Spring is upon us, and the birds are chirping. We really gave them something to chirp about this past Thursday as we hung hand made bird feeders in Discovery Woods as a special Earth Day treat. Knowing Paul would be out on Friday (and he was the brains behind this fun project), we decided to walk in the woods on Thursday to get some exercise, embrace the season, and give the birds their special treat which has finally dried and were ready to go.
It was such a beautiful day, I couldn’t help myself but to ask the kids to stop and take a moment to have some gratitude.
Fresh off a yoga and mindfulness training directed at kids this age, I have a whole list of things I am eager to try with the kids. This seemed like the perfect time to have a mindful moment with them, and let go of thoughts that don’t make us feel so good. We talked about how our brains are like machines, producing thoughts all the time…all kinds of thoughts about all kids of things! When our brains are doing this, they are doing their job. From here, we have a choice- we can to listen those thoughts, or ignore them and let them go; we have the power to decide what is going to influence us. This was a great starting point before we closed our eyes, connected with our breath, and let go of the things that didn’t make us feel great. We sat quietly for a few minutes, so quiet you could hear the creek trickling and the leaves crunching; it was truly beautiful to see 20 six and seven year olds so content with nothing but themselves. Once we came back to the present moment, I gave them the opportunity to share something they thought about if they wanted to. A few kids said they thought about happy things like sleepovers and playdates, while other shared that they let go of times when they got hurt or had a spat with a friend. It was a powerful conversation.
We ended the hike by throwing the last of the bird seed in the air and making a silent wish for Mother Earth.
Today, as we prepared to write in our Newsbook, several people offered that they felt our mindful moment was a highlight of the week. It was a busy week full of rich learning opportunities, but I agreed that this was a highlight for me as well. Mission accomplished.