- One yoga mat per student.
- Enough floor space that students can spread out.
- Arrange the yoga mats, ensuring that students have enough space to move without bumping into one another.
- If you have enough space, consider arranging the yoga mats in a circle so that you can see each student from your own mat.
Begin by sitting comfortably on your mat.
First gently cross your legs. And now straighten your back. Do you feel a little taller when you sit this way?
Today we’re going to connect our movements with our thoughts. Let’s practice the movement first.
Begin by lifting your arms out and then up until they are over your head.
Now touch your palms together. Wonderful.
And now slowly bring them down in front of your heart.
Great job. We’re going to repeat that movement and add kind thoughts as we do so.
As you lift your arms out and up, think quietly to yourself, “May I feel healthy and strong.”
Wonderful. As you touch your palms together over your head, think quietly to yourself, “May I feel happy.”
Excellent. And now as you bring your palms down in front of your heart, think quietly to yourself, “May I feel peaceful.”
Great job. Let’s do that one more time.
First lift your arms out and up as you say out loud, “May I feel healthy and strong.”
Now touch your palms together above your head as you say out loud, “May I feel happy.”
And now bring your palms down in front of you say out loud, “May I feel peaceful.”
Great job. Take a deep breath in. And now let it out.
Notice what it was like for you to think these kind thoughts. Was it comfortable? Was it uncomfortable?
There’s no need to do anything, simply notice how it felt.
You do not need to read the included script verbatim. Adapt the language so that it is appropriate for your students in particular.
This practice can also be done while students are at their desks. Ensure that students are sitting in a way that allows them to reach their arms out without touching one another.
As students become familiar with this practice invite them to integrate their breath with the movement. A simply way to do this is to invite them to pause and take a deep breath in and out after each thought.
Once you complete the practice, invite students to reflect on their experiences as a class. If students find this practice uncomfortable, acknowledge their responses and do not ask them to change how they feel. Instead, invite them to notice their responses each time they do the practice to see whether their responses change (they may not).
This can also be done as partner practice. See the cues for Kind Mind (Partner) if you’re interested in this option.
Authors: Megan Downey and Anna Basille
Adapted from: Compassionate Schools Project