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Mindfulness and Meditation for

Kids and Teens

Unlike adults, most children don’t know how to recognise, cope with, or process stress unless they have been taught to. Teaching mindfulness and meditation to kids and teens can prepare them for the stressors that has become their every day lives.

 

Mindfulness and Meditation

Kids and Teens

Unlike adults, most children don’t know how to recognise, cope with, or process stress unless they have been taught to.

 

Kids and teens can be easily bombarded with negative images from the news, movies and computer games. Technology has become a constant distraction, from tvs and computers to mobile phones and gaming devices.  Being silent and still can make them feel bored and uncomfortable or anxious and disconnected. This can make them distract themselves with more activity to the point their nervous systems can become overloaded.

Meditation cultivates the resting response our bodies need for optimal heath and healing. It also improves attention to cognitive abilities such as learning, memory and problem solving. Teaching children to be mindful and live with a greater level of consciousness, helps them to be more present, self aware and accepting of their current state of being, as well as less reactive to stressful situations.

Meditation can help kids & teens

  • Recognise their own inner strengths and resources.
  • Allow the flow of creativity.
  • Understand and manage stress and emotions (and be more open about them).
  • Develop an awareness of the importance of mental self care.
  • Calm the mind chatter and relax the body to assist with restful sleep.
  • Aid focus, concentration and productivity.

Similar to telling your child a bedtime story, meditation helps children use their imagination to switch off and enter into an Alpha state – relaxed but alert.

See our Benefits of Meditation page for a full list of the physical, mental and emotional benefits of teaching Mindfulness and Meditation to kids and teens.

About the Teenage Brain

From around the age of 12 onwards there are significant changes in the adolescent brain. These can be confusing, frightening and isolating, as well as have both positive and negative consequences:

 

  • Higher motivation to engage more out of life – trying new things, taking greater risks, looking for excitement, focusing on the pros rather than the risks.
  • Lower dopamine levels but more of it released at once – feelings of boredom, thrill seeking, need for stimulation.
  • Drive for social connection – making new friends, spending more time with them.
  • Heightened emotions – impulsive, moody, intense, reactive.
  • Expanded sense of consciousness – questioning, exploring.
  • Reduction of brain cells and connections (neurons/synapses) – keeping what they think they need from all the information and skills they have learnt since birth and discarding the rest.
  • Development of myelin sheath over linked neurons – enables faster, more synchronized and efficient flow of information in remaining neural connections.

Just being constantly busy can produce excessive stress on our minds and bodies. Excessive thinking about the past and the future can cause anxiety and depression. Recent studies have shown that one in seven kids aged between 4 and 17 now has a diagnosed mental illness; 8 adolescents a week are committing suicide (an increase of more than 30% over the last 10 years making it the leading cause of death in kids aged between 5 and 17); and they are three times as likely to be injured or killed in an accident during the ages of 12-24.

The good news is – how they choose to focus their attention throughout this period plays an important part in the growth of the brain and overall physical, mental and emotional wellbeing…

Mindfulness for

Kids and Teens Programs

During our Mindfulness for Kids or Teens Program we incorporate a variety of mindfulness, meditation and yoga techniques and exercises to demonstrate a range of topics and practices to cultivate mindful awareness:

  • Breath awareness
  • Body awareness & muscle relaxation
  • Self awareness
  • Sensory awareness
  • Awareness of emotions
  • Awareness of stress
  • Focus & concentration
  • Self esteem & positive affirmations

Each session we talk about the science and purpose of these functions and how to be more aware and mindful of them to cultivate physical, mental and emotional well being, not just for ourselves but for those around us too. Depending on the age group, we integrate each topic with yoga exercises, breathing exercises, games, props and relaxation techniques.

In 2020 our Mindfulness & Meditation Program for Kids is available for purchase as a DIY kit on our Facebook shop and our Mindfulness & Meditation Program for Teens (S.E.A.T. of Awareness Program) is available at Sunshine Coast High Schools as a standalone program for a term or integrated classes as part of an existing wellness program. I also run Mindfulness and Meditation sessions at school camps for grade 6 and up. 

We also have a Meditation for Kids section (suitable for kids aged 8-12) in our new online course portal on Teachable – you can subscribe here

You can view some of our sample meditations on our YouTube Channel.

Feedback

From Participants

 “This Meditation has a really safe feeling, it takes you to a whole other world of control and calm. She really helps a lot with my anxiety and worries. For some reason no other Meditations work well for me. But THIS Meditation is the best!”

“Michelle has provided an amazing meditation experience for txeens! When exams and school life is getting a bit hectic, this is a really great way of winding down and focusing on yourself. She has taught me incredible amounts of knowledge that I still use to this day.”

“Teaching children the life skills of mindfulness cultivates a level of self awareness and self discovery. Living moment to moment with a greater level of consciousness enables them to make thoughtful choices and decisions, with kindness and compassion, to themselves, their friends, families, the greater community and the environment.”  (Michelle Eckles)

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