Meditation with Children I DharmaCrafts Blog

Meditation with Children

Meditation is not just for adults.  Daily meditation has many proven benefits and can be used as a coping mechanism.  Many skills that are taught to children are things that they learn when they need to, but coping mechanisms should be taught before they are needed.  It is much harder to teach a child conscious breathing and meditation while they are struggling.  Teaching your kids about meditation from an early age can help them develop coping skills that will prove useful throughout the rest of their lives.  The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is now encouraging parents to share meditation with their children, and even teachers too, in hopes to help incorporate mindfulness into kids’ daily routines.    

In addition to being a useful coping mechanism meditation has a variety of other benefits too.  Incorporating meditation into your child’s daily routine can help improve their ability to focus and learn in school, help develop self regulation skills, can vastly improve sleeping habits, and can reduce stress and anxiety patterns.  Similarly, working with kids to help introduce them to breathing awareness can help lower both blood pressure and heart rates.  Meditation can, also, be used as a tool to help treat symptoms of PTSD.  A trial of 300 low income minority urban middle schoolers showed that using school based mindfulness instruction led to improved psychological functioning and lower levels of PTSD symptoms.

Meditation with Children I DharmaCrafts

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Nice little piece about meditation with children. Children are so much more intuitive than we adults give them credit for. I believe that if we ourselves are making time for meditation and bring children in on our practice, their curiosity will make them sit, but it’s their intuitive nature that will have them understand at some level the purpose of these moments of quiet stillness as they emulate the adult(s) in their lives.

And to Patrick Auge’s point above (maybe below, depending on how this feed makes the order of posts appear), I feel that just like a piano lesson or gymnastics or soccer practice, although kids may not always appear to enjoy and appreciate the work going into whatever their extracurriculars are, I have heard time and again from adults that these things they learned as children bring them a nourishing, peaceful comfort in those low points in life. Meditation, mindfulness, and breath are things people can always rely on. And unlike a piano, the apparatus required for these activities are always with us! :)

Sonia Trepetin

I am a full-time professional Aikido teacher and meditation is an important part of our training before and after class. In the present situation, we have been holding classes on line. I have noticed improvements in children’s behavior when parents/teacher’s communication and support are present and that meditation topics are supported at home. I think that regardless of whether children are receptive or not, exposure at an early age will make a difference when causes and conditions meet later on in their lives.

Patrick Augé

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