Articles and Practices: Tools and Resources

Working with Teens: Creating Engaging Mindfulness Experiences for Adolescents

As a high school teacher in the Bronx for 14 years I got to meet and deeply know a lot of teens. Having those relationships taught me a lot about what makes adolescents tick. I saw that the way adults view teens impacts the way teens see themselves, and ultimately the lives they think they… Read more »

This Moment is Your Life (and so is This One). A New Resource by Mariam Gates

When new books to share mindfulness and yoga with teens are released, we typically await them eagerly, as this can be a hard population to reach and good resources are scarce. Mariam Gates new offering, This Moment is Your Life (and so is This One), exceeds all of our expectations and provides teens and tweens with a… Read more »

Body of Emotions: A Mindfulness Practice to Explore Emotions with Teens

Neuroscience research shows that the only way we can change the way we feel is by becoming aware of our inner experience and learning to befriend what is going inside ourselves. ~ Bessel A. van der Kolk The Body Keeps the Score: Brain, Mind, and Body in the Healing of Trauma One of my favorite… Read more »

Holiday Gifts for Little Yogis

My Top 10 – Holiday Little Yogi Gifts The most important gift for any child is your attention and presence.  But if you happen to be looking for a gift for the special yogi or yogini in your life then below is a list of just a few or our favorite yoga gifts for kids.  We included the… Read more »

Spread the Love: Great Books to Cultivate Gratitude for Children of All Ages

Research from the Greater Good Science Center tells us that gratitude actually blocks toxic emotions even as it allows us to celebrate the present. Additionally, its been proven that grateful people are more stress-resistant and have a higher sense of self-worth. How can we help kids be happy with what they already have and cultivate an attitude… Read more »

Finding Your Anchor: 3 Creative Ways to Explore Mindful Breathing with Your Students

Anchor breath is one of my favorite practices to teach my students. Anchor  breath is the practice of using your breath to help focus your mind on one point. The instructions are to place your hand where you most feel the breath in your body.  I offer three options: on your belly, on your chest,… Read more »

The Peace Corner: An Essential Classroom Resource

The peace corner is a powerful and touching space in the classroom that supports self regulation.  It’s private. It’s structured. It includes choice. It’s an experiment. It’s inviting. It’s a movement toward independence onto the mat (or the desk or the rug spot) and ultimately into everyday life. It’s called the “peace corner” because there… Read more »

Managing Frustration – Empower Tools for Children

Life comes with a lot of challenges. Sometimes these challenges can lead to frustration. I find one of my most effective ways to empower the children I work with is to give them tools that help them navigate big emotional experiences, like frustration. What triggers frustration can be different for each individual. Some examples of triggers… Read more »

The Upside of Stress: Book Recommendation

LFY founder Jennifer Cohen Harper was recently interviewed by Yoga City NY for their must read book club series. Learn why Jenn recommends Kelly McGonigal's newest book, The Upside of Stress, and how it relates to the children we work with.  “I particularly loved reading about how the body works to bring us together during stress.… Read more »

Ha Kriya: A breathwork exercise

Check out one of my favorite ways to empower the children I work with. This segment will show you how to prepare a child for challenging tasks using our most powerful tool: breath. Thank you PESI for creating this video. If you'd like to learn more activities like this, check out the short WEBINARS we have available… Read more »

Kids Yoga, Music and the Arts: “I Am” by Lianne Bassin

The creative process is a funny thing; I’ve always been fascinated with how and when inspiration strikes. Some songs that I wrote for Breathe In took so much time, so much writing and rewriting. And yet other ones hit me immediately, and it seemed like I finished them in just ten minutes.   “I Am,”… Read more »

Six Classroom Management Strategies to Live & Breathe By

A few years ago I decided to take on a position as a full-time Yoga Specialist at a charter school. I was ecstatic about the groundbreaking experience that lay ahead. It is also fair to say that I was totally naïve and in over my head regarding the enormous tasks that lay ahead: Design a year-long yoga… Read more »

So What Is It That First Year Teachers Need To Know?

This year as an adjunct lecturer at Hunter College’s Department of Curriculum and Teaching I’m getting the opportunity to work with a lot of first year teachers and that’s made me think a lot about what supports good teaching. At Hunter College I’m working with dance, theatre, and music first year teachers.  These are Lincoln… Read more »

Beginning with Intention by Kelli Love

As I explore my intentions for the beginning of another school year, I take a look at what I want for my teaching practice and turn to vital topics such as embodied teaching and self-care.  My presence in the classroom is what I know to matter most, and yet the only way for me to… Read more »

Practice: Progressive Muscle Relaxation

Progressive muscle relaxations are some of our favorite practices to teach students and teachers, teaching you how to relax your muscles through a two step process. First, you systematically tense particular muscle groups in your body, such as your neck and shoulders. Next, you release the tension and notice how your muscles feel when you… Read more »

Kids Yoga, Music and the Arts: Chirp Chirp – It’s Spring!

I love having my hands in dirt.  Something about its texture, the way it falls right through my fingertips and its vibrant, earthy smell makes me want to pause and take a deep breath.  I remember planting lima beans with my kindergarten students a few years ago on a beautiful Spring morning. Each child filled… Read more »

Working with Autism in Your Yoga Class – 5 Helpful Resources

Each month we will take an inquiry or subject (proposed by you) and offer direction and feedback.  Feel free to write in with your concerns or questions and we will answer and provide all the advice we can offer. —————————- Increasingly there has become more interest regarding yoga and autism.  If you are a parent… Read more »

Wishing Tree Reflection – Music, Yoga & Mindfulness

Each month Lianne will be writing a reflection on each one of her songs on her soon to be released album, “Breathe In”.  Her first song and reflection is called “Wishing Tree” and we hope you enjoy this as much as we do.…When you wish upon a star, Makes no difference who you are. Anything your heart… Read more »

Cultivating JOY While You Teach

As we embark on the holiday season, I am realizing more and more that joy is an essential quality of life that needs to be present when I teach. Oftentimes, joy gets knocked down the totem pole of qualities of teaching, in both traditional and non-traditional classrooms, and many people think feeling joy simply means… Read more »

Let It Go: The Importance of Reflective Teaching

Did you ever have a moment teaching where you say something or do something that in retrospect was not supportive to your students? Yes, is the answer, no matter who you are (almost). Making mistakes is part of the nature of this work, and when you make a mistake or when you have a bad… Read more »

Layers of Sound

This mindful listening practice asks your children and students to explore what they can hear around them in an intentional way.  Our hearing is so sensitive.  All of the sounds around us are competing for our attention all of the time.  Learning to attune our hearing to the sounds that are most important at the moment… Read more »

5 Tips to Reduce Anxiety

“Give It A Try”  So simple yet so full of power – yet so scary for some of us.   This morning I was fortunate enough to attend a conference at our local Board of Education for my son.  This was specifically for Special Needs Parents but one of the breakout sessions I attended was on Anxiety and… Read more »

Caring Feelings: Practicing Kindness and Compassion for Children

The Caring Feelings activity is a child-friendly version of a Loving Kindness practice, which is a type of meditation that can help your child develop compassion, contentment, and a feeling of well-being. In a traditional adult Loving Kindness practice, kind thoughts would be sent to the self, to people close to you, to people you… Read more »

Power Down: Robot Relaxation for Kids

With the increase of ADHD, behavioral disorders, child stress and anxiety, relaxation is becoming more and more important for children of all ages. With so much going on in their lives, children need to find time to simply unwind, put their feet up, and have some quiet reflective time where nothing is being asked of… Read more »

Mindfulness for Kids – A 5 Second Practice

Well-Wishes Creating a practice takes time for all of us and for children it’s no different.   In our home I like to think of it as building a house.  First and foremost we have to build a foundation.  If there isn’t a strong base with anything we may be setting ourselves up for failure.   Nothing… Read more »

The School Yoga Project and Social Emotional Learning: Research

CLICK HERE FOR ENLARGED VERSION OF RESEARCH POSTER   Database Coding and Interpretation:  April 20, 2014, Colin Pearsall Social emotional learning (SEL) theory posits that a child’s capacity for self-understanding and self-regulation is a gateway to achieving personal goals and participating in the community.  This research takes the reporting of SYP yoga teachers and interprets… Read more »

Chair Yoga Exercises for the Feet and Toes

by Mayuri Gonzalez, The School Yoga Project Director and Little Flower Yoga Teacher Trainer   Chair yoga is beneficial for teachers to practice during their long stretches of desk-time and for students, who spend hours sitting in their desks without many opportunities for physical activity breaks. Practicing yoga in the chair is a simple way… Read more »

How to Start and Maintain an At-Home Yoga Practice

    My yoga practice really deepened and developed when I started to practice at home by myself.  When you give yourself the opportunity to practice alone with only your inner guidance leading your movement (no online classes or DVDs!), it can open up a new opportunity for healing.  There is much value in practicing… Read more »

Help Your Child Find Their Own Strengths (I Am So Strong – A Meditation for Kids)

This is a powerful form of meditation that can help kids learn to focus rather easily.  There are various ways that you could fit this into a fun yoga class or add to a theme within a sequence of poses but I’d like to begin by making it as simple as possible. For me, I find that the best atribute… Read more »

10 Easy and Fun Ideas to Help Your Kids Relax!

Summer is here everybody and I have 2 questions for you.   1.  Who is ready to run all day and night to keep up with the kids?    2.  And who is ready to become a little wiser in helping them learn how to wind down and relax?   I am fully inspired to write… Read more »