Yoga at Boulder Knoll is practiced in two ways. The first is as a group. Once a week, the children gather with a teacher and move through a series of poses together. The goals of these “yoga circles” are to introduce children to new poses, to practice using the breath to help develop concentration and inner calm, and to have fun while moving together. Children also have an opportunity during morning work time to practice yoga on their own, to move through favorite poses or practice calming their own minds and bodies. In both practices, children are encouraged to listen to their own bodies, to be safe and to enjoy this time “on the mat.”
Mindfulness is incorporated into all that we do at Boulder Knoll. We take mindful breaths when we are transitioning between activities. We take mindful breaths when we need to settle down, listen and redirect our attention. We use mindful breaths to help ourselves regulate our emotions, our body and our attention. Our goal with mindfulness is to increase self-awareness of emotions, bodies and thoughts, and to help us ground ourselves when we need help regulating these things. Weekly yoga and mindfulness circles practice these skills as a group, but the language of mindfulness is used as we talk individually with children about their choices, their friendships, the manner in which they move about their day and what to do when their emotions or behaviors are feeling out of control.