How to Teach Kids to Meditate

We want children to be healthy and happy all through their lives. However sometimes, they can feel fear, worry, anxiety. When they are stressed;

  • They may have trouble breathing.
  • Their hearts beat faster.
  • Their hands and bodies begin to sweat.
  • Their bodies tense up.
  • Their minds get foggy.

As children develop through adolescence to become teenagers, life grows ever more complicated. And if the children are stressed a lot, their bodies react by getting tired, overwhelmed, and sometimes sick. Perhaps they get headaches or have trouble sleeping. They may experience turbulence in their minds and emotions because their body will be changing rapidly. For children, meditation can offer relief from whatever difficulties they might be encountering in life.

In that sense, meditation can help children get through some of the turbulent times feeling less overwhelmed, more in control and generally happier. Meditation allows children to get in touch with their own inner beings. There is nothing more important for human beings than to know themselves and to have self-love. If children have these two things, they will enjoy a life without much chaos or stress. Teaching them about meditation early would help them do just that. Meditation helps them quiet their minds. It minimizes anxiety and increases happiness.

At each developmental stage, meditation can be a useful tool for decreasing anxiety and promoting happiness. Children are uniquely suited to benefit from meditation practice. Habits formed early in life will inform behaviors in adulthood, and we have the opportunity to give our children the habit of being peaceful, kind and accepting. 

Meditation teaches how to stay calm in stressful situations. It helps children find a safe, happy and quiet place inside themselves whenever they need it. Meditation gives their brains a rest or a moment for a better solution. If they try meditating over and over again, it becomes easier. Just like riding a bike, with more practice, they can easily meditate.

Breathing is nourishing our body. When we breathe in, oxygen gives our cells the energy to keep us healthy. As we breathe out, we release carbon dioxide and toxins from our body.

Now, letโ€™s continue with a breathing activity as an introduction to meditation. You can practice it with your children or students:

Now, take a deep breath.

Breathe in.

And out.

Breathe in and out.

Notice that your mind stops racing when you breathe. Try thinking a thought and breathing at the same time. It is hard to do both at the same time.

You can close your eyes gently if you like.

Breathe in.

And out.

Breathe in and out.

You can control what is going on in your head by changing how you breathe. When you are in control of your thoughts, you will act more calmly, will be more relaxed and happier.

Breathe in.

And out.

Breathe in and out.

Think of your breath as an anchor. No matter what is happening around you. It is a secure part of you. Breath is always with you. A good friend, indeed!

If you practice breathing meditation regularly, it will become a habit. You can always find your breath no matter where you are.

Mindfulness teaches you to leave your mind and notice your body. For more breathing exercises, you may want to read Mindfulness Begins with Breath.