Kitchen Safety – It’s Important!

Kitchen.

Making food can be super fun and awesome, and to keep it that way, it’s important to practice a few safety tips when you’re in the kitchen. Having adult backup, knowing how to sterilize and clean your work area, and understanding the proper way to handle different types of foods are all things you need to know and do.

Grown-up Back-up

Before you get started, make sure you get permission to start your cooking project. Let your parent know if your recipe uses knives, a stove or any other appliance used to heat food, or other types of kitchen appliances (blenders, food processors, and other stuff like that), you need to ask an adult for help, especially when you’re just learning.

Having an adult helping you while you cook will help keep you safe, and make sure you have the ability to act properly and quickly if something goes wrong. Besides, it’s always great to have a second set of hands in the kitchen…even the professionals have assistants, and sometimes even whole teams!

Wear an apron to keep your clothes clean and avoid staining. Make sure your shirt, especially, isn’t too large and baggy, as loose fabric can get caught on moving appliance parts, catch on fire, and create other hazards.

Big Bad Bacteria

When you’re working with raw food (even vegetables), you have to keep your kitchen, your cooking gear, and yourself — CLEAN. When you keep your materials clean, it keeps bacteria from contaminating your food.

BACTERIA is what makes you sick (germs), CONTAMINATION is what happens when dirty stuff (like bacteria) gets into clean stuff (like your food).  Food doesn’t have to LOOK dirty to BE dirty, so it’s important to:

Practice the following SUPER IMPORTANT safety tips all the time

  1. Before you start, wash your hands with soap and clean water
  2. Wash your hands before and after handling raw meat, poultry, egg, and fish products. < Really important
  3. Wash your cutting board, knives, and surfaces, especially in between switching from meat to raw veggies and fruits
  4. Make sure all your fruits and veggies are thoroughly washed (you can fill up the sink with water and a couple Tablespoons of white vinegar to make a good veggie wash)
  5. Clean as you go
  6. Don’t eat raw eggs, or foods that have uncooked eggs in them (like dough)
  7. Wash your hands before you eat
  8. Have an adult help you properly store leftovers

Sharp and Hot – PAY ATTENTION!

Always ask your grown-up if you can use appliances with cutters, blades, or heating elements. If they say it’s ok to use a knife, point the blade away from your body and keep your fingers away from the blade when you’re cutting. And watch it when you’re not using it, too. Be careful where you wave that thing!

Pay Attention! Give 100% of your attention to what you’re doing at all times.

Don’t get burned

  • Use potholders or oven mitts when handling hot pots, pans, or baking trays. Don’t use your shirt, or a towel, or the cat.
  • Turn pot and pan handles toward the back of the stove so you won’t flip them over by accident.
  • Never try to relight the pilot light on a gas stove. Only an adult should do this. An adult should also light the burners for you and make sure to pay close attention when you’re near the stove so you don’t catch yourself, clothes, or utensils on fire.
  • Use only microwave-safe dishes in the microwave. Some dishes can break, crack, explode, or get too hot in the microwave. If you’re not sure if something is safe for use in the microwave, ask your grown-up.
  • NEVER put anything metal in the microwave. Even a little foil on a label can cause sparks and fire.

If you practice good safety and cleanliness, and pay attention to what you’re doing, cooking can be a grand adventure. If you have any questions about what’s safe and what’s not, ask your grown-up! Chances are, they know a thing or two about kitchen safety.

Balloon Squeeze Balls

balloon squeeze craft

About Stress

The word “stress” has many meanings. It can be a noun — emotional and physical pressure you experience. (“Homework is such a major stress!”) It can also be a verb — emotional and physical reactions in your body as a result of the pressure. (“Homework is totally stressing me out!”) Stress can also be subjective, meaning it can be good or bad depending on the person experiencing it. (Maybe you love doing homework!)

Nevertheless, when people talk about stress, they’re usually talking about negative stress. This is the bad kind — and it’s important to know how to recognize and deal with it. When you feel negative stress, you also often feel anxious, frustrated or angry. It can also show up in your body — with a stomachache or headache.

So what can you do when you’re feeling negative stress? One GREAT thing is… (surprise!) yoga. Another great thing to do is to use a stress ball — a squishy toy you can squeeze when life gets challenging.


Balloon Squeeze Balls

Create these super-cute Balloon Squeeze Balls for yourself — or for someone special!

Supplies:

  • Balloons
  • Flour
  • Funnel
  • Permanent Markers

Instructions:

  1. Blow up the balloons, then release them — to stretch them out.
  2. Use the funnel to fill the balloons with flour.
  3. Tie the ends of the balloons. (Get a grown-up for help!)
  4. Draw faces on the balloons with a permanent marker.

Wonderful Winter Lesson Plan

polar bears

Explore the winter season’s animals, characteristics and interesting facts while practicing yoga in a fun, safe and educational way with this Wonderful Winter Lesson Plan!

MATERIALS

  • Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle
  • Paper
  • Scissors
  • Markers
  • Tape or glue

CONNECTING CIRCLE

Peace Breath – Close your eyes. Relax your face muscles. Breathe in. Breathe out and whisper the word “peace.” Do 3 to 6 times. As you say the word, feel the peace inside you. Repeat a silent affirmation such as “I am peaceful.” Slowly open your eyes. This pose Increases oxygenation and triggers the relaxation response in the body.

Close your eyes. Relax your face muscles. Let your skin drape over your bones like a soft blanket. Breathe in. Breathe out and whisper the word “peace.” Repeat. As you say the word, feel the peace inside you. Send peace to the animals, trees and plants. Send peace to your family and friends. Send peace to countries in the world that are at war. Send peace to all the people you love. 

POSES AS PATHWAYS

Sun Salutation – During winter, the sun’s rays hit the Earth at a shallow angle, which minimizes the amount of energy that hits any given spot. Additionally, long nights and short days prevent the Earth from warming up. Let’s warm up by saluting the sun. Repeat one to ten times.

There are numerous styles of Sun Salutations. This is one example. Start in Namaste, raising your arms overhead and stretching upward. Fold forward into Ragdoll pose. Step back with one leg into a lunge. Step back with the other leg into Lizard pose. Slowly come down to the floor with your knees, chest and chin. Bring your hips down to the floor, and lift up into S is for Snake pose. Curl your toes under and stretch into Down Doggity Doggy Down pose. Repeat, beginning with the opposite leg and finishing in Namaste.

What do people do to prepare for the winter season? (Chop wood, buy winter clothes…)

Woodchopper – Time to chop wood to keep our house warm. We need 10 logs for the fire, so let’s count 10 chops. Note: For older kids, count by 5’s or 10’s.

Take a stance like a woodchopper with the feet hip-distance apart. Interlace the fingers and swing your ax over your head with an inhale. Exhale as you bring your ax down and split your log. Come back and forth several times. Remain down and then roll up slowly. Repeat.

Breathing Train – Over winter break, many people visit their relatives. Do any of you? Let’s take an imaginary trip on a train.

Stand or sit in a circle with your hands on the rib cage of the person in front of you. See if you can feel movement in the torso as they breathe. Now, walk or squat in a circle making choo-choo sounds. Vary the speed of your train. Notice the movement of the rib cage. Has your breathing changed?

Driving My Car – Many people take car trips to visit relatives. Play some driving music like Baby You Can Drive My Car by the Beatles. Think of a place you could drive to in your imaginary car that starts with the same letter as your first name, Marsha Memphis, or Don Denver.” (Note: For younger students, the teacher should create the locations for the kids.)

Sit on the floor. Extend your legs out in front of you. Keep your spine and your legs long. Reach up and pull a steering wheel out of the sky. Don’t forget to fasten your seat belt! Begin rocking from one hip to the other and scooting your body forward to drive your car.

Finger Dancing – Snow falls in many parts of the country in the winter. Imagine cool snowflakes softly falling on you…

Sit on your heels or cross-legged. Begin at the top of your head and gently stimulate your hair and skin by lightly dancing your fingers all the way down your body. Allow the self-touch to feel good, as it wakes you up, stimulates your skin and lymph system and makes you feel alive. Do this technique along with Salutations to Me. Each time you touch a part of your body say a silent affirmation or kind statement to that place: toes; skull, hair, face, ears, neck, throat, chest, breasts, belly, butt, legs, arms, feet, etc.

Eagle – Birds migrate south for warmer weather in the winter. Let’s practice a bird pose. Try to balance for 10 seconds on each side and gradually increase the time.

Begin in Mountain pose. Lift your right leg and wrap it over your left leg. If you can, hide your right foot and toes behind your left calf. Bring your bent arms up in front of you and place the right elbow on top of your left. Twist together your forearms bringing your palms together. You can also interlace your fingers. Bend your knees. Untangle yourself and change sides, bringing your left leg over your right leg and your left elbow on top of your right. Try to balance for 10 seconds on each side and gradually increase the time. Use a focus friend if you need guidance

Circle of Friendship Flowers – Geese fly in formation and work together as a team, we will now practice a pose that takes teamwork.

Kneel in a circle, holding hands. As you inhale, reach your arms up, lift your buttocks off your heels, and stretch back arching your back and neck. As you exhale, continue to hold hands and fold down into Child’s Pose. Repeat a few times imagining all the different flowers that you could be.

Polar Bear – The polar bear is a cold weather animal There are five nations with polar bears: U.S. (Alaska), Canada, Russia, Greenland, and Norway.

Begin in Heel-Sitting pose. Open your knees wide apart, toes touching behind you. Bend forward at the hips and slide your chest along the floor. Place your chin on the floor and put your paws over your nose to keep yourself warm. Breathe in and out.

READING COMES ALIVE WITH YOGA

Read aloud Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? by Bill Martin Jr. and Eric Carle and teach the following poses while reading the book:

R is for Roar – Practice this pose round-robin style and have one child start, by rising and doing a unique roar, have the children repeat this, one by one until everyone has done the pose.

Begin in Heel-Sitting pose. Separate your knees a little bit and open your fingers to form lion claws. Place your claws on top of your thighs. Breathe in and puff up your proud lion chest with your breath. Open the back of your throat as you breathe out with a quiet, throaty “roar.” Stretch your tongue out toward your chin. Quietly roar three times. Then get louder and roar several more times.

Flamingo – Do both sides 2 or 3 times.

Begin in Mountain Pose. As you extend one leg straight back, bend forward at the hips. Spread your arms open like graceful wings. Establish your balance by clearing your mind and fixing your attention on your breath. If you feel like flying, gently flap your wings. Repeat with the opposite leg.

Cobra – A snake’s backbone is made up of many vertebrae attached to ribs. Humans have approximately 33 vertebrae and 24 ribs. Snakes have between 200-400 vertebrae with as many ribs attached! That is what makes them so flexible and helps them move along!

Lie on your belly. Gently squeeze your legs together to shape your body long and strong, like a snake’s. Place your hands under your shoulders and breathe in. Lift up your chest and head. Pull your shoulders down away from your ears. Breathe out and hiss the sound of a snake. Flick out your tongue. Lower your chest and rest on the ground. Repeat.

Elephant – Swing your trunk and walk. Dip your trunk into the river and throw it back over your head. Spray the other elephants with your trunk. Trumpet like an elephant.

Make a trunk with your arms and interlaced fingers. Swing your trunk. Dip your trunk into the river and throw it back over your head. Spray the other elephants with your trunk.

QUIET QUESTS

Lie down on your backs and get comfortable, close your eyes. Listen to the sweet sound of your own breath in and out. Feel the gentle rise and fall of your belly as you breath. (pause) Imagine you just spent the day sledding or skiing with your family and now you are resting. You can hear the snow as it gently hits the walls and roof of your house. (pause) Once again feel the gentle rise and fall of your belly. Up and down. (pause) Now bring your attention back to the room, gently wiggle your fingers and toes. Slowly roll onto your right side and rest. Gently push yourself up to sitting.

VISUAL VIGNETTES

Note: This visual can be done at the beginning of class, before the guided visualization or at the end of class. Have the kids cut out circles and glue or tape them onto a piece of paper. Feel free to use colored paper, markers, glitter or any craft material you have on hand to spice up your bears. For younger students, consider pre-cutting the circles yourself and having the kids decorate and put together.
.
CLOSING CIRCLE

Fountain of Oms

Everyone chants OM at their own pace and rhythm. Start together, but everyone’s duration can be different. Let the OMs keep coming at various intervals; some short, some long. Feel the Fountain of OMs wash through and around you. The sound and vibration is very powerful. Keep your eyes closed and keep chanting. Keep the OMs flowing and allow the sound to cease with its own natural conclusion.

 

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“Sugar-free” Crustless Apple Pie

basket of apples

No sugar, no crust…is this even pie?

I guess it’s not technically pie, but it has all the right flavors and it’s delicious!

Apples have lots and lots of natural sugars, like most fruits. Along with bananas, apples have some of the highest natural sugar content of any fruit. Sometimes apples and apple juice are even used as sweeteners, instead of processed sugar, for organic and natural desserts.

What does processed mean when we’re talking about sugar? The white granular sugar you may see in your home is usually made from these two plants:

Sugar cane is a type of grass that is packed full of natural sugar. Sugar beets are beet plants with very sugary roots. When they are processed, the cloudy brown, sugary juices are squeezed out of the plants by machines. The water from the juice evaporates, and brownish sugar crystals are left over. Sometimes these brown sugar crystals are sold as sweeteners. Sometimes, they are cleaned even more, pulling out all the minerals and vitamins and leftover microscopic bits of plant matter, until it is sparkling and white, leaving only the sugar behind. This is what we call table sugar. It is as pure as sugar gets.

It’s OK to have this type of sugar in moderation, meaning sometimes, and in small quantities. But it’s better for your body if you can enjoy sweets in their natural form, like eating a whole apple or banana.

We’re going to make a delicious apple-pie-like dessert, with only the sweetness of the apples themselves for sugar!

Ingredients:

  • Four large sweet apples, cored, skinned (optional), and sliced thinly. (Try Pink Lady, Gala, Fuji, Jonagold type apples)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon flour or gluten-free flour
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 Tablespoons of slightly melted butter or margarine (don’t get it too hot, or it will burn you!) *

Instructions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Put all the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl and combine well. Melt the butter in the microwave for 10-15 seconds. Add the apples and toss them into the mixture to lightly cover them with the spices and flour. Now add the water and melted butter, and smoosh it all around with your fingers until all the apples are covered with the spices and flour mixture. Spread everything out evenly in an 8×8″ baking pan and bake for about 40 minutes, stirring the apples every 10-15 minutes.

What you will end up with is an ooey-gooey apple pie filling that you can eat just like it is for a healthy snack or dessert, put on top of ice cream, or add to a bowl of granola. Yum!

* Vegan Option: Replace butter with coconut oil.


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Animal Hand-tlers

Animal Hand-tlers Craft

An easy craft for the season! Create Animal Hand-tlers to wear while you celebrate the holidays!

Supplies:

  • Two pieces of card stock or construction paper per pair
  • Scissors
  • Writing utensil
  • Stapler and/or glue
  • Optional: coloring tools, paints, sequins, and other “flair” for decorating

Instructions:

  • Fold construction paper in half (short way) and trace hand on one half. Cut out both at the same time.
  • Fold other piece of construction paper in half, longways, and then each half in half. Cut along the lines. This will make one (with a left over paper strip) big head band or two small headbands.
  • Staple or glue the ends of the strips together to make them longer and measure the band around your head. If it’s not long enough, add a third strip to extend and cut to fit. Do not staple or glue them together to make the band yet.
  • The antlers will be laid out with the thumbs facing inward. Decorate or color them if you want to. Decorate or color the band if you want to.
  • Find the center of the band, and staple or glue the hand shapes to the inside, so the bottom of the palm is under the band.
  • Finally, close the band where it fits your head by stapling it together in the back, and then cutting off any parts that are too long.
  • Wear and make animal noises! What does a reindeer sound like? How about a moose?

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Pita Holiday Trees

Pita Trees

The holidays are filled with sugary-sweet snacks… from Christmas cookies to candy canes to delicious homemade pies. That’s one reason we LOVE this healthy kid-friendly snack… that’s simple enough for kids to put together without help!

Total time: 30m or less

Ingredients:

  • Package of pita bread
  • Green Garden Dip* or other green and white dip – like tzatziki, spinach dip
  • Brightly colored veggies (tiny cherry tomatoes, red, yellow, and green peppers, black olive slices, etc.)
  • Optional: fresh dill

Instructions:

  • Cut each pita round like a pie, into eight triangles, and place on a serving platter, points up.
  • Spoon green dip onto each pita
  • Put little bits of fresh dill on top to look like pine branches
  • Chop the vegetables and decorate the “trees.”
  • Serve and eat! YUM!

GREEN GARDEN DIP RECIPE

Ingredients:

  • Large or mid-size container of Greek yogurt (not single serve)
  • Bundles of fresh leafy green herbs, like: dill, parsley, mint, basil, and tarragon.
  • 2-4 green onions. Use the whole thing, just cut off roots and any brown leaves
  • One clove fresh garlic, or a ½ Tablespoon of powdered garlic
  • ½ Tablespoon sea salt
  • ½ Tablespoon ground black pepper
  • Juice of ½ lemon
  • *optional – 2-3 Persian cucumbers, 1/2lb of spinach, water chestnuts, etc.

Instructions:

I use the two-pound size of Greek yogurt, because this green dip is SO delicious, you’ll want lots left over for veggie dip, sandwiches, dressing…you’ll be evaluating everything in the fridge as a possible vehicle for this yummy green goodness. If you want to make a smaller batch, just scale down until you get the herb-to-yogurt density you like. Drain the extra fluid/whey from the container of yogurt before you start. If you want to make a vegan version of this dressing, you can use coconut yogurt, but you might want to add some chickpeas, soft tofu, white beans, or pureed cashews to thicken the mixture.

Clean and leaf the herbs. Discard the stems or save them for flavoring stock. Chop the cucumbers into slices. Throw all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until herbs are ground small and dip is uniform. The more herbs you add, the thicker the dip will be. If you want to add a little more mass to the dip, throw in a Persian cucumber or two, or perhaps some spinach. If you use water chestnuts, drain well and dice small, and add them after the rest of the mixture is pureed.

The dip may be a little runny when you make it, but will thicken a little once it’s been refrigerated overnight. It’s fine to use right away for the pita trees, though.


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Holiday Stress Busters for Parents

Woman with Head in Hands

The holidays are upon us and as rich, wonderful and filled with love as the holidays might be we sometimes find ourselves surrounded by stress. But why choose that when you can choose something much more fun instead?

Use The Energy of Asking to make your YogaKids holidays the most stress free ever.

“Ask and you shall receive.” The great thing about the energy of asking is that you’re not looking for an answer. In fact, the point is simply to ask a question and then let it go. Easy! Not getting attached to the results of our actions is a core idea of yoga. Sit back and let the universe provide and dazzle you.

Here are 3 tools any parent can use in just seconds to stay cool as a breeze through the holidays

Question #1: Have you noticed how many people around you appear stressed out? Friends, family and even people on the street you don’t even know, right? What if the stress you’re experiencing is just picking up on everybody else’s stuff? What if that stress isn’t even yours?

So if you start feeling a little stressed, try asking the question, “Who does this belong to? Wait, is it really even mine?” Maybe just asking the question will help you feel a little lighter, a little more peaceful and relaxed. If asking the question brings even a twinge of a smile to your face, then you can say, “Return to sender.”  Whatever ‘it’ is —  just return it to sender, back to wherever it might have come from. You don’t have to know or try to figure it out! That part is not your job! Just pack it up and let it go.

Question #2: Having a holiday multitasking overload? Is rushing around making you crazy (see tool #1)? What if you can get everything you’d love to get done in a fun, centered, grounded way?

Your kids have learned to Take Five, how about you?

Take a moment, ground your feet to connect with the earth and and bring your awareness out of your head and into your heart. You can close your eyes if you like. Put one hand on your belly and use the other to take in a slow, five count inhalation. Exhale just as long or longer. Try doing this five times, although even once will work wonders.

You can do this anywhere and anytime. Sitting, standing or even laying down. If you’re in the middle of a store or at an auction you might want to keep your hand down!

Question #3: If you are shuddering at the thought of an upcoming holiday, gathering this simple question might just make all the difference in the world.

Simply ask, “How can this turn out far greater and more amazing than anything I could possibly imagine?” Remember you’re not looking for an answer, or a way to figure it out. Just ask the question and let it go. If your brain had the answer, you would have figured it out already! Ask the universe to show you something amazing and have fun seeing what happens!

Being in The Asking Energy allows the universe to do her stuff and show up for you in unpredictable and unexpected ways. Ask and let go of your expectations. One of the great lessons shared in YogaKids is that more joy and laughter serves us in the most magical of ways. Would you like to have some more of that? Just ask and and see what shows up!

 

Snowman Glitter Shaker

Snowman Glitter Shaker craft

GLITTER! What a great addition to a snow shaker! Your YogaKids will love this winter craft idea of a Snowman Glitter Shaker.

Supplies

  • One jar with a screw on lid (like a pasta sauce jar)
  • One 12”x12” piece of felt for the hat
  • Hot glue
  • Glycerin
  • A ribbon or other piece of fabric for the scarf
  • A pipe cleaner for the hat
  • A small piece of orange paper, cut into a triangle, for the carrot nose
  • A black sharpie for eyes and buttons
  • Other decorations, like jingle bells and pom-poms for the hat, or buttons for the eyes, mouth
  • Water
  • Plastic glitter in large and small sizes.

Instructions:

You may adjust the glycerin-to-water ratio for the size of your jar – I am using a 24 oz. jar in the example.

  • Remove the label and scrape off any leftover glue. Make sure the jar is completely dry.
  • Begin by tying the scarf onto the jar and adding a dot of hot glue to the front and back, between the ribbon or fabric and jar, to hold the scarf in place.
  • Glue on button eyes or draw on black circles for eyes, mouth, and buttons. Glue on the nose.
  • Trace a circle onto the felt using a bowl, and cut it out. Note: Using the lid of your jar as a guide, you should have no less than 1” extra fabric all around. I have about 1.5” margins on mine.
  • The larger the circle, the floppier the hat.
  • Add ¼ cup of glycerin and about 1 cup water. Put the lid on the jar and shake until mixture is homogeneous.
  • Put a maximum of 2 Tablespoons of plastic glitter into the jar, then fill until about 1” from the top of the jar. Put the lid on and make sure you like the consistency of the water and glitter. If you want to add more glycerin to make the glitter move more slowly, add it now and mix well.
  • Once you’re happy with the water viscosity, fill the last remaining space up to the brim and put the lid on. Dry any water spots that may have leaked out, and hot glue around the base of the lid.
  • Center the circle of felt on the lid and hot glue it in place.
  • Crimp the felt as needed to get the shape of hat you want, and wrap the pipe cleaner tightly under the base of the lid, twisting the ends to hold it together. You will probably need more than one set of hands for this step! Add decorations, like pom-poms, silk flowers, or a bow) over the place where you twist the pipe cleaner closed.
  • Let it snow!

Create and teach your own Great Ideas as a Certified YogaKids Teacher!

Handprint Menorah

Handprint Menorah craft

The Festival of Lights has begun! Celebrate with this easy Handprint Menorah craft… perfect for your YogaKids class or an at-home arts & crafts activity!

Supplies:

  • Patterned or brightly colored paper to use for candle flames
  • A piece of card stock
  • Tempera or other water based paint in the color you want your menorah
  • Scissors
  • Glue or glue stick
  • Metallic sharpies, paints, sequins, etc. optional – for decorating the menorah

Instructions:

  • Fold the card stock in half, and then unfold it. Lay it flat.
  • Placing your left hand on the left side of the paper, with your thumb straight up, across the center fold line.
  • Trace your hand, then repeat on the right side, with your thumb in the same place as the left thumb.
  • Paint inside the lines you just traced.
  • Allow paint to dry and then decorate over the top of the menorah.
  • Fold the piece of paper you’re using for flames in half. Draw five flame shapes and cut them out of the folded paper to make ten flames. (That’s one left over)
  • Glue a flame in the center, then “light” one finger of the menorah for each night of Chanukah.
  • Keep the extra flames in an envelope nearby so they don’t get lost, and enjoy the Festival of Lights!

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Body Concert

Holiday Bells

We all learn in different ways and some of us learn best through music and rhythm. By incorporating music with yoga poses, we not only tap into the passions of children, but poses come alive, are more fun and memorable. During the holiday season, we hear many familiar songs. This year, don’t just sing the songs, act them out or add movement – to make it a total body experience.

Many yoga poses mimic animals and many animals make noises. While doing Bug Pickin’ Chimp pose, kids can walk around like chimps and maybe even sing a holiday song with “ooo” and “eee” instead of words. Try singing “Jingle Bells” that way… it is fun and will surely make you smile! While on your belly, reach back and grab a hold of your ankles for Rocking Horse pose. Sing “Rudolph the Red-Nose Reindeer” and pretend to fly through the sky. Lift into Down Diggety Doggie Down pose. While walking around the room on all fours to the beat of the music, sing a rhythmic song like “Frosty the Snowman.” Don’t forget to walk backwards too!

Why not play a little game? Stand up for Tarzan’s Thymus Tap. While tapping just below the collarbone with your fingertips, tap out the beat to a holiday song everyone might know. See if someone can guess what song it is. Maybe try “We wish you a Merry Christmas” or “My Dreydl.” Maybe do Ankle-Heel-Toe Walking around the room for another game. While signing the “Twelve Days of Christmas” determine a certain way each “gift” walks. Maybe the first one is walking on the heels. Then each time you get to “a partridge in a pear tree” everyone walks on their heels. This can be a really fun way to sing the song and challenge your memory. Get creative and have fun with it!

Your kids will be so excited those holiday songs are now a full body experience – they just might add the poses the next time the family breaks out in song! (Learn all these poses in the book, YogaKids: Educating the Whole Child Through Yoga, available in the YogaKids Shop!)

YogaKids Poses:

  •   Bug Pickin’ Chimp
  •   Rocking Horse
  •   Down Diggety Doggie Down
  •   Tarzan’s Thymus Tap
  •   Ankle-Heel- Toe Walking

Create and teach your own Great Ideas as a Certified YogaKids Teacher!

Snowman Skewers

snowman skewer snack

Make fruit fun with these healthy Snowman Skewers! Easy enough for your YogaKids to make on their own, this super-cute snack is a perfect holiday treat!

Total time: 30m or less

Ingredients:

  • Bananas – each banana makes about two and a half skewers
  • One red and one green apple
  • A few red and green grapes
  • Chocolate chips or raisins (baby-sized chips work best)
  • Wood skewers
  • A flat serving platter or tray
  • Optional: a little bit of powdered sugar to dust serving plate with “snow” – works best when the platter is dark.

Instructions:

  • Cut ¾ – 1” thick slices of banana, put three on each skewer, circular cut side facing outward.
  • Quarter the apples and cut each quarter into thirds. Put on the skewer on top of the bananas – this is the snowman’s hat. Note: You might want to help little kids. It can be tough to get through the skin of the apple with the wood skewer, and we don’t want anyone getting stabbed!
  • Put a grape on the very top, over the apple, to make the hat’s pom-pom.
  • Using the chocolate chips, stick eyes and buttons into the bananas.
  • Optional: lightly dust your serving platter with powdered sugar and lay out all the snowmen.
  • Serve and eat; mmm… delicious!

Create and teach your own Great Ideas as a Certified YogaKids Teacher!

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