Mindfulness for Kids

2017-11-18_10-28-00_861 (2017-12-01T14_51_53.453)Coming soon: Mindfulness-based class for kids ages 4 – 8 years old. Each week, kids will be taken through meditation and movement exercises, along with fun drama and play-based activities. Kids will explore issues related to conflict, stress, anxiety, confidence and self-esteem through drama and mindfulness activities. These classes offer a fun and creative way for kids to explore issues they are experiencing, and to identify positive ways to reduce worry and develop deeper self-awareness. Participants will be introduced to a variety of mindfulness meditation techniques to help them practice being in the moment and de-escalating moments where they experience big emotions.

IMG_3456Mindfulness meditation: “Mindfulness means paying attention in a particular way; on purpose, in the present moment, nonjudgmentally.” ~ Jon Kabat-Zinn
Kids will be exploring mindfulness experientially as they are taken through a series of mindfulness meditations that include: breath awareness, sitting meditation, laying down body scan, walking meditation, guided visualization, mindful movement and hatha yoga. Through this embodied practice, they will gain experience in paying attention to the present moment and bringing mindfulness to explore whatever they are facing. Mindfulness can help bring awareness to the internal feelings of stress, as they are arising, and how they are being expressed in their thoughts, emotions and in their bodies. This program offers vocabulary to help kids tap into mindfulness when they need it most – during times when they are experiencing big emotions.
2017-06-03_11-03-24_299 (2017-10-11T15_39_02.285)These classes offer fun and interactive ways to explore:

* Breathing and relaxation techniques
* Ways to slow down and become better problem solvers
* Shyness and nervousness
* Self-regulation and focus
* Increased body awareness
* Identifying and reducing stress and worry
* Awareness of emotions

Why mindfulness and drama:

Theatre activities can help students to explore different aspects of their internal and external stressors in a fun and interactive way.

* This combination helps to make learning fun and engaging;

* Drama, coupled with mindfulness, offers a safe and playful entry into deeper personal learning;

* Through role-playing real-life scenarios, kids are able to explore ways to apply mindfulness and to help others and themselves;

* It offers a playful platform to learn mindfulness activities to help centre and focus.

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About the facilitator: Sara Escott is the co-founder and co-artistic director of In Forma Theatre. She has over 15 years of experience as a theatre director, facilitator and educator. In her work, she uses mindfulness, movement and a wide range of theatrical techniques. Sara directs and facilitates community-based theatre projects, and offers children’s programs in schools and community settings.  She facilitates mindfulness programs to adults, youth and children. Sara has a Masters in Adult Education and Community Development (OISE/UT) with a focus on using theatre for peacebuilding, community building and collective change, and an Honours B.F.A. in Theatre Directing (York University). Sara is a qualified Mindfulness-based Stress Reduction Instructor (Centre for Mindfulness Studies & University of Toronto)  and has a certificate in Stress Management and Resilience Training (SMART) Education (Mindfulness Everyday and The University of British Columbia).