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Meditation Articles for Teens
Meditation Articles for Adults

 

Meditations and Prayers
for Kids,
Teens, Adults
by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Description: http://www.susankramer.com/meditation292e.jpg

Kids
Articles for adults to use to teach kids a variety of meditations and prayers

 

1. Teaching Preschoolers Sitting Meditation
2. Teaching School Age Kids Sitting Meditation
3. Teaching Kids Relaxation Meditation
4. Walking Meditation for Kids
5. Instant Meditation for Kids
6. Teaching Music Meditation to Kids
7. Benefits of Meditation for Kids
8. Spiritual Living and Meditation for Kids
9. Meditation for all Kids Book or Ebook
10. Guided Meditation on Friendliness for Kids
11. Little Johnny Story as Verse and Prayer
12. Children's Prayers of Appreciation
13. Beginning Sitting Meditation for Kids
14. Guided Relaxation Meditation for Kids and Teens
15. Bedtime Prayers for Kids
16. Christmas Prayer for Children
17. How to Teach Kids Sitting Meditation
18. Walking Meditation for Problem Solving for Kids
19. Meditative Movement for Kids of all Ages
20. Intermediate Sitting Meditation for Kids
21. How to Teach Kids Walking Meditation
22. Children's Prayers as Stories: Walking Along

23. Meditation Stories with Twins Anneke and Hans Ebook
24. 15 Ways Meditation Benefits Kids
25. Yoga for all Kids Ebook
26. Sharing Meditation for Kids
27. Anneke and Hans Learn About Thankfulness
28. Guided Meditation for Kids About Being Honest
29. Walking Meditation for Kids Emphasizing Kindness
30. Swimming Meditation for Kids
31. Spiritual Living and Meditation for Kids
32. Guided Meditation for Kids on Friendliness
33. Anneke and Hans Celebrate Christmas
34. Group Meditation for Kids
35. Guided Meditation for Kids on Compassion
36. How to Teach Kids Music Meditation
37. Running Meditation for Kids
38. Little Johnny Meditating by the River
39. Biking Meditation for Kids
40. Swinging Meditation for Kids
41. Meditation for Kids About Being Kind
42. Meditation on Giving Kids Guidance

 



1. Teaching Preschoolers Sitting Meditation

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Young kids love being outdoors and pretending, so images from nature for teaching beginning meditation fit this age group. In this lesson I've included the example of a puppy for the kids to visualize.

Breathing lesson

To introduce children to sitting meditation you are going to be the model to emulate: Everyone sits in a circle with you on a carpet or blanket, facing in to the center, with legs crossed in, and hands clasped resting in their lap. No need to stress sitting up perfectly straight or not fidgeting. The perfection of the pose comes with lots of practice and their maturing body.

Next, ask the children to copy your special breathing. First explain what you are going to do such as: "We are going to breathe in and out evenly like a little puppy does while taking a nap. On the first count we breathe in (model the "in" breath), and on the second count we breathe out (model the "out" breath). Let's all try the even breathing now (let everyone try 3 sets of evenly spaced in and out breathing)."

If you are working with preschoolers explain that even breathing, like a little puppy resting, also gives them a rest and time to feel better when they have been upset or crying.

Imagery for quiet time

Now, moving on to the sitting still portion of the meditation practice, ask the kids to close their eyes and imagine a special little talking dog out in the yard who is going to tell a story about the world.

The talking dog says that he represents all the animals of the planet, and wishes all people to live in harmony with each other, the animals, and the environment, because we all depend on nature for air to breathe, clean water and food. The little talking dog now sits still, and asks the kids to join him for a few minutes thinking about how they can be kind and caring with each other, animals and everything on our planet.

By now, the children are probably quiet and relaxed. When the group begins to stir ask everyone to follow you by taking a deep breath in, letting it out, standing up and stretching.

Though this meditation example uses images from nature, if you are teaching in a particular religious setting you could use those examples. Either way, spiritual energy flows through everyone and the quiet time of meditation helps get in touch with our deeper inner peace and calm; our spiritual nature.



2. Teaching School Age Kids Sitting Meditation

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

This age group is used to sitting still at their desks for a determined period of time, which is a head start in teaching sitting meditation. For learning meditation the teacher and students sit in a circle on the carpet facing in, or the students can sit at their desks with their hands clasped in their laps. Encourage students to sit upright rather than slouch to keep their attention on the lesson.

Breathing practice

If your students are at least school age explain that even breathing calms them down when they are stressed or angry. And, that it is a good practice to use that no one else will even know they are doing: it is like their own first aid kit for regaining calm and control of themselves.

Demonstrate the meditation practice of evenly spaced regular breathing. Have them first count from one to four. Then demonstrate that on count 1 they breathe in, and on count 2 they release the breath; then breathe in on count 3, and breathe out on count 4. And, that this even pattern at their own regular breathing rate continues through the meditation.

Imagery and quiet time

Now, moving on to the sitting still portion of the meditation practice, ask the kids to close their eyes, and sitting very still imagine the sun rising in the sky. It is brightening all the world so plants and trees can grow, and people can see where to go.

By now, the children are probably quiet and relaxed. When the group begins to stir, (no time limit), ask everyone to follow you by taking a deep breath in, letting it out, standing up and stretching.

Remind the kids they can do this meditation anytime they need to calm down, or need some quiet time to work out problems they may be having at home, school or with others.

In this meditation I have not mentioned any particular religious imagery, which you can add in if you are teaching from a particular religious perspective. Rather, this meditation can be called quiet time and used in the schools for stress reduction or to recover order in the classroom.

Quiet time with even breathing
Helps to banish stress from living.



3. Teaching Kids Relaxation Meditation

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Everyone needs relaxation periods to refresh and rejuvenate; kids, too. Did you ever notice how easily a baby can relax into sleep? They naturally know how to and take it when needed.

Here is how to teach kids relaxation meditation when they feel stressed and need a break, or they need uninterrupted quiet time to work out solutions to problems.

You are going to be the director for this lesson rather than a participant as with teaching sitting and walking meditation. After all, you would not be able to see how your kids are doing if you were lying down with the group.

Provide a quiet area that is carpeted, or has a thin mat or thick blanket on the floor or grass for each child. Preferably kids should remove their shoes.

You and the children begin by sitting cross-legged in a circle facing in. This is time to give the kids the philosophy about relaxation meditation.

Philosophy by age group

If your group is school age you could say something like: "Relaxation meditation is a time to rest your body and mind. When your body is fully resting and you are breathing evenly and regularly it is easier for you to work out solutions to problems you may be having a home, school, or with friends."

If your group is preschoolers you can say something like: "You are pretending to rest with a starfish laying on a rock at the sea, feeling so calm and warm. Taking time to lie all stretched out on your back is a way to feel good if you are upset, and need quiet time to think of ways to be happy again with your friends and family."

Begin the relaxation meditation

Ask kids to lie back with everyone pointing their toes into the center of the circle, with enough space between them so they are not touching each other. Instruct the kids to close their eyes and let their legs rest about a foot apart and their arms rest down alongside their bodies, but not quite touching their sides.

Ask your group to pretend they are lying in warm sand and feeling very comfortable.

Clench and relax muscles

Have the kids clench up then relax their muscles in this order: toes, legs, tummy, arms, and to squeeze their face into the expression of "something icky" and then relax it once again. And then roll their head to the right, left and back to center, and now stay still and relaxed.

Breathing

Go on to the breathing directions: Ask the kids to breathe in and out evenly in a pattern like breathe in one count, and breathe out one count, and breathe in one count and continue. If your group is too young to count, demonstrate the even breathing and ask them to do it the same as you. Continue the even breathing for 15 seconds to a minute for an older group of kids.

Relaxation

Then ask the kids to just remain lying so still and resting like that starfish on the rock in the warm sun, and to use this quiet time to think about a kind way to act toward someone after the relaxation meditation.

To end the session, ask the children to open their eyes, stretch out, sit up, stand up, and go on with their day and the plan each thought about for being kind to someone.



4. Walking Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Walking with a child or group of children is a perfect time to teach them about walking meditation.

Begin by picking a path or trail your group already knows so the concentration need not be on finding your way. Begin by walking in single file or with kids alongside you, but do not take the lead at the head of the line or pack, because you may be setting a pace too fast for them to comfortably maintain.

Before you set out check to see that no one is thirsty or hungry as these can be distractions to the lesson. If everyone carries a small water bottle, piece of fruit or nuts and a pack of tissues all needs should be met for half an hour, at least.

Don't forget the sunscreen, maybe hats with brims and dress appropriately. All the comfort features taken care of leave time to clear the mind for thoughts on the day's meditation.

Now, set out on your trail, walking at a slow pace for half a minute to warm up the muscles. Tell your group that today you are learning a walking meditation.

Breathing and walking pattern

The first part of the walk is learning to coordinate breathing with the walking rhythm. Here's how to explain:

"Take 2 walking steps for every breath in. And, take 2 walking steps for every breath out."

"In addition, let arms swing at sides in the pattern called opposition. This means as the right foot steps forward, the left arm swings forward. And, as the left foot steps forward, the right arm swings forward."

Tell the students about the first 2 parts of the meditation: 1. Taking 2 steps for each breath in or out; 2. Swinging arms in opposition to legs.

Practice this pattern of regulated breathing with arms swinging in opposition for 5 minutes or more while the group remains silent and concentrates on making the pattern second nature.

Thoughts on kindness

The next part of the walking meditation follows without a break in the rhythmic walking pattern, and that is to keep up the pace and turn thoughts to how to show more care with family and friends at home and school. Ask the kids to think and plan one way they can do a helpful task after the meditation.

Ask the kids to use the rest of the walk for quiet time while keeping up the pace they've just established.

If you are walking with school age kids tell the benefits of coordinating walking and breathing. Explain that breath is a link between the body and mind, and when upset or stressed just doing the regular breathing and walking combination will calm the mind enough for a solution to more easily come to mind.

When walking with preschoolers gear the walking meditation to learning how to swing arms forward and back in opposition to the walking pattern. Ask the kids to think of ways to share nicely with other children. Leave out the directions for regular breathing. Explain that walking is a time to quietly think about what may be bothering them and ways to later get along with friends and family.

Finish the walking meditation by sitting down in a circle and giving each person a turn to share a way they thought of to be kind to someone.



5. Instant Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

There are times when stress suddenly creeps up and you just want relief right now! This is the time to use an "instant meditation" to help yourself.

Instant meditation is a breathing practice that calms your mind and relaxes your body, so you can go on with what you need to do in a positive and self-confident way.

There may be times all through your life when "instant meditation" will come in handy, so it is worthwhile learning and practicing this easy technique.

I used it when I was a youngster and would be in a school dance performance. It helped me just before I would go onstage. And when I was older and became a ballet dancer I still used this "instant meditation."

Here's how to use an instant meditation

Wherever you are and whatever you are doing this is a silent technique that no one else will even know you are doing. That's one of the beauties of it.

To begin at a moment's notice, take even and regular breaths, with all your attention on your breathing. This takes your mind off whatever is causing stress in the moment. You are giving yourself a mini vacation!

Here's an example of the rhythm of even and regular breathing:
Breathe in count 1;
Breathe out count 2;
Breathe in count 1;
Breathe out count 2; and continue this pattern.

You do not need to say the counts, just think them while you take the even breaths. After a minute you will probably be calm and feel okay to continue with what you need to do. If you need to continue for 5 or 10 minutes that is okay, as you are breathing at your own normal rate and not doing anything to hurt your body.

Use this silent "instant meditation" as often as you need to at school, at home, while playing, at the store or wherever you are. Remember that no one will even know you are doing the even breathing practice, but you will get the benefits!

Our breathing gets faster when we are upset or distressed. By choosing to breathe in an even pattern, like the example above, we regain peace and control once again. And when we feel peaceful and in control of our lives we are most productive and do our best work.

Remember to breathe evenly, when stressed,
It helps us do our best!



6. Teaching Music Meditation to Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Music meditation for kids is a deep relaxation time. It is a chance to let go of accumulated stress while listening to soothing and beautiful music.

Listening to uplifting music at anytime can be a great help in keeping a positive mood; it gives a boost of energy.

Rhythms and vibrations are such a part of our daily lives and the makeup of the entire universe, that it is not surprising that music can affect our moods and attitudes.

How to teach and practice music meditation

If a group of kids are going to practice a music meditation, such as for a rest period in the classroom, ideally everyone should lie on their back on the carpet in a circle with feet facing into the center.

Kids should close their eyes, let their arms rest alongside and a bit away from their body, and let their legs be stretched out with feet about a foot a part or comfortably a part.

The teacher can now turn on the selection for music meditation. It should be soothing and uplifting. I like to use pieces by Beethoven, Chopin, Mozart, Bach. I think you get the idea. Music without words is better for relaxation and stress relief as it is not adding others' ideas to the mind.

Ask the kids to breathe evenly and regularly. An example is to breathe in for 1 count and breathe out for 1 count; breathe in for 1 count and breathe out for 1 count. And, continue the pattern without actually voicing the counts. They should keep up the even breathing while doing the meditation.

Now that the kids are relaxed and breathing evenly and easily, ask them to feel the music inspiring them to think of an appreciation for one special person or pet in their lives. After a minute ask them to hold onto their positive thoughts while listening to the music for 5 or more minutes. (If this is the first session even 1 minute is enough.)

Now ask the kids to think over any problems that they may have, and let any positive ways to work them out come to mind.

To finish the music meditation, ask the kids to take a deep breath in, then slowly breathe out, stretch, get up and go on to the next activity.

Kids can also practice music meditation on their own at their desk or a music center by wearing earphones, laying their heads on their desk for a few minutes, and listening to uplifting music to break the pattern of stress.



7. Benefits of Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Here are some ways kids can benefit from learning meditation techniques:

1. Learning even, regular breathing gives instant stress relief on a moment's notice. The regular even breathing is a bridge that ties body to mind; when breathing is made regular it calms the physical body.

2. Following the sequence within a meditation develops memory and the ability to concentrate, which carries over into school work.

3. Longer meditations give the body and mind time to deeply relax and center.

4. I found in teaching, that active or hyperactive kids moving in rhythm with the group, such as in walking meditation, derive a calming effect.

5. Meditation is non-competitive, and each can participate within the limits of their own ability, with adaptations if needed, or by working with a partner.

6. Meditation can be done individually or in a group setting and it does not need a special place to practice.

7. Beginning meditation practice in childhood sets up a lifetime habit for a way to handle stress, and as the child matures spiritual qualities can be added to meditate upon, such as kindness, loving, honesty, compassion.

8. Developing the discipline to sit still for meditation carries over into learning how to sit and concentrate to work out a problem or do school work.

9. Meditation practice develops strength of character, as the child learns about virtuous living by thinking over the qualities of each virtue.

10. Meditation can help a child learn to think for themselves, and determine a best course of action by reflecting on possible solutions.

11. If the child is being raised in a particular religion, the quiet time of meditation is a chance to reflect on the spiritual lesson for the day.

12. Meditation is a positive activity that can be an example to a child's friends of a way to handle stress and work out problems.

13. Meditation feels good because a calm mind and relaxed body generate feelings of harmony.

14. As kids grow up and meditation deepens feelings of joy awaken within, and can be shared in daily living through caring actions, making meditation a win-win activity.



8. Spiritual Living and Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Even from a very young age kids learn about their innate spirituality underlying all religious practices from the examples around them; with family, friends, in community gatherings, in worship services.

Prayer, meditation, and study of virtues are useful in finding peace and abiding love within, forming a foundation for becoming caring, useful adults.

Giving thanks in prayer and meditation becomes a lifelong habit when begun early. Giving thanks can be in the form of prayers from religion, uplifting verses, or spontaneously formed in the moment.

A good reason for prayer and meditation is to generate feelings of appreciation.

When we feel appreciative we are feeling happy and peaceful in that moment. In times of stress, taking time to remember one thing we do have, with appreciation, helps us see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Daily life has moments of ups and downs; the downs more easily transformed by the sweetness of an appreciation or uplifting verse or thankful thought.

Relaxation meditation

Take time for a restful timeout in meditation whenever you need it.
When you are swamped with work, or when you've had a disagreement with a buddy, take time to find the place of rest within yourself, as you deeply relax your body.

To begin, lie on your back on your bed or carpet, and completely tense and relax each part of your body, from your toes and feet, to your neck and shoulders. 

Then try some even breathing: breathe in count 1; breathe out count 2; breathe in count 1; breathe out count 2; and continue on with the even breaths while resting.

Close your eyes and be very still for a few minutes. Stay awake, don't go to sleep. When you get up and become active again, some new ideas may come to solve problems. This is true at any age.

Meditation, quiet time, with a relaxed body and beautiful thoughts is a natural way to make space for problem solving and moving in the right direction. So, while you are lying there so still and relaxed think of at least one good act you can do for your family or friends. Just the thought of being kind is enough to lift you into a positive mood.

Make time for meditation while growing up. It is a habit you can practice your whole life to restore calm, peace and joy whenever you need it.



9. Meditation for all Kids Book and Ebook Summary

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

How to teach through description and illustration: sitting, walking, dance, relaxation, instant, music, running, swinging, biking and swimming meditations, plus a chapter of guided meditations on virtues, and a chapter of affirmations, inspirations and prayers. For tots to teens of all abilities. Useful resource for parents, educators, and interfaith clergy. 100 pages.

Included in text

Chapter I.
About Meditation for all Kids
Meditation and Spiritual Living
Meditation and Meditative Movement
Benefits of Meditation
Chapter II.
How to Teach Kids Meditation
How to Teach Sitting Meditation
How to Teach Walking Meditation
How to Teach Relaxation Meditation
How to Teach Music Meditation
Chapter III.
Basic Meditations for Kids

Sitting Meditation
Walking Meditation
Relaxation Meditation
Instant Meditation
Running Meditation
Swinging Meditation
Biking Meditation
Swimming Meditation
Chapter IV. Guided Meditations on Virtues
Guided Meditation on Friendliness
Guided Meditation on Being Compassionate
Guided Meditation on Being Honest
Guided Meditation about Being Kind
Guided Meditation about Sharing
Chapter V. Group Circle Meditation
Part I. Opening Verse
Part II. Short Meditation
Part III. Song
Chapter VI.
Dance Meditation
Preparation
Part I. Stretching
Part II.
Dancing and Elements of Movement
Part III.
Quiet Time Meditation
Chapter VII.
Affirmations, Inspirations, Prayers
Introduction
Affirmations
Inspirations
Special and Holiday Prayers

100 pages.


About the author: Susan Kramer has been teaching dance, yoga and meditation to kids of all ages and abilities for more than 30 years.

Available as a paperback or download



10. Guided Meditation on Friendliness for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

To have a friend, first be a friend. This motto will take you happily through life with plenty of people you will call friends.

Friendship is a circle of sharing, but it has to start with someone. And when it starts with you, you will be the one with plenty of friends. On the other hand, if you stay away from people or don't go out of your way to develop friendships you won't have many.

And what is the point of making and nurturing friends? It is a happy way to live.

Guided meditation to develop friendliness

Sit up straight in your favorite meditation spot and if you like, keep a journal and pen at your side to jot down new ideas after your meditation.

Begin with a minute of even and natural breathing like this: breathe in 1 count, and breathe out 1 count, and repeat this even pattern while sitting still and thinking. You don't need to say the numbers, just keep up the even rhythm of breathing.

Close your eyes and fold your hands in your lap. If you are sitting on a cushion on the floor, fold in your legs and place your folded hands in your lap. If you are sitting in a chair, place the soles of your feet on the floor and place your hands in your lap.

Now, imagine you are walking across the playground at school and it is full of kids enjoying recess. Some kids are gathered in groups talking, and others are playing dodge ball.

You notice what they all have in common is that they are communicating with others and look and sound happy.

Over on the bench you see a new kid by himself who is longingly watching others play together. Now, see your self go over to the new boy and introduce your self. Ask him some things about himself like his name and where he used to live. That is a way to start up a conversation.

And while you are being friendly, notice that you feel good. You notice, too, that you have more energy suddenly. That is what being friendly does, it gives us a nice boost of good energy.

Now finish your meditation by opening your eyes, stretching out and resolving that the next time you are on the playground you will search out someone who is alone and brighten up their day and yours, too, by beginning a conversation.

To finish your meditation, take in a deep breath and slowly release it. Stretch out and go on with your day. If some ideas on developing friendship came to you, write them down in your journal for later review.



11. Little Johnny Story as Verse and Prayer

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

This is a little story that incorporates prayer for children of all ages. The setting is an ordinary farm with a stand of pine and a creek running through it, and it takes place on a warm and dusty summer day.

I find that it is much easier to learn about prayer, appreciation and thankfulness by remembering a little story modeling these qualities.

Little Johnny, 9 Years Old
Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: photo credit Susan Kramer
Little Johnny, 9 years old
Running all around
Across the barnyard, along the creek
He never can be found
Where can he be found?

Out behind the hay barn
Johnny stops his play
To help a farmer pitch his crop
Then Johnny's on his way
Moving on this summer day.

Darting through the pine woods
Racing down the road
Little Johnny rarely stops
But visits his friend, a speckled toad
A springing, croaking speckled toad.

Supper bell a-ringing
Sounding far away
Johnny trudges home at last
Winding down his busy day
Winding down from all his play.

Little Johnny snug in bed
Tuckered out from chores and playing
Takes some time to thank the Lord
Soon sleeping after praying
Sweet dreaming after praying.

***
As a follow through activity after reading this little story with your children, have them draw pictures of Johnny from each paragraph and collate the pages into a little prayer book for them.
 



12. Children's Prayers of Appreciation

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Giving thanks becomes a life-long habit when begun early. Giving thanks can be in the form of prayers from religion, uplifting verse or spontaneously formed in the moment.
Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: photo credit Susan Kramer
A good reason for praying is to generate feelings of appreciation.

When we feel appreciative we are feeling happy and peaceful in that moment. In times of stress, taking time to remember one thing we do have, with appreciation, helps us see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Daily life has moments of ups and downs; the downs more easily transformed from lemons to lemonade with the sweetness of an appreciation, uplifting verse, or thankful thought.

Small prayers of appreciation

"I appreciate having time to love."

"I appreciate having this day to grow."

"I appreciate my family (and friends, teachers, pets, etc.)."

"I appreciate my life."

Uplifting thoughts as prayers for a better world

Appreciation Feeling thankful; saying thank you.

Blame Blame delays constructive action.
Caring When we help out, we feel useful, we feel good.
Clarity As we think clearly, the clearer our thinking becomes.
Compassion Listening carefully then acting in a way that is helpful.
Devotion Doing what we say we will do, with a good attitude.
Duty Doing what is required.
Faith Knowing that right effort brings good results.
Friendship To have a friend, be friendly.
Intuition Inside information brought out.
Kindness Acting kind, we feel fine.
Love Felt by loving.
Loyalty Keeping a commitment when circumstances change.
World Peace Personal peace multiplied.

A final thought: Life becomes a prayer through caring actions.

Article and photo credit Susan Helene Kramer



13. Beginning Sitting Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Hi kids! When you are feeling stressed about school, or anything, take a short timeout for meditation.

Meditation is a time for quiet thoughts, and can be done sitting, walking, or lying down.

Meditation gives you a chance to think about how to get your projects done the best way you can. And, it is a way to spend some time thinking about ways to solve problems.

If you are having trouble getting along with someone, meditation is a time to think about a way to get along again.

Here's one way to meditate:

A Sitting Meditation

Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Child MeditatingTime: 2 to 10 minutes.

Sit up straight, cross-legged if on the grass, or if you are indoors sit on a pillow on the floor, or on your bed, or in a chair. If you sit in a chair your feet can be on the floor in front of you. Hold your hands in your lap and close your eyes.

Begin to breathe easily and evenly, in and out. Silently count each breath in as one count, and each breath out as one count, till 20 counts, or another even number.

Example: Count 1 breathe in; count 2 breathe out; count 3 breathe in; count 4 breathe out.

Finish counting to 20 and continue to breathe evenly.

Next, think with appreciation about the people in your life, such as your family, friends, and teachers. Thinking good thoughts feels good and rests you mind and body. It gives you more energy.

Feeling more rested after spending time in appreciation is a good time to work out, in your mind, any problems with family, friends, or school.

After meditation write your new ideas. A notebook or journal just for your thoughts is handy.

To finish the meditation, take a deep breath in, and out. Stand up and stretch.

After Quiet Time
I'm Feeling Fine.

Article and illustration by Susan Helene Kramer



14. Guided Relaxation Meditation for Kids and Teens

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Pick a warm spot where you will not be disturbed. Lie on your back on a bed, carpet, blanket on the lawn, or a warm sandy beach.
Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Meadow next to the North Sea, The Netherlands; photo credit Stan Schaap
Rest your arms near your sides; legs relaxed and slightly apart. Close your eyes. You may want to cover yourself with a light blanket incase you cool down while relaxing.

Imagine sinking lower and lower into the surface. Enjoy the relaxed feeling in your body that is lying so quietly; begin to feel comfortable all over.

Breathe in and out easily and evenly.

Example:
breathe in 1 count;
breathe out 1 count;
breathe in 1 count;
continue ...

While lying so still begin to listen to the sound of your breathing. This calms and rests your body and mind.

When your body is relaxed and your mind calm it is easier to work out any problems you may be having at home, school, or with friends.

After some time, begin to come back to your everyday self by taking a deep breath, opening your eyes, stretching out your arms and legs.

Keep this relaxation meditation as a handy tool for whenever you have a few minutes to yourself and need a break, or just some rest.

Practiced at bedtime, relaxation meditation closes the day in a positive way.

Article by Susan Helene Kramer
Photo credit Stan Schaap; meadow next to the North Sea, The Netherlands



15. Bedtime Prayers for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Little prayers to meditate upon before sleep

"Before I close my eyes tonight
I thank you Lord with all my might
For my friends and neighbors, too
For everyone that's in my school
And keep my family in your heart
And may I remember
We're never apart."

***

"For peace on earth
Dear Lord I pray
May all earth's children
Live free one day."

***

"As I slumber in my bed
Keep my angels overhead
And with the dawning of the day
Angels can then
Watch me play."

***

"Dear guardian angel
Be with me here
Keep careful watch
Till morning is near."

***

"Lord, keep me safe
While dark is the night
And may I awaken
To bright morning light."

***

As a follow up activity after reading these bedtime prayers with your children, have them draw pictures to illustrate each, and collate the pages into a little prayer book for them.

Article by Susan Helene Kramer; photo credit Stan Schaap



16. Christmas Prayer for Children

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Holly trees with berries red
Children early tucked in bed
Thoughts alive with holiday cheer
For Christmas morning's almost here …

It was so long ago a babe
Changed our lives with what he gave
He shared his love with everyone
This precious gift of God's own Son.

And so on Christmas day we take
The time to give and share and make
A special place inside our hearts
Where love will live and not depart.

Let's celebrate our joy and peace
Share our love with all we meet
Remembering that the newborn babe
Lives safely in our hearts this way
Lives safely in our hearts today!

Prayer and photo credit Susan Helene Kramer



17. How to Teach Kids Sitting Meditation

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Kids love nature and what better images to use for meditation than little animals. Many of us through life have come to enjoy the animated stories on the Technicolor screen, and the many books of animals talking and working out lessons for the common good.

Sitting meditation practice

Regulated breathing
To introduce children to sitting meditation you are going to be the model to emulate.

Everyone sit in a circle with you on a carpet or blanket, facing in to the center, with legs crossed in; hands clasped resting in their lap.

Next, ask the children to copy your special breathing. First explain what you are going to do such as: "We are going to breathe in and out evenly like a little puppy does while taking a nap. On the first count we breathe in (model the in breath), and on the second count we breathe out (model the out breath). Let's all try the even breathing now (let everyone try 3 sets of evenly spaced in and out breathing)."

Try to gear your explanations of the benefit of even breathing to the age group.

If your children are at least school age explain that even breathing like this calms them down when they are stressed or angry. And, that it is a good practice to use that no one else will even know they are doing - it is like their own first aid kit for regaining calm and control of themselves.

If you are working with preschoolers explain that even breathing, like a little puppy resting, also gives them a rest and time to feel better when they have been upset or crying.

Imagery
Now, moving on to the sitting still portion of the meditation practice, ask the kids to close their eyes and imagine a special little talking dog out in the yard who is going to tell a story about the world.

The talking dog says that he represents all the animals of the planet and wishes all people to live in harmony with each other, the animals, and the environment, because we all depend on nature for air to breathe, clean water and food.

Quiet time
The little talking dog now sits down, curls up, closes his eyes, and asks the kids to join him for a few minutes thinking about how they can be kind and caring with each other, animals and everything on our planet.

By now, the children are probably all quiet and relaxed. When the group begins to stir ask everyone to follow you by taking a deep breath in, letting it out, standing up and stretching.

Remind the kids they can do this meditation anytime they need to calm down, or need some quiet time to work out any problems they may be having at home, school or with others.

Article and photo credit Susan Helene Kramer



18. Walking Meditation for Problem Solving for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

This calming meditation combines even breathing with brisk walking.

To begin:
Pick a path that you know and feel safe walking on for at least 5 minutes.

Walk briskly while swinging your arms easily back and forth, in opposition. (This means that when the left foot steps forward, the right arm swings forward, and when the right foot steps forward the left arm swings forward.)

See the photo of Kathy at right walking with her arms and legs in opposition.

While walking, breathe in and out evenly. One way to do this is to take 2 steps while breathing in, and then 2 steps while breathing out.

By breathing evenly while walking you are practicing concentration, which is a useful skill at school, in sports, at play, or anytime.

And, if you are feeling out of sorts, upset, or angry, take a walk brisk walking sends more oxygen to all the parts of your body, and helps you feel fresh and relaxed again.

To finish your walking meditation, stretch arms overhead, then down to sides, and continue on with your day!

Walking with even breathing
Clears my mind
And now I'm feeling fine.

Article and photo credit Susan Helene Kramer



19. Meditative Movement for Kids of all Ages

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Meditation and meditative movement can be for toddlers, preschoolers, school age kids - everyone!

What is important is that the practices poses, breathing and meditation are adapted to suit the age and abilities of participants. Naturally babies cannot assume a posture or follow directions on how to breathe or put this leg here, and look in that direction there, while breathing in.

Formal instruction can begin only when the participants are able to follow directions and have control of their movements and breathing at the same time. But until that stage of development, or with disabled people, an assistant can gently help the student move into and hold a pose, or sit or recline for meditation.

The benefit of moving meditative poses and meditation is manifold, including: increasing physical flexibility; developing connections between the right and left brain, as the poses are done equally to the right and left; calming the mind through even breathing in the postures and meditation; non-competitive, as it is for personal development not a team sport.

About 1975 I fell into teaching children adaptations of traditional Eastern poses and meditation suited to their abilities quite by chance, as I had been a classical ballet dancer and when no longer performing I began studying the non-competitive poses, breathing practices and meditation. My year studying classical Hindu Bharatanatyam dance was a background that contributed to my skill in Eastern disciplines.

Nowadays it is more common and accepted for both boys and girls to take meditative movement such as Tai chi and yoga as an alternate or additional physical regime to studying dance, learning gymnastics or sports. These disciplines are coming of age for everyone.

My own 5 children are successful adults and products of these early practices. My 30-something son tells me that after work he goes out in the backyard and does 20 minutes of meditation by himself to relax and rejuvenate. And, several times a week he does a long walking meditation with his dog in tow.

This shows me it is really a good idea to give kids the opportunity to learn meditation, controlled breathing, meditative movement and yoga techniques, the earlier, the better. They give a lifetime of methods to maintain or reclaim peace and harmony, body, mind and spirit!



20. Intermediate Sitting Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Once you've learned the basic sitting meditation for kids of sitting still and breathing evenly in and out, it's time to try an intermediate meditation.

To begin:

Sit up straight on a towel or blanket on the grass or beach if outdoors, or on a thick rug if indoors. Cross your legs in and fold your hands in your lap.

Close your eyes and begin breathing like this: on count 1 breathe in; on count 2 breathe out; on count 1 breathe in; on count 2 breathe out and continue this rhythmic pattern during your sitting meditation.

After you are used to the pattern stop saying the numbers, but keep up the rhythm of breathing.

Now, think for some moments with appreciation about at least one good thing in your life. It could be a loving parent or family, a close friend, a helpful teacher, for example.

When we keep an appreciation in mind we look at more stressful situations in a positive way. This helps new fresh ideas for solving problems come up in our mind.

Now include a small verse of gratefulness to end your meditation:

I am grateful for my family and friends,
I am grateful for my school,
Please help me remember
To show I care
When others need me, too.


Finish your meditation by taking a deep breath and slowly letting it out. Open your eyes. Stretch out and go on with your day with a good attitude.

Article and photo credit Susan Helene Kramer



21. How to Teach Kids Walking Meditation

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Walking with a child or group of children is a perfect time to teach them about walking meditation.

Begin by picking a path or trail your group already knows so the concentration need not be on finding your way. You lead the way and this can be in single file or with kids alongside you but do maintain the lead at the head of the line or pack, because you are setting a special pace for the meditation.

Before you set out check to see that no one is thirsty or hungry as these can be distractions to the lesson. If everyone carries a small water bottle, piece of fruit or nuts and a pack of tissues all needs should be met for half an hour, at least.

Don't forget the sunscreen, maybe hats with brims and dress appropriately. All the comfort features taken care of leave time to clear the mind for thoughts on the day's meditation.

Now, set out on your trail, walking at a slow pace for half a minute to warm up the muscles. Now tell your group that today you are learning a walking meditation.

The first part of the walk is learning to coordinate breathing with the walking rhythm. Here's how to explain:

"Take 2 walking steps for every breath in. And, take 2 walking steps for every breath out."

"In addition, let arms swing at sides in the pattern called opposition. This means as the right foot steps forward, the left arm swings forward. And, as the left foot steps forward, the right arm swings forward."

Tell the children you are now doing the first 2 parts of walking meditation:
1. Taking 2 steps for each breath in or out; 2. Swinging arms in opposition to legs.

Practice this pattern of regulated breathing with arms swinging in opposition for 5 minutes or more while the group remains silent and concentrates on making the pattern second nature.

The next part of the walking meditation follows without a break in the rhythmic walking pattern, and that is to keep up the pace and turn thoughts to how to show more care with family and friends at home and school. Ask the kids to think and plan one way they can do a helpful task after the meditation.

Ask the kids to use the rest of the walk for quiet time while keeping up the pace they've just established.

If you are walking with school age kids tell the benefits of coordinating walking and breathing. Explain that breath is a link between the body and mind, and when upset or stressed just doing the regular breathing and walking combination will calm the mind enough for a solution to come to mind.

Walking with preschoolers gear the walking meditation to learning how to swing arms forward and back in opposition to the walking pattern. Ask the kids to think of ways to share nicely with other children. Leave out the directions for regular breathing. Explain that walking is a time to quietly think about what may be bothering them and ways to later get along with friends and family.

Finish the walking meditation by sitting down in a circle and giving each person a turn to share a way they thought of to do a kindness.

Article and photo credit Susan Helene Kramer
 



22. Children's Prayers as Stories: Walking Along

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

This is a little story that incorporates prayer and is for children of all ages. The setting is a village road that has a bridge over a creek. Perhaps it takes place on an ordinary summer day.

I find that it is much easier to learn about prayer, kindness and thoughtfulness by remembering a little story modeling these qualities.

Walking Along

Walking along
Feeling fine
Meeting with friends
Spending some time.


Crossing a bridge
Watching the ducks
Tossing in bread
They are catching with luck.

Walking along
There's a fallen bird nest
We lift it back up
To an empty branch crest.

Friends heading home
Play's over today
Feeling good, feeling fine
Caring in small ways.

While settling down
Thoughts lift into prayer
Soft blanket of night
Tucks in friends everywhere.

***

As a follow through activity after reading this little story with your children, have them draw pictures of the activity in each paragraph, and collate the pages into a little prayer book for them.

Article and photo credit Susan Helene Kramer



23. Meditation Stories with Twins Anneke and Hans Ebook Summary

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

These eight short meditation stories set near the sea in North Holland show that even without lessons in the classroom we can learn how to function well amongst our fellow humans and the environment. Nature teaches us how to live in harmony when we are quiet and observant.
Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Short Meditation Stories with Twins Anneke and Hans, photo credit Susan Kramer
Hans, Anneke, Max and cousin Johnny are the characters in the meditation stories and teach us while they are learning meditation techniques that come in handy in the moment and in later times; a few virtues make their appearance also.

Look for how to sit, relax, walk and dance in meditation, and how an instant meditation, prayer, reflection and song bring a feeling of happiness and enthusiasm to living.

The stories are illustrated with photos of North Holland.

Most of all enjoy these little stories that are easy to remember and will stick with you like mother's pancakes and syrup on Sunday morning.

Anneke and Hans went to school
But what they learned after
Was more than school rules.
The birds, grass, trees and waters flowing
Held lessons that helped them shine
While growing.


Stories
1.
Sitting Meditation by the Sea
2.
Dance Meditation in the Park
3. Relaxation Meditation in a Meadow
4.
Walking Meditation by a Canal
5.
Instant Meditation and Lesson on Kindness
6.
Thankfulness in Prayer and Meditation
7.
Christmas Joys
8.
Reflecting While Sitting on a Pier

First story: "Sitting Meditation by the Sea"
To begin, it is a Saturday morning and the twins are climbing onto their bikes, to start heading out along the 2 mile herringbone patterned brick bike trail rolling through the dunes leading to the North Sea on the western coast of Holland.

Along the path to their right and left they pass woodlands of oak and open grasslands, interspersed with lower pond areas surrounded by grasses, reeds and cattails. Many birds and ducks make these dune parklands their home year round or temporarily while migrating.

Anneke spots a new family of colorful male mallards with their tan and brown mates, and Hans spies a group of coots with the white foreheads and black bodies of both sexes.

Then the twins see a cormorant flying across in front of them about 20 feet high over the meadow, carrying a long thin branch back to his nest site in the middle of a large pond.

Hans and Anneke do not pause long on the ride today, as they are anxious to reach the open stretch of yellow sandy beach rising gently from the sea in their quest to collect small shells for craft projects.

Nearing their destination they race each other for the final stretch down the slope of the last tall grassy dune, coming to a quick halt as the brick trail breaks off abruptly into soft sand.

Their eyes momentarily adjust to the far horizon of sea, barely discernible from the gray-blue sky above. Eighty miles directly to their west is England.

And, looking in a north-westerly direction, hundreds of miles away just south of the arctic circle is Iceland, the direction from which many winter storms assault Holland after first whipping their winds against the shores of northern and eastern Scotland.

Out of breath, Hans and Anneke lock up their bikes on convenient rail fences at the end of the bike path, and go sit for a few minutes at the foot of a dune facing the sea.

Since they are quiet and unmoving, a seagull comes quite near them at the water's edge. Two foot waves wash in and flow back by gravity and still their seagull friend, 'Sammy Seagull' as they call him, stands rooted on the wash of beach.

The twins take this time to sit up straight pretending to be seagulls, and as the waves wash in and out in a regular pattern, their breath quite naturally takes up a regular even pattern of its own.

After a minute, Anneke and Hans feel rested and run down to water's edge in pursuit of their new seagull friend, but only fast enough to catch a glimpse of his white belly as he swoops out over the edge of sea.

They turn their attention back to collecting the shells they had come for, gathering several handfuls they consider special. Walking back to their bikes, shells stored in backpacks, brother and sister wend their way home.

But, the events of the day with Sammy Seagull at the sea were not forgotten. To this day, when they need a break, the twins spend a few minutes sitting still while breathing in and out in an even pattern, like the waves that repeatedly wash in, and flow back out to the sea.

*********************************************

The author, Susan Helene Kramer, has been teaching people of all ages and abilities meditation, yoga and dance for more than 30 years.

Link to Buy:
Ebook at Lulu.com with PayPal, Visa, MC, Debit Card



24. 15 Ways Meditation Benefits Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Here are 15 ways kids can benefit from learning meditation techniques:

1. Meditation practice develops strength of character, as the child learns about virtuous living by thinking over the qualities of each virtue. 2. Meditation can help a child learn to think for themselves, and determine a best course of action by reflecting on possible solutions. 3. If the child is being raised in a particular religion, the quiet time of meditation is a chance to reflect on the spiritual lesson for the day.

4. Meditation is a positive activity that can be an example to a child's friends of a way to handle stress and work out problems. 5. Meditation feels good because a calm mind and relaxed body generate feelings of harmony. 6. As kids grow up and meditation deepens feelings of joy awaken within, and can be shared in daily living through caring actions, making meditation a win-win activity.

7. Learning even, regular breathing gives instant stress relief on a moment's notice. The regular even breathing is a bridge that ties body to mind; when breathing is made regular it calms the physical body. 8. Following the sequence within a meditation develops memory and the ability to concentrate, which carries over into school work. 9. Longer meditations give the body and mind time to deeply relax and center.

10. I found in teaching, that active or hyperactive kids moving in rhythm with the group, such as in walking meditation, derive a calming effect. 11. Meditation is non-competitive, and each can participate within the limits of their own ability, with adaptations if needed, or by working with a partner. 12. Meditation can be done individually or in a group setting and it does not need a special place to practice.
13. Beginning meditation practice in childhood sets up a lifetime habit for a way to handle stress, and as the child matures spiritual qualities can be added to meditate upon, such as kindness, loving, honesty, compassion. 14. Developing the discipline to sit still for meditation carries over into learning how to sit and concentrate to work out a problem or do school work. 15. Meditation feeds self-esteem: when in control of body and mind the youngster finds confidence to handle any situation competently.



25. Yoga for all Kids Ebook Summary

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

This ebook by Susan Kramer includes 4 styles of meditation for balance, harmony and instant stress relief, plus 15 gentle moving yoga poses that can also be used as a basic motor skills lesson plan, followed by 18 chapters about how to live social skills, and a dictionary of 40 one sentence definitions of happiness. For kids of all ages and abilities! Fully illustrated with photos of poses.

With the stresses in modern society I feel it is important we give kids techniques to help them out at a moment's notice and that is what the meditations teach them.

The text is easy enough for a school age child to read themselves and keep handy in their desk at home or school to refer to.

Traditional yoga poses and breathing techniques have been adapted to help foster motor skill development, coordination, and concentration for students of varying abilities and with special needs.

Each of the poses shows a child doing them so little reading skill is necessary to follow along.

If you already bought an earlier version, this updated ebook is waiting for you in your BellaOnline Membership Area.
Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Yoga for all Kids Ebook by Susan Kramer
Details: 96 pages; ISBN: 978 908 099123 1.

Table of Contents
Introduction
Meditations
1.
Sitting
2.
Relaxation
3.
Walking
4.
Instant Stress Relief
Moving Yoga Poses
Guidelines
Benefits
1. The Leaf
2.
The Flower
3.
The Cricket
4.
The Owl
5.
The Bird
6.
The Squirrel
7.
The Chipmunk
8.
The Rocker
9.
The Seal
10.
The Salutation Pose
11.
The Snake Pose
12.
The Turtle
13.
The Starfish
14.
The Cat Pose
15.
The Swing
How to Live Social Skills
Introduction
1.
Caring
2.
Citizenship
3.
Compassion
4.
Contentment
5.
Courtesy
6.
Forgiveness
7.
Friendship
8.
Helpfulness
9.
Honesty
10.
Kindness
11.
Loyalty
12.
Manners
13.
Respect
14.
Responsibility
15.
Self Sufficiency
16.
Tolerance
17.
Trustworthiness
18.
Truthfulness
Happiness Dictionary
40 One Sentence Definitions of Happiness

About the author Susan Kramer has been teaching meditation and yoga to all ages and abilities since 1965.

Link to Buy
Ebook with credit card or paypal



26. Sharing Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

In today's society the successful family shares responsibilities, with each adult contributing to his family for their sustenance, and also gives through volunteer service to the community for the benefit of those in need.

From earliest times on the planet our ancestors shared with each other for survival. Each person did their part to provide for their family and community.  And still today we live with each other by sharing what we have and earn in so many ways.

Meditation

Start by sitting in your meditation place, and begin doing even and natural breathing like this: breathe in 1 count, breathe out 1 count, and repeat this even pattern while sitting still and thinking. You don't need to say the numbers during the meditation. Close your eyes.

Just keep up the even rhythm of breathing. Regular breathing like this calms your mind and body and allows you to turn your thoughts to the topic of the meditation.

If you are sitting on a cushion on the floor, fold in your legs and place your folded hands in your lap. If you are sitting in a chair, place the soles of your feet on the floor and place your hands in your lap. If you like, keep a notebook and pen at your side to write about any thoughts that come to you about ways to share.

Imagine that you are having a festival at school. All the kids are going to be contributing prizes for the games to be played.

Think about something you have that is in good condition that you can contribute for a prize. It should be something you enjoy so you know for sure that some other kid will be glad to win it.

At the same time, remember that you will have a chance to win a prize too. So in this way, all the kids are sharing what they have with each other.

Think to yourself how it feels to share and win in return. Does it feel good to be in the circle of sharing?

One of the benefits is that you will have something new to you to play with and enjoy that you didn't have before, and so will the child that ends up winning your gift.

To finish your meditation take a deep breath in and let it out, open your eyes and stretch out. Take some time to write your new thoughts on sharing in your notebook.

In summary, all through life each of us has opportunities to share with others and for others to share with us. It is what keeps everyone fed, clothed, in homes and cared for. And, through sharing back and forth, we come to realize that our family and community are part of one big family worldwide family.



27. Anneke and Hans Learn About Thankfulness

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

The setting is a little village nestled against the dunes by the North Sea in Holland. As the story begins …

Anneke and Hans and their parents are off to the school playground this Saturday morning to help set up for the community rummage sale. The annual event gives families a chance to donate what is still usable from their wardrobes, the kids' toy chest, or anywhere at home, and the income raised buys playground equipment.

Pa is going to check in the shed to see if he really needs some tools he has had stored there for a while, and Ma is checking all her kitchen cupboards to find some baking pans she can do without.

The kids hear their parents commenting to each other that they are thankful they have more than they really need and can give to others who will find the items useful. From the smiling expressions on their parents' faces Anneke can see they are really glad to be able to make donations.

Seeing their parents finding items to share the twins climb the stairs to their bedrooms, Anneke on the 2nd floor facing the front garden and street, and Hans in the converted attic room overlooking the back garden golden chain tree.

First they each check their wardrobes for clothes that are too small. Anneke finds a jumper and blouse that were from 2 years ago that she has definitely outgrown, and lays them on her bed. Then lined up on the floor of the cupboard are several pairs of shoes that she has just outgrown. So she wraps them in a piece of newspaper and lays them alongside the jumper and blouse. Anneke is feeling thankful that another child will have them now.

Hans is up one floor doing the same as his sister, and has found 2 pairs of pants that are way too small, and carries them down to Anneke's room. The twins scoop up the items and skip down the stairs in tandem, showing their mom what they have to donate.

Ma and Pa wrap everything in plastic bags recycled from shopping trips, and the family climbs on their bikes and heads over to the tables set up for the sale. Many other families are already there setting out their donations to be rummaged through. The prices on everything are kept low so buyers will be able to afford what they truly need.

Anneke and Hans feel thankful, energetic, and positive having items to share with neighborhood boys and girls, and they enthusiastically go off chasing papers on the playground that are escaping up in mini wind funnels.

Ma and Pa notice Anneke and Hans skipping around on the pavers and comment that they are proud of their enthusiasm generated by giving to others. It gives the parents pause to reflect that sharing and being thankful are positive experiences. They are glad the kids are having this opportunity to learn that it feels good to give; to be able to share.

Slowly the morning winds down; the rummage sale's been a success. The family pedals home and gathers around the table for lunch of ham and cheese, sliced tomatoes and cucumbers on buttered buns.

Before eating, they take time to join hands for a few moments of silent meditation, and together say this prayer of thankfulness and appreciation for what they have, and how good it feels to share:

"Our family together, joined hand in hand
Gives thanks for all we have to share
And may we remember this blessing each day
And how important it is to care."


Article by Susan Helene Kramer; the characters in this story are fictional, but the setting is true to life.

For offline reading

Description: http://www.susankramer.com/meditation518.jpgShort Meditation Stories with Twins Anneke and Hans
Enjoy these 8 little meditation stories with Anneke, Hans, and friends learning meditation techniques that will stick with you like mother's pancakes and syrup on Sunday morning. Illustrated with photos of North Holland. 28 pages.



28. Guided Meditation for Kids About Being Honest

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

We learn about being honest through making choices that are true and right, rather than untrue and wrong.

Time and time again throughout life we are all faced with the dilemma of how honest to be in certain situations.

There are times when honesty should be tempered with wisdom, such as when we would be hurting someone by telling the honest truth. An example would be that you see a bully chasing a boy down the street and know which shop the boy ran in to escape. And then the bully asking you if you saw where the boy went.

In order to spare the boy being chased from possible harm, it is better to be less that absolutely honest to spare the boy from the bully.

Honesty tempered with what is for the best outcome of the situation is the right practical solution.

Guided meditation on being honest

Start by sitting up straight in your meditation place, and begin doing even and natural breathing like this - breathe in 1 count and breathe out 1 count, and repeat this even pattern while sitting still and thinking. You don't need to say the numbers, just keep up the even rhythm of breathing.

If you are sitting on a cushion on the floor, fold in your legs and place your folded hands in your lap. If you are sitting in a chair, place the soles of your feet on the floor and place your hands in your lap. If you like, keep a journal and pen at your side to write about any thoughts that come to you about being honest.

Imagine you are in the grocery store with your mom and you see a lady with an open purse ahead of you in the aisle. Suddenly she reaches up high to take down a box of cereal from the shelf and because her purse is open her wallet falls out onto the floor and she doesn't notice, but instead keeps pushing her cart down the aisle.

No one else notices the wallet on the floor.

You must decide whether to be honest and return her wallet, or pick it up and keep it as it may have money inside.

You know that the wallet is not yours, and you really do not feel good at the thought of keeping it for yourself. But you do feel good, in fact, full of energy at the thought of running down the aisle to return the wallet to the owner.

This story shows that acting honestly fills you with good feelings.

To finish your meditation take a deep breath in and out and stretch out your body. If you have some thoughts about honesty take a few moments to write about them in your journal.



29. Walking Meditation for Kids Emphasizing Kindness

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Walking with a child or group of children is a perfect time to teach them about walking meditation.

Begin by picking a path or trail your group already knows so the concentration need not be on finding your way. Begin by walking in single file or with kids alongside you, but do not take the lead at the head of the line or pack, because you may be setting a pace too fast for them to comfortably maintain.

Before you set out check to see that no one is thirsty or hungry as these can be distractions to the lesson. If everyone carries a small water bottle, piece of fruit or nuts and a pack of tissues all needs should be met for half an hour, at least.

Don't forget the sunscreen, maybe hats with brims and dress appropriately. All the comfort features taken care of leave time to clear the mind for thoughts on the day's meditation.

Now, set out on your trail, walking at a slow pace for half a minute to warm up the muscles. Tell your group that today you are learning a walking meditation.

Breathing and walking pattern

The first part of the walk is learning to coordinate breathing with the walking rhythm. Here's how to explain:

"Take 2 walking steps for every breath in. And, take 2 walking steps for every breath out."

"In addition, let arms swing at sides in the pattern called opposition. This means as the right foot steps forward, the left arm swings forward. And, as the left foot steps forward, the right arm swings forward."

Tell the students about the first 2 parts of the meditation: 1. Taking 2 steps for each breath in or out; 2. Swinging arms in opposition to legs.

Practice this pattern of regulated breathing with arms swinging in opposition for 5 minutes or more while the group remains silent and concentrates on making the pattern second nature.

Thoughts on kindness

The next part of the walking meditation follows without a break in the rhythmic walking pattern, and that is to keep up the pace and turn thoughts to how to show more care with family and friends at home and school. Ask the kids to think and plan one way they can do a helpful task after the meditation.

Ask the kids to use the rest of the walk for quiet time while keeping up the pace they've just established.

If you are walking with school age kids tell the benefits of coordinating walking and breathing. Explain that breath is a link between the body and mind, and when upset or stressed just doing the regular breathing and walking combination will calm the mind enough for a solution to more easily come to mind.

When walking with preschoolers gear the walking meditation to learning how to swing arms forward and back in opposition to the walking pattern. Ask the kids to think of ways to share nicely with other children. Leave out the directions for regular breathing. Explain that walking is a time to quietly think about what may be bothering them and ways to later get along with friends and family.

Finish the walking meditation by sitting down in a circle and giving each person a turn to share a way they thought of to be kind to someone.



30. Swimming Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Swimming and rhythmic water activities such as aqua aerobics can be a great time to spend as moving meditations for kids. While getting healthful exercise, they incorporate all the body, and provide a block of time to clear the mind of sticky issues.

Swimming is an individual water activity especially suited to stress relief. It is a time to think about and reflect on problems that may be going on in family, relationships with friends, and school work.

Aqua aerobics may be in a group, but probably follows a routine of repetitive movements, giving time to think and reflect on problems.

How to use swimming for meditation

First, kids need to learn some basic strokes. In practicing the swim coordinated arm and leg movements by holding them in opposition there is the added benefit of developing right - left brain connections, and aiding bodily circulation.

Learning to swim has a lifelong benefit, too. It is a skill we can use at all ages. Even the elderly benefit by movement in water, whether by aqua aerobics, or walking along the floor of the pool, using arms to push the water away - when right leg steps forward, left arm goes forward, and vice versa - another version of the cross-crawling action.

Once the basic strokes are mastered and become automatic movements the technique takes care of itself and the mind in freed up to turn to other issues at hand.

Starting out with slow laps in a pool or while swimming parallel to the water's edge at the beach, give the body a moment to warm up. Take slow strokes and enjoy the feeling of the water moving along the body.

After getting into the regular swimming pattern let the body go along with it's pattern and turn to one issue that needs working on. Think about ways to resolve the problem in a win - win way. That means to find the best resolve, which is where everyone benefits in some way.

I remember as a child the times I would swim back and forth across the cove in front of our house in a relaxed manner, just planning and thinking out situations and about creative projects.

Swimming meditation is also a time to let the creative juices flow - kids have their projects and need time like in swimming to dream, plan and work out the details!



31. Spiritual Living and Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Even from a very young age kids learn about their innate spirituality underlying all religious practices from the examples around them; with family, friends, in community gatherings, in worship services.

Prayer, meditation, and study of virtues are useful in finding peace and abiding love within, forming a foundation for becoming caring, useful adults.

Giving thanks in prayer and meditation becomes a lifelong habit when begun early. Giving thanks can be in the form of prayers from religion, uplifting verses, or spontaneously formed in the moment.

A good reason for prayer and meditation is to generate feelings of appreciation.

When we feel appreciative we are feeling happy and peaceful in that moment. In times of stress, taking time to remember one thing we do have, with appreciation, helps us see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Daily life has moments of ups and downs; the downs more easily transformed from lemons to lemonade with the sweetness of an appreciation or uplifting verse or thankful thought.

Quiet Time Meditation

Take time for a restful timeout in meditation whenever you need it.
When you are swamped with homework, or when you've had an argument, take time to find the place of rest within yourself, as you deeply relax your body.

To begin, lie on your back on your bed or carpet, or in warm sand at the beach, or a lush meadow. Let your body go as limp as a wet spaghetti noodle, while you try some even breathing:

Breathe in count 1; breathe out count 2; breathe in count 1; breathe out count 2; and continue on with the even breaths while resting and being very still.

And perhaps, when you get up and become active again, some new ideas will come to solve problems. This is true at any age.

Meditation, quiet time, with a relaxed body and beautiful thoughts is a natural way to make space for problem solving and moving in the right direction. So, while you are lying there so still and relaxed think of at least one good deed you can do for your family or friends. Just the thought of being kind is enough to lift you into a positive mood.

Make time for meditation while growing up it is a habit you can practice your whole life to restore calm, peace and joy whenever you need it!

Now, follow the links below to learn more about meditation for kids and teens.

Article by Susan Helene Kramer; photo credit Stan Schaap of wild sheep in the Dunes Park by the North Sea, The Netherlands

 



32. Guided Meditation for Kids on Friendliness

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

To have a friend, first be a friend. This motto will take you happily through life with plenty of people you will call friends.

Friendship is a circle of sharing, but it has to start with someone. And when it starts with you, you will be the one with plenty of friends. On the other hand, if you stay away from people or don't go out of your way to develop friendships you won't have many.

And what is the point of making and nurturing friends? It is a happy way to live!

A guided meditation to develop friendliness

Sit up straight in your favorite meditation spot and if you like, keep a journal and pen at your side to jot down new ideas after your meditation.

Begin with a minute of even and natural breathing like this breathe in 1 count and breathe out 1 count and repeat this even pattern while sitting still and thinking. You don't need to say the numbers, just keep up the even rhythm of breathing.

Close your eyes and fold your hands in your lap. If you are sitting on a cushion on the floor, fold in your legs and place your folded hands in your lap. If you are sitting in a chair, place the soles of your feet on the floor and place your hands in your lap.

Now, imagine you are walking across the playground at school and it is full of kids enjoying recess. Some kids are gathered in groups talking, and others are playing dodge ball.

You notice what they all have in common is they are communicating with others and they look and sound happy.

Over on the bench you see a new kid by himself who is longingly watching others play together. Now, see yourself go over to the new boy and introduce yourself. Ask him some things about himself like his name and where he used to live. That is a way to start up a conversation.

And while you are being friendly, notice that you feel good. You notice, too, that you have more energy suddenly. That is what being friendly does gives us a nice boost of good energy.

Now finish your meditation by opening your eyes, stretching out and resolving that the next time you are on the playground you will search out someone who is alone and brighten up their day and yours, too, by beginning a conversation.



33. Anneke and Hans Celebrate Christmas

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

The setting is a little village near the North Sea in Holland. Snow has blown in from the northwest overnight, reflecting brightly in the light this Christmas morning.

Twins, Anneke and Hans are up early and will be heading to a church service with their parents. Fortunately, they'll only have to walk a few blocks as it would be too slippery to ride bikes.

In Holland, Christmas is celebrated over two days, December 25th and 26th. Christmas eve or the morning of the 25th is reserved for church services. Children receive most of their gifts on a separate day just for them - the eve or day of Sinterklaas, December 6th. This frees up the 24th and 25th for family visits with good food and many toasts.

Hans and Anneke are each dressed in snow pants, jacket, cap, scarf and gloves; it takes a while to get ready for the trek. Ma and Pa are wearing their long heavy coats, each with a scarf wrapped several times around their neck; gloves completing their outfits.

Just when they step out the front door they see the surprise Pa has waiting for them: he's brought their sleds from the shed out back to the sidewalk in front, and both children will be getting a ride to church pulled by their parents. This is a real treat as on school days the kids must trudge through the snow in their boots.

Arriving at church, Ma and Pa stack the sleds next to the bike rack and the family enters the community church together to the sound of organ music playing George Frederick Handel's "Joy to the World." "Joy to the world! The Lord is come; Let earth receive her King …."
The twins feel reverent and happy listening to the uplifting and hopeful music. They reflect to each other that they wish every day could feel like Christmas, joyful and full of music. The choir continues with several more Christmas songs and the family joins in on each chorus.

Next, the minister gives a sermon on the meaning of Christmas: that it is meant to be a rebirth of loving kindness in our hearts every day. And that the innocence of the Babe of Bethlehem is a reminder to give purely and unselfishly in order to maintain peace of mind, and help family and neighbors when needed.

Then the congregation fold their hands and bow their heads for a few minutes of silent prayer and meditation, taking time to reflect on the message of caring and love and how it can be put into action. The twins feel peaceful during these moments, and decide that helping out and being kind is really what gives them their best feelings of happiness.

All the way home they think about how much fun it will be helping their parents get ready for their relatives' visit later in the day. Anneke will help set the table and bake cookies with Ma. Hans will help Pa bring in split logs to keep the fire stoked in the wood stove, which is along one wall in the large space that is both living and dining room. The wood stove, the sole source of heat, keeps the house toasty on cold days, as the warm air winds its way up the stairwell to the upper floors.

The day gets very busy, family arrives, everyone eats, their voices getting louder with tall tales and shared remembrances of past times. When they are finally tucked in to their beds, Anneke and Hans each make a promise to themselves to remember that showing kindness and care by helping out when they can gives them the priceless gift of happiness, not just at Christmas time, but every day of the year.

The author, Susan Helene Kramer, has been teaching people of all ages and abilities meditation, yoga and dance for more than 30 years.

For offline reading

Description: http://www.susankramer.com/meditation518.jpgShort Meditation Stories with Twins Anneke and Hans
Enjoy these 8 little meditation stories with Anneke, Hans, and friends learning meditation techniques that will stick with you like mother's pancakes and syrup on Sunday morning. Illustrated with photos of North Holland. 28 pages.



34. Group Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

This is a guided meditation for children led by an older child or adult. It includes 3 parts an opening prayer, short quiet time meditation, and a song.

To begin, leader and children sit up straight next to each other, eyes open, in a circle facing in. Everyone holds hands. The right palm faces up to receive the group energy and the left palm faces down to send it on.

Part 1

A prayer or poem can be read or recited from memory, such as “Golden Light”

“Golden Light, shining bright,
Always teach me what is right.

Teach me to speak with kindness and care.
Teach me to be willing to share.

Teach me to remember, when playing with others,
That all of us are world sisters and brothers.

Golden Light, shining bright,
Keep our world family safe in Your sight.”

Part 2

Leader and children close their eyes for a minute or more of quiet time, thinking about one way to be kind after the meditation.

Part 3

Open eyes and sing an uplifting song such as “Keep Us in Your Sight” to the tune of “The Farmer in the Dell” (The farmer in the dell, the farmer in the dell, hi-ho the derry-o, the farmer in the dell.)

Refrain:
"Lord, keep us in Your sight,
Lord, keep us in Your sight,

1st verse:
In school, while playing and at home,
Lord, keep us in Your sight.

2nd verse:
May we all join hand in hand,
Lord, keep us in Your sight.

3rd verse:
May peace spread over every land,
Lord, keep us in Your sight.

Final verse: (repeat 3rd verse)
Lord, keep us in Your sight,
Lord, keep us in Your sight,
May peace spread over every land,
Lord, keep us in Your sight.”

To finish the group meditation, stand, stretch; enjoy the uplifted energy!



35. Guided Meditation for Kids on Compassion

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Learning how to be compassionate is a great asset in life because you'll feel connected and a part of many peoples' lives while helping out.

Being compassionate is a combination of seeing someone in need and helping make it better.

Some examples are someone gets a physical injury, or is sad and crying and needs comforting, or needs some protection if being bullied.

We all need comforting during hard times so we know how it feels to be comforted and give comfort.

Guided meditation about being compassionate

Begin by sitting up straight in your meditation place.
If you like, keep a journal and pen at your side, so that after your meditation you can write about any thoughts that come to you about being compassionate.

Now, do a minute of even and natural breathing like this breathe in 1 count and breathe out 1 count, and repeat this even pattern while sitting still and thinking. You don't need to say the numbers, just keep up the even rhythm of breathing.

If you are sitting on a cushion on the floor, fold in your legs and place your folded hands in your lap. If you are sitting in a chair, place the soles of your feet on the floor and place your hands in your lap.

Close your eyes and imagine yourself walking to school along the sidewalk. Just ahead you see a girl from your school named Shelley trip on a rock and fall down. You run up to her to see if she needs any help. You notice she scraped her knee and it is bleeding a little.

You take a tissue out of your pocket and offer it to Shelley, so she can hold it on her scrape for a minute to stop any bleeding. You also sit down with her and after a little rest you offer to walk the rest of the way to school with her, and carry her backpack, too.

When you get to school you walk Shelley to the school nurse's office so her scrape can be cleaned. And then you go to your classroom.

Finish your meditation with a deep breath in and out and stretch. Now take some moments to think how you can be compassionate with someone you know who may need some help. The benefit to you is you will feel good being useful for a much longer time than while you are helping out!



36. How to Teach Kids Music Meditation

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Music meditation for kids is a deep relaxation time. It is a chance to let go of accumulated stress while listening to soothing and beautiful music.

Listening to uplifting music at anytime can be a great help in keeping a positive mood. I find it literally gives me added energy.

Rhythms and vibrations are such a part of our daily lives and the makeup of the entire universe, that it is not surprising that music can affect our moods and attitudes.

How to teach and practice music meditation

If a group of kids are going to practice a music meditation, such as for a rest period in the classroom, ideally everyone should lie on their back on the carpet in a circle with feet facing into the center.

Kids should close their eyes, let their arms rest alongside and a bit away from their body, let their legs be stretched out with feet about a foot a part or comfortably a part.

The teacher can now turn on the selection for music meditation. It should be soothing and uplifting. I like to use pieces by Beethoven, Chopin, Mozart, Bach. I think you get the idea. Music without words is better for relaxation and stress relief as it is not adding others' ideas to the mind.

Ask the kids to breathe evenly and regularly. An example is to breathe in for 1 count and breathe out for 1 count; breathe in for 1 count and breathe out for 1 count. And, continue the pattern without actually voicing the counts. They should keep up the even breathing while doing the meditation.

Now that the kids are relaxed and breathing evenly and easily, ask them to feel the music inspiring them to think of an appreciation for one special person or pet in their lives. After a minute ask them to hold onto their positive thoughts while listening to the music for 5 or more minutes. (If this is the first session even 1 minute is enough.)

Now ask the kids to think over any problems that they may have, and let any positive ways to work them out come to mind.

To finish the music meditation, ask the kids to take a deep breath in, then breathe out, stretch out, get up and go on to their next activity.

Kids can also practice music meditation on their own at their desk or a music center by wearing earphones, laying their heads on their desk for a few minutes, and listening to uplifting music this breaks the pattern of stress.



37. Running Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Running meditation for kids should be done at a comfortable pace without any sense of competition. Rather it should be viewed as an individual activity even if a group of kids are running together around the track at school or the park.

The reason for kids to keep at a non-competitive pace is that their bodies are still forming and they don't need the hard impact of fast running that teens and adults can tolerate.

The benefits for kids doing a running meditation are, amongst others:
1. Stress relief.
2. Breathing in more oxygen and exhaling more carbon dioxide.
3. Developing the synapse between the right and left brain from the cross-crawling action. That means when the right foot steps forward the left arm swings forward, and just the opposite of when the left foot steps forward the right arm swings forward.

Another big plus for kids is making running a meditative time to think about any problems they may be having with relationships or school work. Just this little space of time by themselves is like a mini vacation from the regular routine; a time of refreshment.

When the kids get going in their slow running pattern there is time to think the running has become automatic and this frees up the mind to work on planning how to improve a relationship that is causing grief.

To begin - start out walking, swinging arms back and forth as described above. After a minute walking it is time to step up the pace to the slow running. The total time spent running could be anywhere from 5 minutes to 15 minutes or more, depending on the individual's endurance and time constraints.

The arms in running are held a bit differently than in walking. In walking the arms are almost stretched out while swinging back and forth, but in running the arms pump and are held bent at the elbow with the back and forth motion still coming from the shoulders. Walking and running use the same pattern of arm and leg opposition as described in number 3. above.

Running meditation has the benefit that it does not look like something different than the other kids are doing. No one knows the running session is a time for peace and quiet; a space to think over stressful situations in a relaxed way, and let some answers come to mind.

Article and photo of child running by Susan Helene Kramer



38. Meditation Story of Little Johnny Meditating by the River

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Johnny Adams lived in a time and place more pristine. Sunfish burrowed holes in shallows of sheltered river coves; blue crabs clung low underwater to pier pilings, visible occasionally from above to a watchful eye.

Looking back through a window in time we see Johnny out on the pier watching the resident flock of mallards streaming toward him, then veering to the west into the nook of cove carved eons ago by flooding and tides.

Each day toward sunset the flock converged in this seeming ritual of greeting, before hiding for the night amongst the cattails growing along the river's hidden recess.

This was a quiet time of day when minutes seemed longer, and the sinking sun changed from golden to red leaving a deep blue and purple sky behind; lingering on.

It was the time of day Johnny liked to breathe in the respite of cooler air arriving in little gusts from the east.

It was a perfect time to reflect on the landscape of his day; on his trials and how he'd solved them; on how he'd related with family and friends. It was a time to make plans for the next day's adventures.

And, it was the perfect time to sit quietly, undisturbed; his gentle breaths mimicking the even in and out rhythm of the small waves lapping the shore.

Johnny quieted down in body and mind in nature's stillness, and in the falling rays of light restfully welcomed the enveloping night.

***

Meditation story and photo of Magothy River by Susan Helene Kramer
Johnny Adams is a fictional character.



39. Biking Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Biking meditation is an exhilarating practice that wheels away stress and gives a new positive outlook on life.

It can be for all ages and abilities that can ride a tricycle or bike, so even the youngest kids can get the benefit.

Begin by putting on safety equipment and making sure the bike tires are pumped up properly, and the gears, if there are any, are moving smoothly.

If you will be biking an hour or more, clip on a water bottle to keep hydrated. I also like to take juicy fruit on a long ride.

Plan your route with the help of an adult if you need to read a map. I recommend biking in pairs for safety's sake. If someone falls, the other can go for help. Always let an adult or someone in charge know where you are going.

Some ideas for biking routes are around your housing block, to your school and back, on the school playground if they have a track laid out for this.

We have an elementary school across the street from us and while not with a large playground, they have recently painted lines on the asphalt around the outer edge, to form a track for kids to bike in circles. The track is 6 feet wide all around so more than one child can ride at a time.

This is a great time for parent and child bonding, also not just for the kids to enjoy.

To use biking as a meditation for stress relief, coordinate your breathing with each pedaling stroke. When you breathe in pedal both right and left foot. And the same when you breathe out pedal both right and left foot.

Or, you may be able to pedal 4 strokes while breathing in, and 4 strokes while breathing out. Use whatever even and regular pattern feels the most comfortable.

The coordinated right and left pedaling combined with the even breathing draws more oxygen into your body than a slower activity, and pushes out more carbon dioxide. It is an aerobic activity and good for health, as such.

To review how to use biking meditation for stress relief: Be sure your bike is in safe condition, take along water for a long ride, wear your safety equipment, ride with a buddy, let an adult know where you are going, and use the coordinated breathing and pedaling described above.



40. Swinging Meditation for Kids

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Swinging is a fun way to meditate while outdoors in the fresh air to get rid of stress that has gotten you tied up in knots!

It is a moving meditation and joins the ranks of other stress relief meditations like walking, biking, running and swimming.

What is unique and fun about a swinging meditation is it can be done in your own backyard by yourself, or on the playground with other kids around!

Here's how to do a swinging meditation

Sit on the swing seat and take hold of the rope or ropes. Be sure to hold on with both hands at all times for balance and control.

Push off with both feet together to get started maybe you will need to push off a couple of times to get some momentum going.

To maintain your swinging begin a rhythmic pattern of bending your knees and pushing your feet forward with some energy to swing forward. To go back, when you are at the top of your swing forward, pull your legs back under your seat with an energetic pull. This is called pumping.

All during the swinging coordinate your back and forth pumping so your legs remain right alongside each other with your knees almost touching. If you don't keep your legs lined up together doing the same pumping motion you will swing in a twisted fashion rather than straight forward and back.

To begin to get the benefits of your stress relief meditation just keep up the pumping of your feet back and forth in a regular pattern without thinking about it too much.

Rather, this is the time to think about positive things in your life by first bringing an appreciation to mind.

Appreciation for what each of us has puts us in a positive mood, and it is much easier to see and then work out solutions to problems when we are feeling positive and energized.

Swinging meditation is a great way to get energized unless you get dizzy, it gives you a boost of energy and a fresh outlook on life.

After swinging for awhile and starting to feel refreshed and full of new energy slow down your swinging and eventually stop. Go back to what you had been doing or on to a new activity.

If you are old enough, write in your notebook any new problem solving ideas for school, or with friends and family, that came to you during the swinging meditation session!

Article by Susan Helene Kramer; photo credit of child swinging by Stan Schaap



41. Meditation for Kids About Being Kind

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

Being kind is being nice and it makes the person that you are being nice to feel good, and it makes you feel good, too!

Being kind is a passport to making friends, also. When we see someone that is having a problem and then step in to help, everyone benefits both the one being helped and the one helping out.

Guided meditation about being kind

Start by sitting up straight in your meditation place, and begin doing even and natural breathing like this breathe in 1 count and breathe out 1 count, and repeat this even pattern while sitting still and thinking. You don't need to say the numbers during the meditation. Just keep up the even rhythm of breathing.

If you are sitting on a cushion on the floor, fold in your legs and place your folded hands in your lap. If you are sitting in a chair, place the soles of your feet on the floor and place your hands in your lap. If you like, keep a journal and pen at your side to write about any thoughts that come to you about being kind.

Breathing evenly in and out calms the mind and body and is a good preparation for any meditation. And keeping up the even pattern during the meditation gives you a clearer mind and relaxed body so you can turn all your attention to the topic of the meditation.

Now, imagine that you are walking along the street on the sidewalk and you see a woman senior citizen who seems to have too many bags of groceries. She looks like they are too heavy for her.

You run up to her and politely volunteer to carry some of her bags home.

She is grateful and you spend a few minutes going out of your way walking home with her.

Now, notice that you feel like you have more energy than even before you saw the woman needing help. This is what being kind does - helps out another and gives you more energy, too!

To finish your meditation, take a deep breath in and let it out, then open your eyes and stretch out. Write down any new thoughts that have come to you from thinking about being kind.

Take this thought with you: If more people in our world would take the time to be kind to each other, we would realize we really do live in a big worldwide human family.



42. Meditation on Giving Kids Guidance

Article by Susan Helene Kramer Shuchi

We tend to lump children together as one homogenous segment of humanity, more often than not only seeing uniqueness of adults, rather than letting the uniqueness of each child stand out.

Meditation
Sit in your special place and begin even and regular breathing such as 2 counts to breathe in and 2 counts to breathe out. Keep up this even rhythm throughout your meditation without actually doing the counting.

Children are impressionable and react rapidly to stimulus. Children as individuals need a general and personalized plan with their schooling to develop their inherent qualities.

Kids learn best when they see the adults around them modeling what they want the children to learn.

Adults that are around children need to extend a helping hand if they are about to fall; otherwise we should just observe and allow them to master their walk.

The basis for their behavior is set at an early age and refined as they grow into adults. Parents and teachers should set guidelines for kids' behavior at home and at school, with repercussions made known beforehand.

As adults, we have golden opportunities to inspire and bring out the best in kids, our next generation, by our words and actions. Let us, as responsible adults, fully love each other and our children, living as the best examples that we can.

Reflection meditation is valuable for your kids to learn too, helping them to calmly work out sticky situations.

Finish your meditation by taking a deep breath and slowly releasing it. Take a few minutes to write out any new insights in your journal for later review.

Article and photo credit of young blackbird by Susan Helene Kramer


 

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 and may not be used in any manner without express written permission.
Email: susan@susankramer.com

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A meditation and yoga practitioner since 1976, Susan, Shuchi, writes on practical spirituality, family and social issues, and dance. Her instructional books are listed at her web site http://www.susankramer.com/books.html



page created October 3, 2009; updated June 6, 2013

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