A wonderful book to reinforce the concepts of mindfulness and kindness in your kids yoga class!

Once I started teaching kids yoga classes, I began looking at Children’s books in a different way. Instead of just reading the stories, I now read kids books wondering “what yoga poses can we explore with this story?” and “how does the message of the book relate to yoga?”  What I have found is that there are so many wonderful books out there!!  And, some really are perfect for a Yoga class. Take for example, The Busy Beaver, by Nicholas Oldland. I found this gem in the Vancouver Airport coming home from a work trip…I thought my 6 year old would just love it. The story tells the tale of a busy but careless beaver who rarely takes the time to think about the consequences of his actions. His reckless behavior eventually lands him in the hospital after a tree he fells falls lands on his noggin. Through his rehabilitation (including YOGA!!) the beaver learns to be still and patient and he eventually goes back home and makes amends with the creatures he had affected with his recklessness.BusyBeaverBlog

I used this book in a recent kids class where we discussed the concept of mindfulness. At the beginning of class, we all practiced mindful breathing…it is amazing how still they sat for this. After a short warm up, we read the book together, acting out scenes with various yoga poses as we went along.  For example, we grew into a forest of trees that eventually became toppling trees when the beaver chewed through our trunks. We had fun pretending to be the injured beaver, slowly making our way back onto our feet. We moved through a flowing warrior sequence as rehabilitation, and we pretended to be the beavers friends, bear, moose and a family of birds. The kids LOVED this book and there were a lot of giggles along the way! At the end of the book the Busy Beaver goes to sleep and the kiddos rested on their mats in savasana with lavender eye pillows and soft music. We wrapped up class by talking about the importance of being careful and mindful, being kind to friends and taking care of the environment.

Let me know if you end up using this book in your class!!  I hope your kids love it as much as the ones in our class did!!

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