they were feeling were bubbling under the surface (some cried) and yet the parents seemed to focus on scores and winning. Continue reading
I had good intentions…
I wanted to write an post about perception and how we what we see and perceive is what we experience. It’s how our brain works and how it helps us interpret life.
If our brain is wired differently then it can be challenging to respond to life in the way we want to (until we become aware of this – aka having a meditation practice makes you aware of this!)
I had an extraordinary trip to the States recently.
It seemed to tie in with how I feel (strongly) about teaching kids and young people meditation.
I am a passionate advocate for meditation becoming a natural part of the school day. It should be introduced into the school curriculum in the same way that we include the sciences and the arts.
When it (eventually) is introduced (hopefully in my lifetime) it will help both the stressed-out teaching staff and the overwhelmed students. Continue reading
There’s a whole story behind the name ‘connected kids’.
Originally we had called our programme after the first book ‘Calm Kids – help children relax with mindful activities‘. However the name didn’t sit comfortably with me. I felt a bit ‘icky’ with the idea of adults trying to ‘calm kids’ down. Meditation isn’t about this. It is so much more.
Yes, ultimately we want kids to feel centered, grounded, ‘calm’ and peaceful. But many adults (especially parents) can’t imagine their kids being calm… when they are so… full of life!
Plus, some adults approach the whole idea of teaching meditation as ‘being in control’ and have a fixed idea of what kids (and teens) meditation should look like. Not so. Continue reading
I’m excited to announce that I’ll be offering a practical talk on how to
teach kids and teens mindfulness and meditation on the following dates:
Wednesday 22nd April 2015 – Innerleithen, Scotland
The talk starts at 7.30pm and last 90 minutes.
The session will be with, Lorraine Murray, author of ‘Calm Kids’ and founder of the Connected Kids programme.
There are limited places so pre-booking is required. However you can bring a friend for free!
The talk costs £10 per person and there will be the opportunity to purchase a signed copy of her book on the evening.
If you choose to take any of the Connected Kids training, your payment can be offset against course costs.
The talk is to help any adult interested in teaching meditation to:
- understand the benefits of teaching meditation
- hints and tips on how to teach kids/teens
- working with special needs and autism
- ‘ask the expert’ through the Q & A session
- experience a taste of mindful meditation
The talk is for adults only, though teens can attend.
So as you can imagine, I live and breathe anything to do with teaching kids meditation, children’s mental health and (teen’s) wellbeing. As a result, I collect a lot of information on this.
If you are on our Facebook page, Twitter or Calm Kids group on FB, then you’ll know that we have become a ‘library’ (so to speak) of useful articles and information, tips and ideas on these subjects).
So I felt it was high time to put many of them in one easy to find place.
One of the issues that we face as children (and all the way through life) is recognising what we feel, when we feel it.
I have been practising meditation for years, yet just the other day I felt really flat and couldn’t name my feeling.
It was so frustrating and disorientating. I went for a walk and noticed where I could feel it (in my core) and eventually realised it was the energy of resentment (a form of anger). My logical brain wanted to work out what it was and why it was there, but my mindfulness experience taught me just to sit with it and let it come up to the surface. Fighting and resisting it was only going to fuel the flames.
Someone just emailed me with a great question which I’m sure many people think about.
“just curious as to what age you think would be the earliest to teach children meditation/mindfulness and what would be the ideal age to begin?”
It is the season to by jolly (so they say) but the festive period can be quite stressful for kids as well as the adults.
You see kids pick up on the stress of the adults around them (parents and teachers) and it then becomes a vicious cycle… the more frustrated you get with the kids, the mo
re they feel and react to your stress levels. Plus there is such pressure on children to have the latest toy or gift – as if that is a measure of your love for them (although some think it comes from Santa).