Instructor: Pam Haldeman
Community: Ages/Grades?, Setting?, 50 minutes
Plan Creation Date: June 15, 2013
Yoga Calm Principle/Lesson Goal: Stillness
Materials: Mats, Ground Rules Poster, Positive Talk Poster, CD-Anjali, Fresh Flowers, Candles (Battery operated), Hoberman sphere, Oil and cotton balls
Welcome and Introductions:
- Welcome: As children enter have them choose a mat with a cotton ball of oil and sit down with legs crossed. Talk about the space between the eyes to place the oil which helps us relax.
- Intro: What is yoga? Why we are here-to unite the Body, Heart, and Mind using breathing, yoga poses, games and activities.
- Principle:Today’s class we will be learning about stillness; the ability to quiet the mind and body; to be self-aware; to develop sensitivity, self-control, and self-regulation.
- Positive Talk: Review poster. (Good to start out with positive rather than rules.)
- Ground Rules: Review poster. Also share that when they hear the chime they are to return to their mats and quiet their voices and wait for directions. Practice by having them move around and talk, then ring the chime. Compliment students and have them turn and share a compliment with a neighbor.
- Belly breathing – in seated position – Sit on the floor, bend your knees, and cross your legs at the shins. Flex your feet to keep your knees in alignment. Feel both sitting bones firmly pressing into the floor. Lengthen your spine by sitting up straight. Place your hands on your thighs with your palms facing either up or down. Notice how your body feels today-Close your eyes or look down so you can move inside-10 seconds-Blink the eyes open and gaze at the Hoberman Sphere (I demonstrate and give to one of the students to lead) 12 times. (Breathe through your nose, relax the abdomen muscles, imagine “breathing into the belly”, slow the breath, pause between inhale and exhale. Deep, even breathing creates relaxed alertness, ideal for learning.) Compliment student and ask for volunteers to compliment student leader.
- Child – Kneel on the floor. With tops of the feet on the floor, touch the big toes together and sit back on the heels. Pull arms alongside body. Relax your neck, hips, and back. Let your head be heavy. Breathe into your back and let it puff up like a parachute.
- Back Breathing – Pair up. One student takes Child pose while the other kneels alongside and places their hands on the first student’s low back. The student in the Child pose breathes slowly into the low back and into the partner’s hands, feeling the hands rise and fall like waves in an ocean, or like a parachute or sail filling with air.
- Ring chime to signal children to return and sit on their mats.
- Volcano Breath – Place palms together at the heart-Take a slow, deep breath through the nose and pause when the lungs are full-Hold the pause, finding stillness inside and bring the arms up over the head-Exhale and slowly “explode the volcano” showering ourselves with stillness, moving arms out to the side and then back together at heart. Then close your eyes and listen to the stillness for 30 seconds.
- Pulse Rate – Find your pulse-Take two fingers to the side of the mouth-Tip head slightly back and draw a line down with fingers into groove along the neck-Press gently to find pulse-raise your hand when pulse is found-Listen to the rhythm of your heart-15 seconds-Share-talk about how you might feel when your heart rate beats really fast-now how might you feel when your heart rate is slow?
- Mountain – Stand with feet hip-width apart, pointing straight ahead, and press them down into the earth. Stretch your arms straight alongside your body, with energy reaching out of your fingertips. Lift belly, head, and heart. Shoulders are back and down. Look straight ahead. Your body is activated (firmed toward the centerline). Feel the strength of a mountain.
- Upward Mountain – (From Mountain pose) Raise arms straight up overhead. Palms face each other and fingers extend up. Press feet down and lift belly, head, and heart; shoulders back and down. Looks like a touchdown! Imagine sending laser beams out through your fingertips.
- Forward Bend – Place feet hip-width apart and point them straight ahead. Bend at the hips and hang arms, head, and spine toward the floor (like a rag doll). Touch the floor with your fingers. If your fingers don’t reach, bend your knees. Imagine your back, head, and arms flowing down like a waterfall. Breathe into your back. To transition to Downward Dog, walk out your hands until they are under shoulders with knees under and slightly behind hips.
- Downward Dog – Point fingers straight ahead and spread them like rays of the sun. Press down through the four corners of the hands and feet. Activate and straighten arms. Turn toes under and press thighs and hips toward wall behind you, creating an “A” shape. Keep arms straight with head between your arms and chest slightly lifting up to create a flat back from head to hips. Knees can be slightly bent to keep back from rounding up.
- Plank – Come forward with your shoulders over or slightly behind your wrists, arms straight, on your toes. Lift legs, hips, belly and head until back is straight like a board. Tailbone is kept tucked toward the floor. Press out through heels and top of head. Keep breathing!
- Cobra – Lower knees to the mat and lower belly to the floor. With palms flat on floor under shoulders. Tops of feet on the floor with feet close together. Place palms flat on floor and under shoulders. Fingers point straight ahead. Press four corners of hands down. Make a slow hissing sound and lift head, heart, and belly. Keep shoulders back and down, elbows bent close to body, tops of feet on floor. Inhale and come back up to Downward Dog.
- Downward Dog – Come to all fours with hands under shoulders and knees under and slightly behind hips. Point fingers straight ahead and spread them like rays of the sun. Press down through the four corners of the hands and feet. Activate and straighten arms. Turn toes under and press thighs and hops toward wall behind you, creating an “A” shape. Keep arms straight with head between your arms and chest slightly lifting up to create a flat back from head to hips. Knees can be slightly bent to keep back from rounding up. Hold stillness while breathing for 15 seconds (to begin and gradually lengthen calm time). From Dog position, move right and left foot to front of mat. Come to standing position.
- Forward Bend – Place feet hip-width apart and point them straight ahead. Bend at the hips and hang arms, head, and spine toward the floor (like a rag doll). Touch the floor with your fingers. If your fingers don’t reach, bend your knees. Imagine your back, head, and arms flowing down like a waterfall. Breathe into your back. Bend knees, place hands on hips, look up, and stand.
- Chair – Stand with legs hip-width apart as in Mountain. Inhale and raise and straighten arms overhead, keeping arms parallel with palms facing each other, as in Upward Mountain. Exhale, bend knees, and take thighs back as if sitting in an imaginary chair. Keep knees in alignment with feet (not knock-kneed or bowlegged). Point feet straight ahead and press down the four corners of each foot. Lift the belly, head, and heart. Be very still. Feel your stillness and strength!! Go into Upward Mountain by breathing in, pressing down through the feet, and reaching up to the sky while gradually lengthening your legs.) Palms face each other and fingers extend up. Press feet down and lift belly, head, and heart; shoulders back and down. Looks like a touchdown! Imagine sending laser beams out through your fingertips.
- Mountain – Stand with feet hip-width apart, pointing straight ahead, and press them down into the earth. Stretch your arms straight alongside your body, with energy reaching out of your fingertips. Lift belly, head, and heart. Shoulders are back and down. Look straight ahead. Body is activated (firmed toward the centerline)
- Tree – Stand with legs and feet together. Spread your toes and press out evenly through the four corners of each foot. Shift your weight onto the left foot. Slowly bend right knee and draw the right foot up, placing the bottom of your foot as high as possible on your inner leg (ankle, shin, or thigh) comfortably. Activate your body and press standing leg down, rooting like a tree to the earth. Press palms together in front of heart to help with balance. Practice stillness and breath holding pose for 15 seconds. Repeat on other leg.
- Twist – Lie on back. Pull knees up toward the chest, then over to the right and all the way to the floor. Stretch arms out to the sides and look to the left. Stretch your breath out to your fingertips. Bring knees back to center. Repeat on left side. Stand and partner up with same partner for back drawing.
- Back Drawing – One person places hands on the back of their partner. Begin by making rain on the person’s back-gently tapping the back. Now, make it rain all the way down the back-fingers sliding gently down the back. Then, make light thunder-gently tapping the back. Then lightning-draw lightening strikes. Now draw big, puffy rain clouds. Brush those clouds away-gently sweeping hands across the back. Now the sun comes out-draw a big sun with a happy face and sunglasses! Place palms on your partner’s back. Close eyes and feel the warm hands of the person behind you. Imagine yourself in a beautiful place with the sun warming your back.
- Relaxation – Quiet your body while lying on your back for a Guided Journey: The Boat Ride, p. 136.