Sunday, November 23, 2008
Take a Moment to Rest, Relax, Contemplate, Meditate and then Return to the Work
I was recently asked if there was a place in my classroom that a child might rest. I walked through my classroom the other day and made a mental list which I am now going to note below.
Children may go to the library to read a book, hug a bear (Henry is a small, stuffed bear that stays in the library along with our pet fish, Audrey)
or look at one of the photographs hanging on the wall or sit quietly.
Children may put their name cards out on work they have been concentrating on to walk quietly on the line. After a few times around, the child simply returns to his work ready to have a second go at it.
Children may sit at the Peace Table and draw designs in the sand with the small rake provided or sit quietly.
Children may use markers or colored pencils to draw a picture of their choice (however the number of sheets of paper allowed for drawing is limited to two).
The above picture is titled, "Halloween Hairdos."
They may also have snack by themselves, if no one else is wanting to have snack, or with another child.
This simple snack of cereal and milk is one of the most popular.
Children may get out the yoga cards and meditation rug so as to either do some poses or to simply rest with a scented eye pillow placed carefully on their face. Children mediating may not be disturbed by other children. No food is offered and there are no observers. Over the years, several children have actually fallen asleep while doing this. It is most often used when the class is a little loud or busy, or just before a holiday.
Collectively, all of the children and the adults play the bell game often. Here the child tries not to ring the bell as they walk across the rug from their spot to the spot of another child. The other child is given the bell by the first so that they may carry it to the next child. This is one of the Silent Activities in my album. It is very calming and centering for both the children and the adults.
The children also have 45 minutes - 1 hour outdoor, playground time everyday - weather permitting.
That looks like a pretty good list. Patti and I have often noted a child who has taken a moment to stretch, read a book, have snack or do yoga returns to their work with a renewed sense of commitment and focus.