This week’s theme was “You are filled with love”. Quite appropriate considering Valentine’s Day is next week. The poem we looked at goes like this:
Your heart is like a magic cookie jar
All the love you need is never far
So, reach inside and let that love out.
And it will come back to you without a doubt.
We discussed the importance of self-love and how it is essential for us to first love ourselves before we can love others and offer kindness to the world around us.
We then played a self-love game where each child had a turn to roll the “big dice”. Each number of the dice is associated with a sentence that needs completing e.g. “I am great because…” or “3 things I love about me are…”. Depending on which number the dice landed on, the children needed to complete the sentence and then colour in that heart on their worksheet. There were some very interesting answers like “I am great because I can do all types of lego, even the funny lego that they have at school.” But what struck me the most was how none of the children (unless prompted) mentioned a physical attribute as being something they valued about themselves. All the answers were things that the children felt they were good at doing e.g. climbing, swimming, building lego, drawing, being kind. Quite a few of the children struggled to identify something unless prompted. It made me realise that I need to do more classes on building self-love and self-esteem.
After the self-love game, we had a mini taste test and I gave the children each a “Love Hearts” sweet. As they sucked the sweet, I asked them to describe what they could taste and feel in their mouths. Many responded with sour and fizzy. I find the taste exercise a wonderful mindfulness exercise with young children because they are very enthusiastic (especially when sweets are involved) and it is a very real and tangible experience for them to drop into and be mindful. They respond well to taking a moment to stop and properly taste what is in their mouths and notice the sensations.
We then did some breath work and moved into a Loving-Kindness meditation. A Loving-Kindness meditation is one where we send love and kindness to ourselves and others. This type of meditation allows children to get in touch with their feelings. It can help guide them in sending positive and healing energy to specific people — those who are close to them who they love, but even those who have hurt them like a bully at school. Children can develop a sense of power as they gain self-love and compassion for others.
And then finally after joining hands and saying our Mindful Minis Mantra, the children each made a self-love heart collage. What exquisite results! And such happy faces while making the collage. There was so much room for creativity and the children jumped right in. They used paper, felt, stickers, tule, coloured macaroni, confetti, feathers, lolly sticks and much more.
I especially enjoyed the classes this week. Sharing the love always makes one feel warm and cosy inside. So, I encourage you all to practise some Loving-Kindness meditations next week in celebration of Valentine’s Day.
I send love now to all the people–
Everywhere on Earth.
May We All Be Safe.
May We All Be Healthy and strong.
May We All Be Happy.
May We All Be Peaceful
May We All be Kind