Tag Archives: meditation

Yobbos Do Yoga


Yesterday I shared a picture book called “Yobbos Do Yoga’ by Phillip Gwynne and Andrew Joyner  with a year 2 class.

It is the story of a little girl and her dad, who have ‘yobbos’ move in next door (for non-Australians, yobbos are usually young men, generally uncouth, prone to swearing and constant use of Aussie vernacular. A Yobbo is a heavy drinker, who places mateship above all else and lives for those wild memorable moments that are unforgettable.)

And the dad is a lover of peace and calm, and spends his day doing different yoga poses, so he is not pleased to have new neighbours. But Tubby, Ferret and King Wally Kahuna turn out to be very decent blokes,enjoying loud parties and music but including everyone and  are also willing to lend a hand and try out new things eg yoga!

yobbos do yoga 2



yobbos do yoga 1

Last year, when my colleague and I were considering what integrated units the library could support and complement during library classes, the year 2 unit of Healthy Living came up. The classroom focus is very much on healthy eating and exercising and we saw an obvious gap to us,  as there was no discussion about a healthy mind and ways to keep it healthy. So, in our limited class time with them, (45 minutes once a fortnight), I have begun to introduce the idea of a healthy mind and encouraging them to think about how something like meditation (of which yoga is a form)  can help to train the mind to be healthy and calm and positive, not re-hashing old and self- limiting ideas.

It is an area I would be interested in getting some training in as, for myself, doing a short meditation each morning before I get up, helps me set the tone for the day ahead…being one of calm and being able to observe those recurring thought patterns that don’t help me.

I have a teacher resource called ‘Meditation Capsules – A Mindfulness Program for Children’ by Janet Etty-Leal.She has done extensive work at Geelong Grammar , as well as other schools, as their ‘meditation’ consultant (2009) , pioneering well being for student’s through Positive Education. As my school has identified well-being for students and staff as being a priority for 2015 and beyond, this course and way of thinking of meditation as a life skill, fits in very well.

So I feel things aligning for me to delve deeper into teaching meditation to children.

From Mindfulness in May – myths and stereotypes around meditation


This was part of an email that arrived this morning, and with my readings and meditation I did during the weekend, I think I am getting the message that meditation is not about emptying your mind of thoughts, as that just won’t happen. If this is your aim,  you are setting yourself up to fail.

Here are Dr. Elise Bialylew‘s words, taken straight from her Mindfulness in May challenge…

There are many myths and stereotypes around meditation. One of them is that the aim of meditation is to empty your mind of thoughts.

Often when people start to meditate they notice how busy the mind is during practice and they think they are “bad” meditators.   

The fact is the mind makes thoughts.   Like the eyes see, the ears hear, the skin feels, the tongue tastes, the nose smells… THE MIND THINKS.

The average person has about 70,000 thoughts a day. That means in a ten minute meditation you’ll probably be having about 486 thoughts…  (from me – WOW – how amazing is that!!)

The purpose of practising mindfulness meditation is not to eliminate thoughts but rather to become more familiar with the nature of our minds, and become more able to unhook from thoughts rather than be hijacked by them. 

This helps us reduce the “stickiness of the mind”,( as Richie Davidson describes in his interview), that is, the tendency of the mind to cling and ruminate on particular (usually unhelpful) thoughts which then impact our emotional state.  Cultivating mindfulness supports our capacity to CHOOSE what we are paying attention to and how we are relating to our experience, both internally and in relation to the outside world. 

I really like the way Richie Davidson describes thoughts as ‘sticky’ and I have become much more aware this weekend, of just letting thoughts pass on by and not hold on to them and get caught up in going over and over the same thing.

The other thing that has been a lesson for me this weekend was that we can be feeling a bit rotten inside (in my case, anxious), but instead of me focusing on that feeling and working myself up into feeling worse because I am being a pest/inconveniencing other people etc., I can observe these feelings and realize that they will soon disappear. I did this and all the sting went out of the anxiety, for a while at least. So this is another thing for me to include and remember to practice in my daily life.


Susan Piver is another meditative practitioner, like Elise Bialylew. I listened to Elise interview her and have since joined her free project called ‘The Open Heart’ project. On her blog, there are many meditations and she emphasizes as well, to let thoughts go and don’t beat yourself up for  having them.

I feel I have some great resources now to strongly continue my journey into the practice of meditation. It is soooo worth it!



Mindfulness and Meditation in the primary classroom


This is something I am really interested for me and the students – I wonder what effect it would have if your class practiced how to be mindful on a daily basis?

I have some resources to share, some I am re-sharing from a colleague at school, who shared them with the whole staff this week. (thanks Matt!)

Check them out if you are willing to try something new or revisit this way of being……

smiling minds

Smiling Minds –    What is Smiling Mind? Smiling Mind is modern meditation for young people. It is a unique web and App-based program, designed to help bring balance to young lives.


magical adventures             enchanted med2               positive penguins              super stretch

Magical Adventures  –  $2.99  – meditation ideally suited to 4-7 year olds.

Enchanted Meditations for kids 1 – $2.99 – 4 enchanted audio tracks – Jellyfish relaxation; an underwater dolphin ride; rainbow relaxation; the magic rainbow – 3-9 year olds

Positive Penguins – Free – helps children to understand how their feeling arise and to challenge negative feelings before they get out of control.

SuperStretch – Free –  yoga app for kids, the adventure of Super Stretch. In a story format with Super Stretch introducing you to his friends and their yoga poses.

Guided Meditation pdfs



Namaste to you all.