Kids Yoga Story: The Trouble With Dragons by Debi Gliori

The world is populated by some dragons who care nothing for how much they mess up the oceans, chop down the trees, gobble up all the food and use everything up without stopping to think. They need to wake up to what they are doing to their world before all the wildlife is gone.

 If you would like to promote environmental awareness in your kids’ yoga classes, this is a perfect story! The dragons learned how to play nice. Hope we do too! Enjoy this lovely eco-message book of dragons taking the place of humans with twenty-five kids’ yoga poses.

Once upon a time, on a distant planet dragons lived (Planet: Standing with your legs wide, bend your knees and squat down. Bring your arms out like a cactus, opening all the fingers to be faced in front.). The dragons were so comfortable among the trees that they soon filled the forest (Tree: Standing tall, bend your right knee. Place your right foot on the inside of your left leg either above or below your knee joint. Bring your hands in front of your heart or you can lift your arms up to the sky.). After a while, the forest was not enough for the dragons (Dragon: Standing up, come down onto one knee. Reaching your arms over your head, lift your chest. You may link your thumbs together and stick out your tongue as you breath out dragon fire.). Then dragons started spreading all over the place… soon their houses and roads took up all of the space (House: Open your legs wide but a comfortable distance apart. Lift your arms up over your head bringing your hands together.).

Dragons ate all the food and drank all the drink and use everything up without stopping to think (Eating: Sitting on the ground, cross the legs. Fold forward resting the elbows on the ground and enjoy eating!). They also threw parties and made loads of noise (Thymus Tapping: Using fingers or gentle fists, lightly tap the thymus region with a sound like “ooaaaa”. It helps boost energy in the body and stimulates your immune system.) and left a huge mess after playing with their toys. Dragons chopped down the forests (Woodchopper: Standing up, bring your feet wide apart more than hip distance. Taking the arms behind you, interlace your fingers behind your back. Fold forward letting your arms drop over your head.) which melted the Poles. Dragons blew out hot air which made everything hotter and hotter and hotter (Dragon/Lion Breaths: Kneeling up, hands wide, inhale and then exhale with an haaaa letting the tongue drop down and the eyes open wide. Let everything release with this roar.) until all the snow melted and the ice turned to water.

Then the seas started to rise (Raised Hands: Stand with the feet hip distance apart. Lift your arms upwards.) and the deserts expanded (Star: Standing up, widen your feet placing them far away from each other. Lift the arms parallel to the floor. Extend the arms at shoulder level.) until everything was covered in water or sand. Say goodbye to the world into which you were born. Soon everyone else will have packed up and gone. Everyone except the dragons. Imagine a world with no birds and no bees (Bird: Open your legs wide. Come halfway up into a flat back. Lift your arms out at your side like wings floating up and down as you fly like a bird. / Bee: Sitting comfortably, close your eyes and ears with your fingers. Taking a deep breath in and out through your nose, make a humming sound of the bee which is smooth and pleasant. Keep the eyes closed and remain in silence paying attention to the sound echoing deep within.). “Don’t go,” wailed the dragons (Bow Down: Step one foot forward and put your back knee down. Bring both hands down on either side of your foot with the head on the front knee. Push the chest towards the thigh.). “Don’t leave us alone. A world without wildlife is no kind of home.” “If you stay, we all promise to do what it takes to look after the planet for all of our sakes. (Planet: Standing with your legs wide, bend your knees and squat down. Bring your arms out like a cactus, opening all the fingers to be faced in front.)

Kids Yoga Flow of the Story with Stick Figures

As the waters rose higher right over their knees, fox on a boat said “OK, start by not chopping down the trees.” (Fox: Come onto your knees and place the palms on the floor. Lift one leg, bending at the knee. Pointing the toes to the sky, look up. / Boat: Sit on your bottom, knees bent and the soles of your feet on the floor. Lift both legs, shins parallel to ground, arms stretch forward, moving the upper body slightly backwards.) Then, all of the animals chimed in with advice, from the greatest of elephants (Elephant: Standing tall, take your feet wide apart. Reach one arm high to the sky like an elephant trunk, the other arm behind the back. Sway like an elephant swinging its trunk. Move it around as you wish.) to the smallest of mice (Mouse: Sitting on your heels, bend forward. Rest your forehead on the mat in front of you. Place your arms wherever you feel comfortable, they can be extended or down by your sides.).

“Eat food that is grown much closer to home” said a tiger (Tiger: Hands and knees on the floor, bring one arm out extending in front of you at shoulder level. Extend the opposite leg out behind you at hip level. Balance the body on one palm and knee.).

“Leave the wild places and ice caps alone” said a polar bear (Polar Bear: Kneeling up, knees wide, bring your big toes together. Taking your hips back towards your heels, relax your body towards the floor. Make a cup over your nose with your hands.).

“Stop blowing all that hot air but instead choose to walk” said an owl (Owl: Standing up tall on your knees, raise your arms spreading your wings wide and long. Keep your palms downward facing. Gently move your wings as you fly up and down.).

“Put less of our world on the end of your fork” said a rabbit (Rabbit: Sitting on your heels, lean forward. Stretch your arms and shoulders behind you. Interlock your fingers, opening your chest. Bend forward from your hips lifting your arms up to the sky.).

Respect all Earth’s creatures and cherish the land. (Hello Earth: Standing tall, bend forward at the hips. Take the upper body downwards bringing it close to the legs. / Hello Sun: Stand with the feet hip distance apart. Lift your arms upwards and continue the movement doing a back bend.)

Recycle, Reuse and Reduce your demands.

That’s how it happened. If you meet a dragon, you can ask if this story is true. For if we can’t see that our stories are linked then sadly, like dragons we will soon be extinct (Relaxation: Lying comfortably on your back, close your eyes. Feeling the ground, allow yourself to melt downward. Let your feet and arms relax.).

Relaxation:

The dragons are ruining the Earth. They are chopping down trees, fishing out the oceans, eating and drinking everything. It is only a matter of time before the seas rise and the deserts expand. They must change their ways to save the animals. Then, they get plenty of advice on what they can do to stop hurting the Earth and restore their home. Soon, they learn how to play nice…

We are never late for anything. There is something each of us can do to protect and take care of our planet. Just as the existence of a flower cannot be separate from the sun that gives it its energy, the soil that feeds it, and the rain that gives it water, we do not have a separate existence from Earth. Earth unites all people. So, we must protect it.

When you feel ready, you can move your fingers and toes. You can pull your knees to your chest and give them a big hug. And you can get into a comfortable sitting position, bring your hands together in front of your chest. Thank you for doing yoga with me today! Namaste!