Kids Yoga Story: Penguin’s Hidden Talent by Alex Latimer

Penguin wants to be a part of the talent show, but he doesn’t have a special talent. Enjoy this lovely picture book that teaches a very sweet lesson with twenty-three yoga poses!

The big annual Talent Show was just round the corner. And everyone was practising in their homes (House: Standing with your legs wide, hands together above your head, making a pointy roof). Everyone except penguin. Penguin couldn’t think what his talent was (Penguin: Standing with our legs and heels together, we turn out our toes. With our arms down by our sides we stick our hands out a little bit and waddle side to side)

Albatross wanted to help Penguin find his talent. “Have you ever tried swallowing a whole marlin?” he asked (Bird: Standing up, bend forward from your middle, keeping your back long and straight. Your arms become wide wings floating up and down at your sides as you fly like a bird). But Penguin could only swallow a sardine (Fish: Lying on your back, prop yourself up on your elbows and point your toes down. Then pop your chest up to the sky and look all the way back behind you).

Bear also wanted to help (Bear Walks: Pressing into our hands and feet we lift our bottom to the sky. Now we come right up onto our tiptoes and take a walk like a bear). “Have you ever tried juggling appliances?” he asked. But Penguin only managed to break a blender and get a toaster stuck up a tree (Tree: Standing tall, place the heel of your foot on top of the other. Bring your hands together at your heart and grow your branches up tall).

“Have you tried doing magic tricks?” asked Rabbit (Hare: Coming to our knees we lean forward a little then cross our hands behind our back. As we fold all the way forward our arms lift up to the sky like very long hare ears). But though Penguin made Rabbit’s watch disappear, he couldn’t bring it back again (Surfer/Warrior 2 for magic trick: Standing with your feet wide, bend your front knee and spread your arms out wide).

“Have you tried burping the alphabet?” asked Fox (Dog: We press our feet and hands into the floor as we lift our bottoms to the sky, going woof woof). But all Penguin could do was hiccup.

“Don’t worry about me,” said Penguin. “I will just help organize the Talent Show. That way I can still be involved even though I don’t have a talent.” So while his friends practiced, Penguin drew posters, made phone calls (Telephone: Sitting tall with our legs out long, pick up our foot and holding it to our ear), sent emails.

Finally, the big day arrived. The opening ceremony was terrific. There were fireworks (Thunderstorm: Feet wide, arms wide like a house pose, clap your hands above your head like the big claps of thunder in the sky), and jets (Aeroplane: We come to our knees and take our arms out wide. We drop down onto one arm and wave at the sky. Then we bring our foot in front of our knee and shoot our back leg out to the side), and loads of good music. And a famous band played. Then the show started. Snake (Snake: Coming onto our tummy, we place our hands underneath our shoulders. We wiggle up into a snake), Mouse (Mouse: We kneel down and tuck ourselves into a little tiny ball, like a mouse), Crocodile (Crocodile: Lie on your side with your arms long over your head. You can open your crocodile jaws by opening your arms or feet, then clapping your hands or feet back down together), Frog (Frog: Up on your toes, crouching down, with your knees out wide and use your hands for balance and hop!), Goat (Goat: Sitting tall, legs out long, we bend one knee up. We hug that knee, then placing our hand behind us, bring our other elbow round to the outside of the knee, looking back over our shoulder) were among the audience. They danced and enjoyed the party (Dancer: Standing tall, take hold of one leg. Lifting your other arm up to the sky, kick your back foot into your hand and tilt forwards). And the winner was Bear (Bear Walks: Pressing into our hands and feet we lift our bottom to the sky. Now we come right up onto our tiptoes and take a walk like a bear). Everyone celebrated but not Penguin. He walked slowly home through the snow (Penguin: Standing with our legs and heels together, we turn out our toes. With our arms down by our sides we stick our hands out a little bit and waddle side to side). Bear, Albatross, Fox and Rabbit were very worried about Penguin. They decided to organize a party to thank him. The next morning when Penguin came outside, he found that his friends had thrown him a party. And it wasn’t a very good one. “If only you had organized this party, Penguin” said Rabbit (Hare: Coming to our knees we lean forward a little then cross our hands behind our back. As we fold all the way forward our arms lift up to the sky like very long hare ears). “Then it wouldn’t be so terrible.” And just then the Penguin realized how talented he really was. “I don’t need a medal, I need a telephone.” And he organized his own party. There were balloons (Hot Air Balloon: Sit up tall with your legs crossed, cup your hands round your mouth and as you blow up your balloon stretch your arms gradually as it gets bigger), party cake with candles on it (Candle: Lying flat on your back, arms out wide, lift your legs and feet up to the sky. Your toes are the flickering candle flames). It was a great party at all!

Relaxation:

What a warm story of Penguin who would love to take part in the big annual talent show. At the end, his friends help him discover what he is really good at. Actually everyone has a talent. Everyone has a hidden potential. The important thing is to reveal this potential. Now it is your turn. Think about your potentials, talents. What are you really good at? Take a few more breaths while thinking… When you are ready move your fingers and toes, hug your knees into your chest. Roll over onto your side. We press ourselves up to sit, crossing our legs. We bring our hands together at our heart. Thank you for doing yoga with me today. Namaste!