Mini Me Yoga Testimonial

Testimonial from a 2 Hour Workshop in Burlington I taught a few months ago

Thank you again for teaching us today Heather!!

Today’s teachings will compliment our Montessori Peace Education which encompasses Grace and Courtesy.

Emotions and Mindfulness are brought up daily in our learning and today’s Mini Me Yoga workshop empowers me even more to helping and guiding my little friends to calmly embrace their feelings.

Enjoy the rest of the the weekend! ❤

Social-Emotional Tools for Adoptive Parents

I am VERY new the parenting scene, although I was a Nanny for many years and Special Education Teacher too. Even having an MEd didn’t prepare me. I know kids, but being a parent has been an adjustment.

Nothing prepared me for co-parenting two gorgeous little souls who were adopted.

I’ve learned a whole new language and awareness and sensitivity to things I had no concept of before.

One thing I do know, is that despite the fact that most children do, at times deal with anxiety, adopted children have a tremendous amount of anxiety in their lives.

As an Ambassador to #MiniMeYoga I realized my tool chest is a perfect fit for my new family! I have been using our tools with our kids with really positive success. As you know well, every child is different and their needs are different- as is the speed at which they heal anxiety.

Please check out the link and let me know how I can help! I’d love for you to be doing our Yoga and breathing with your kids.

/Mini Me Yoga

Love and Light to you and your little ones,

Heather McCrae, MEd

Kids, Stress, and Yoga

Why do kids need Yoga other than the fact that it’s fun and good for you like broccoli ?

One of the foundational components that I focus on when teaching kids Yoga, is emotional intelligence. If children aren’t aware of what they are feeling, or why, and if we don’t give them tools to deal with their feelings appropriately, we are in danger of creating a society of unconscious bullies who prey on those who are more sensitive than they are-more aware of what they are feeling.

In my classes, a part of what I teach is heart-opening and deep belly breathing. This is important for so many reasons!

Do you realize how much of your day you spend breathing straight from your lungs with very quick and shallow breaths? This is actually “fight or flight breathing” and you don’t even know you are doing it! Your body is in “pounce” position-poised for a fight. Can you imagine how this effects your interactions with others?

  • picking fights
  • misunderstandings
  • paranoia
  • fear-based thinking

We have so many unconscious habits as children  that we have brought forward into our adult lives that are not helpful!

When we do the ohm at the beginning of our class, it is an invitation to centre ourselves and gather ourselves together consciously. When we do the ohn three times, we are connecting ourselves to the world around us, consciously. This is something that both children and adults can do each morning to start their day by remembering that we are all in this together, and there is nothing to fear.

Deep belly breathing is an antidote to stress and the “fight or flight” response. When we consciously take a deep belly breath, we are sinking our being deeper into our bodies and grounding ourselves in our current reality. In other words, we are getting out of our heads and out of our own way!

If children learn from an early age to breathe deeply and anchor their hearts, they are far less likely to live in fear all the time, waiting to be attacked or pick a fight because they are afraid. Just like with martial arts, this is a discipline that encourages self-inquiry and self-awareness.

As a survivor of child abuse, I know first-hand how mindfulness practices change your thinking and assist you in dealing with life on life’s terms-fully present.

Our kids face all kinds of stressors that we didn’t-media alone is a big one. Children are bombarded by noise both visually and audibly. Mindfulness practices are a perfect tool for allowing a moment of reflection between stimulus and response, cause and effect, push and pull.

We all need a minute.

 

Love and Light,

 

 

Heather M. McCrae, MEd

Consultant and Ambassador to Canada

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Guest Blogger Kate Bartram-Brown

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Do kids get enough opportunity to make choices ?

I have found that through kids yoga, we are able to listen to what a child wants. This in itself is one of the most empowering gifts we can give to a child as adults!
You see, children need to be able to make decisions, but when do they get to do this?
Most children are told what to wear, what to eat, how to eat, what school they will go to. What books they will read, and who they socialize with, is already determined by our set of friends or which school they go to.
Our children are already being what is called “conditioned” from a very early age. In psychology, this is talked about a lot and how it affects a child’s mental and emotional well-being not only as a child but also as a grownup.
Some children around the world are encouraged to do what we call critical thinking but not all societies that I have seen support this.
Once I came across two children that when asked if they would like to draw a picture  of anything they would like, cried, as they felt so uncomfortable in making the decision in what to draw. They had no idea what to draw, as their entire lives (aged 4 and aged 6) they had been told what to do and how to do it.
To think and create for themselves was so far beyond their comfort zone it caused them distress.
So what does all that have to do with kids yoga? Well in kids yoga, (Mini Me Yoga Program)  children are encouraged to select their own cards/poses, to do the poses as they see them, be the leader of the game, they are in control of managing their emotions through breathing.
In the MMY 15 minute program, I made sure that we offered the child a chance to create their own yoga flow, select their own music if they so choose, pick their own cards, select which breathing exercise they wish to do, choose who they want to send love out to, which people, which animals and which places around the world. From here, their minds are opened to the endless possibilities that exist within each section and we start to see the children grow with confidence in their choices.
I do get it though, as it’s easier to allow children to make choices through kids yoga for sure, instead of asking them each day what they want to eat, wear, whether they want to go to school, whether they want to go to after school club that day or not, if they want to do maths or not .. I get it-it doesn’t fit into our system and we know that in life we need to follow some rules.. However the lack of opportunity a young child has to make choices has a direct effect on how they make choices when they are growing up.
But luckily we can do something about this! Through a very simple 15 minute program each day or indeed a local kids yoga class we can help children to feel confident and comfortable in making choices, decisions and experiencing the consequences of those decisions.
Did it make me feel happy? Did I fall over? Do I need to try harder at that next time? And so on.
We can give children the opportunity to make a choice that affects their daily life, and in doing this we support them taking responsibility for their own well-being and life as they grow.
Happy Yoga for everyone!

 

Peace, Love & Sparkly Diamonds,

Kate Bartram Brown

Founder – Mini Me Yoga

Mini Me Yoga

Mini Me Yoga as a Classroom Management Tool

Mini Me Yoga as a Classroom Management Tool

 

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I made a promise to myself when I was trained as a Mini Me Yoga Ambassador, that I would work tirelessly to make sure Mini Me Yoga was in every school and daycare in Canada. I am the Ambassador for Mini Me Yoga Canada.

I work with Kate Bartram-Brown, who founded Mini Me in the UK in 2014. I wanted specifically to train Educators and give them an effective and positive Classroom Management tool.

Mini Me Yoga is taught in over 20 countries around the world! I share Kate’s passion to bring Joy to children, and I immediately saw during my Ambassador training that this program is a positive classroom management tool that every teacher of younger children can use!

No previous experience with Yoga  is required.

Mini-Me Yoga is a Heart-Centered, playful approach that teaches children breathing techniques and yoga postures. We foster a child’s innate curiosity to explore yoga without rigid expectations, leaving them free to fall in love with deep belly breathing, heart-centered living, and freedom of movement, relaxation and meditation.

In this 2-hour Mini Me Yoga workshop, parents, grandparents, childcare providers and teachers learn simple techniques for introducing 15 minutes a day of yoga and positive thinking to preschool and elementary-aged children using games and exercises designed to make it fun and engaging.

 

Each participant receives:

Complete set of 14 Magick Yoga Cards 
Online training for additional resource
Mini Me Tote Bag 
Certificate of Completion                                                                                                                                                               Online access to the Mini Me Yoga website with additional resources for Facilitators

 

You learn The Mini Way

  • Breathing
    • Meditation
    • Making energy water
    • Why we do kids yoga
    • Plus, at least 14 yoga poses

 

It’s action-packed and full of information as well as practical tools.

 

Everyone leaves with what they need to get started right away.

 

I stress to all my Facilitators when we start the training that you do not have to be proficient in Yoga or even have your own Yoga practice-all you need is an open mind and an open Heart.

 

 

Why this is effective in the classroom:

 

  • Starting the day with the 15 minute Program, puts everyone in positive and relaxed mindset-including Educators!
  • Elements of the program are so easy and practical to use to get the children’s attention
  • Whenever you find yourself with a last-minute schedule change, or in need of a transitional activity, Mini Me is perfect for that
  • When you are trained, you receive a deck of Magick Yoga cards and games to play with the children using the cards! These are perfect activities for indoor recess or for transitions

 

 

 

 

Mindfulness, Mini Me Yoga, and Body Image

As a Culture, we have a real opportunity to make changes from the ground up, and that means starting with our children. Countless studies have shown that Meditation has positive effects on both the brain and the whole body’s ability to deal with stress. This isn’t even bringing Spirituality into the conversation. Meditation is good for you. I am both the Mini Me Yoga Ambassador for Canada and a Certified Facilitator of The Max Meditation System TM. 

I have stated in all the information I give to potential clients, that our program is a gentle, heart-centered program that is not rigid. We don’t want or need the kids to do “Perfect Yoga”. We want them to be able to enjoy it and feel safe exploring! For many children, Mini Me Yoga is their first experience with Yoga and we want them to enjoy it so the principles of deep belly breathing, relaxation and meditation stay with them! 

I fell in Love with Mini Me Yoga when I first attended my Facilitator Training. I was relaxed, happy and open. I have giggled so many times, when adults have told me the same thing when I’ve taught Facilitator Classes.  I’ve had requests for Adult Mini Me Yoga Classes! We have a Yoga portion, but also a Meditation portion too. Giving children a chance to gently connect to their bodies and souls is so important!

The reason our program isn’t rigid is that we are in the Love Business. We want our children breathing, and relaxing into their Hearts and bodies without fear, shame or guilt.  We want the children loving and accepting themselves, just as they are when they come to class.

As you may see from my profile picture, I don’t have a “standard yoga body”-whatever that means. I am short and curvy, like many women and girls. Kate Bartram-Brown, our founder, is committed to Mini Me Yoga as a safe space for everyone to come and be exactly as they are, and know they are enough. I am on the same page as my good friend, Kate! 

My Mission for Mini Me Yoga in Canada is the same as it is in 23 other countries around the world. We want kids relaxed, happy, joyful and loving themselves!

We also want the adults who attend Facilitator and Ambassador Training to know they are enough and just the right size, shape, and kind to teach Mini Me. What matters to us is that you are a Heart-Centered person. I will not train anyone who isn’t. 

 

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