Kids Yoga Story: The Smartest Giant in Town by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler

It is one of my favorite stories. There is a giant, whose name is George. On his way home, he meets various animals who desperately need his help and his clothes. It contains eighteen kids’ yoga poses. Enjoy it!

George was a giant (Lift up arms on tiptoes). He always wore the same pair of old sandals and the same old patched-up gown. But one day, George noticed a new shop. It was full of large clothes. So he bought a shirt, a pair of trousers, a belt, a tie, some socks, and a pair of shoes (Lift up arms and bend forward – 3 times to wear clothes). George left his old clothes behind in the shop.

He was about to go home when he heard the sound of a giraffe who was sniffing sadly (Giraffe: Standing tall, we reach our hands up tall, making a long giraffe neck and start walking with your long giraffe legs.). “My neck is very long and so very cold. I wish I had a long, warm scarf” said the giraffe. George took off his tie as he wound it round and round the giraffe’s neck (Neck Exercise: Go all the way around with your neck and the opposite direction).

Then George came to a river (River: Sitting up tall, legs out long in front of you. Point your toes and place your hands behind your bottom with your finger pointing towards your bottom. Lift up your hips). On a boat stood a goat who was bleating loudly (Boat: Sitting on our bottoms, we lift up one foot, then the other foot, and one hand and no hands. Seated twist/Goat/Deer: 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). “My sail blew away in a storm. I wish I had a strong new sail” said the goat. George took off his new white shirt. It made a great sail for the boat.

George came to a tiny ruined house (House: Standing with your legs wide, hands together above your head, making a pointy roof). Beside the house stood lots of mice, all squeaking. “Our house burned down, and we have nowhere to live. I wish we had a new house” said the mother mouse (Mouse: We kneel down and tuck ourselves into a little tiny ball, like a mouse). He took off one of his shoes. The shoe made a perfect home for them. George had to hop along the road now, but he didn’t mind (Flamingo: Standing up, lift one leg up towards your bottom and take hold of your ankle. Lift your other arm up to the sky).

George came to campsite. Beside a tent stood a fox who was crying (Downward facing Dog/ Fox: We press our feet and hands into the floor as we lift our bottoms to the sky). “I dropped my sleeping bag in a puddle. I wish I had a warm, dry sleeping bag” said the fox. George took off one of his socks. It made a very fine sleeping bag.

George hopped on (Flamingo: Standing up, lift one leg up towards your bottom and take hold of your ankle. Lift your other arm up to the sky).And he came to a big squelchy bog. Beside the bog stood a dog with a basket in his hand (Upward facing Dog: Lying on our tummies, place your hands on the floor alongside your body, next to your lower ribs. Press through your hands firmly into the floor. Straighten your arms, lifting your torso and your legs a few inches off the floor. Press down firmly through the tops of your feet. Strongly engage your leg muscles to keep your thighs lifted off the floor. / Basket: Lying on our tummies, flick our feet up towards our bottoms. We reach around with our arms and take hold of our ankles. Kicking our legs into our hands, we lift our chests up). “I need to get across for the picnic, but I keep getting stuck in the mud. I wish there was a safe, dry path” said the dog. George took off his new belt and laid it down over the bog. It made an excellent path.

George hopped on, singing to himself and dancing (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) when suddenly his trousers fell down. He felt sad and shivery. “I’ll have to go back to the shop and buy some more clothes” he decided. But when he got there it was closed! He sank down onto the doorstep and a tear ran down his nose (Malasana: Squat with your feet as close together as possible. Press your elbows against your inner knees, bringing your palms together). He felt as sad as all the animals he had met on his way home. Then out of the corner of his eye, he saw a bag with something familiar. He took a closer look and discovered his old gown and sandals! George put them on (Bend forward two times). They felt wonderfully comfortable. When he got back home, outside his front door stood all the animals he had helped (House: Standing with your legs wide, hands together above your head, making a pointy roof). They were carrying a present. George untied the ribbon. Inside was a beautiful gold paper crown and a card. Inside the card, it said “You are the kindest giant in town!”

Relaxation:

Body Relaxation:  Please lie down. Feel your body still and calm. Take a few breaths. Breathe in through your nose. Breathe out through your mouth. Now stretch your feet and relax… stretch your legs and relax… your hands, arms and relax… wrinkle your face, your nose, eyes, forehead, mouth, and relax… And finally stretch your body… Feel completely relaxed and still.

When you feel ready, you can slowly start to move your fingers and toes. Pulling your knees to your chest, give them a big hug. Rolling over to one side, lift up to a comfortable sitting position. Bring your hands together in front of your chest. Thank you for doing yoga with me today. Namaste!