At the end of the day, I participated in the workshop teaching Yoga 4 kids with Mireia Castellsagué.
The group was a mixture of yoga teachers with experience in teaching yoga for kids, teachers that have never taught yoga for kids but are interested in doing so, parents and some children and babies roaming around.
Mireia explained how the first class she taught children many years ago was a complete disaster. This made her want to investigate more systems and styles of teaching which lead her to the Waldorf education system. In her opinion, this system is coherent in many ways with Yoga and from which she has found useful pointers for developing her teaching style nowadays.
We combined games, discussions and practices that made us become a child once again and have lots of fun but at the same time gave us useful knowledge for optimizing the way we teach kids or how to begin in case we want to.
Some useful advice drawn from this wonderful workshop:
– try to establish presence with every child, with the intention to be grounded to listen and share during the time you have together – establish eye contact or some basic gentle and conscious touch
– every age group requires a different set up ( ideally 3 – 6 / 7-12 ) – before 3, children are too small to participated in a “yoga class” as they are still very much bound to their mothers.
– up to 12 children is ideal for a class
– be coherent with the rules you establish in class, what is definitely not allowed and for which things you have options and which are these options
– plan the types of practices and games according to your aim or objective that day and don´t be too ambitious about this aim, but rather realistic
– storytelling is a great way to engage children with Yoga BUT try to choose stories that you can share by using the body
and finally but more importantly:
– do not teach in guidance of any book BS – transmit what is true to you!
and have fun! 🙂