"Meditation HOW and WHY" - part 11: Meditation for children

in ecotrain •  last year 

Welcome to the 11th part in my series "Meditation HOW and WHY". First ten parts are available here:

PART 1: Introduction to meditation and general categories
PART 2: Mindfulness meditation
PART 3: Vipassana meditation
PART 4: 3 categories of benefits
PART 5: Guided meditation
PART 6: Breathing techniques
PART 7: Grounding meditation
PART 8: Gazing meditation
PART 9: Theravada walking meditation
PART 10: Metta meditation

After ten posts on various meditation techniques for adults, I think it is time to address our young ones too. There is not a perfect age to start meditating, the sooner you start the better, and the same goes for your kids. Teaching them how to meditate has great benefits and you will see how their general well being improves drastically with a continuing practice.

Teaching children how to meditate is giving them tools to deal with negative thoughts and behavior. It builds their self-confidence and strengthens their appreciation and respect for themselves and for others. It is bound to no religion and safe to use in any culture because it deals with child's psychology and not its faith. As a parent, try any technique before suggesting it to your child, lead by example.

"The more man meditates upon good thoughts, the better will be his world and the world at large."
Confucius


We all know how beneficial meditation is for adults. It is even more beneficial for children. If any one of us could go back in time and tell ourselves to meditate, I am sure we would do it in a heartbeat.

Meditation helps in
achieving cognitive growth.

There is a great and long list of benefits from meditation. I will try and cover those that I find most important but encourage you to do your research and learn more.

a) Focus enhancement

We live in times when a child is surrounded with technology. Children multitask all the time and much more then we did when we were their age. From school, internet, family responsibilities, social media and friends, they are always doing and thinking about more than one thing. Multitasking is a skill that should be encouraged but not all the time. Being focused and holding your concentration on only one task is fruitful as well. Solving complex problems requires our complete attention and learning kids how to do that will help them in the future.

b) Building self-esteem

Most of our insecurities are here with us today because we have gotten them in our childhood. On one or more occasions we have all felt not good enough or not deserving enough. We were bullied, embarrassed, feeling like no one understands us and just try remembering how you felt in your puberty. Meditation helps in strengthening inner stability, security and a feeling of self-love. Self-doubt and inner voices of criticism are silenced. I have been a private tutor for 15 years in math, physics, chemistry, English and computer science. I have worked with children from ages 5 to 19 and seen just how insecure they really are.

c) Stress reduction

Having a calm mind can be very helpful when adults put too much pressure on kids. Sometimes we do not even realize it but we are demanding children to be the best. Meditation reduces tensions and helps children to do better in school and in their other activities. Their academics and athletic performance are better just as their social skills. Children who meditate begin thinking clearly and rationally about their problems and learn how to deal with them better.

d) Healthy emotional development

As we grow, our fears grow right alongside with us. When we are little, those fears can be overwhelming. Children are scared of losing their parents and friends, disappointing others, being bad at their tasks, and hurting themselves. They can be frustrated and insecure. Learning how to soothe themselves, be patient and face their fears is beneficial for their development.

e) Empathy enhancement

Meditation increases compassion and kindness. It heightens empathy. When children meditate, neural pathways that allow them to see the interconnectedness between things are created. Awareness and environmental connection on multiple levels are born and children learn how to be virtuous.


As adults, we often think that meditation needs to be taught and is hard to learn. In fact, meditation in children needs only to be encouraged and guided. Kids learn how to meditate much easier than adults. It is still much more natural for them than it is for us. They have fewer mental barriers and pre-determined beliefs so there is no initial rejection.

"Don't worry that children never listen to you; worry that they are always watching you."
Robert Fulghum

Children learn by observation, they are always looking at you. No big words are needed, show them how to meditate and gently guide them in their practice. Set aside 5 minutes of your day and choose a special place for your meditation. Explain to them that this is their time to relax and be quiet and calm. Guide them in that relaxation. There is no need for longer meditations, 5 or 10 minutes is all they need. You should talk to your child after every meditation and encourage him to share his emotions and experiences.

Every child is unique.

Every child is different and every child should be approached individually when it comes to meditation. Body posture is not important, do not make your child sit in a lotus position if he does not want to. Being relaxed is the most important thing and that can be achieved by sitting, standing or lying down. Try different postures and talk to your child to see what works best for him.


There are many meditation techniques that are suitable for children. You can try any of the ones that I have written in my previous posts. However, I would suggest that you start with something simpler. There are a few simple guided meditations accompanied with special breathing techniques that will do wonders.

THE COLORFUL BALLOON

Tell your child to sit comfortably and close its eyes. Explain that he or she should imagine a balloon in his belly in his favorite color. With each deep inhale the balloon is getting bigger. A child should focus on its breath and getting that colorful balloon big. After some time, you can tell your kid that as long as the balloon is big, he will be happy and calm. Whenever he needs to calm himself and get some inner strength, he could again blow his inner balloon up. Whenever your child is sad or feeling down, this practice will help.

A CANDLE

This is very similar to the one with the balloon but here the concentration is on the exhale. Tell your child to close its eyes and imagine a candle in front of its face. With each deep and long exhale your kid should try and blow that candle out. While he or she is inhaling, encourage them to imagine their feelings about problems being lit up in the flame and then blown away with their breath. This practice is excellent for dealing with anger and disappointment.

There are several recorded guided meditations you can play for them. Try these out: Meditation for kids


Shower your child with love regularly and you will do no wrong. There is nothing your child needs that is more important than your love and time. No material gifts can replace your presence. Remeber that. With meditation, and with everything else, lead by example and show your child how to be happy, healthy and satisfied with its life.

“Children aren't coloring books. You don't get to fill them with your favorite colors.”
Khaled Hosseini

Try to accept that your child is not you and just because you like something does not mean your child has to like it. That includes meditation too. What works for you may not work for your child and that is fine. Allow your child to grow and develop its preferences. You do not want a mini copy of yourself anyway, trust me on this. You want your child to grow into an independent and happy adult.

To read about the scientific reasearch on benefits of meditation in children, follow this link:
Research Round-Up: Mindfulness in Schools

To get more information on different meditation techiques and various benefits for your child, give these a read:
3 Kid-Friendly Meditations
Teaching Children Meditation and Mindfulness.

Let me know in the comments below how old were you when you first started meditating and do you know some children who practice meditation. I am curious to learn about your experiences. Until next time...

MEDITATE DAILY
&
KEEP YOUR SMILE ON!

All images used in this post were created from those that are under CC0 license and free for personal and commercial use. You can check them out by following these links: Chris Benson, Joshua Alfaro, Patricia Prudente, David Thomaz, Jyotirmoy Gupta, Enis Yavuz& jarmoluk The meditation element from my titles is from https://pngtree.com


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Such a wonderfully synchronised blog.
I strongly believe Meditation practice should be imbibed in children at a very early age. It is very beneficial for them and very effective in their study period. They learn to balance life at a very early age and nothing will disturb them.

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Thank you for summarizing my post hihihi :) Your comments are always such a lovely thing to see 💚💚💚

meditation is really good for health.Not only for children but also for all ages.Your post is nice enough.Thank you!

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Your comment is nice enough. Thank you.

I do my own sort of meditation but always find your posts on techniques very interesting

its a great thing that you included one for children

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Thank you, I am very happy to hear you find them interesting 💚

Great post. As a professional meditation teacher it is always a delight to teach children how to meditate. Especially when their eyes light up and they see how easy and effortless it is.

I really enjoy meeting people who've sustained a regular meditation practice since childhood. There's something a little special happening inside them.

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There's something a little special happening inside them.

Oh, yes it is. Thank you for leaving your lovely comment 💚

Kids learn that "busyness" is normal as they watch their parents and other adults constantly moving. I hope my children can be content with stopping and enjoying the moment. Thanks for your thoughts are about meditation and kiddos!

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If you stop and enjoy the moment, they will too. They behave like little cute monkies when it comes to this. What monkey sees - monkey will do :) I am sure your kids are wonderful. Thank you for your lovely comment 💚

I love this post @zen-art! I used to teach at a Fine Arts School, grades 1-12, and we had implemented meditation in the elementary phys-ed curriculum. I taught high school, but the elementary teachers found such a positive influence with it all. It's so mandatory, I think, to "teach" emotional health on as many different levels as possible.

Thank you for a wonderful post!

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I am loving the fact that more and more schools around the world are teaching meditation to kids. It gives me high hopes for our future. I am glad you were a part of it. Thank you for sharing your experience and leaving such a nice comment 💚

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You are most welcome @zen-art! There is hope for your future if you look in the right places 😅

oh wow,, its the first post ive seen on meditation for kids.. and , unsurprisingly, they are SO receptive to it the younger they are.. what BETTER time to start this then when we are kids so that we can just learn to accept it as normal. and BOY do kids need to learn this these days before they get stuck on domaine hits from their mobile devices!

great post, i got your email and will respond very soon!
<3 xx

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I am glad you liked the post, this is very important subject for all adults since we are the ones guiding children and helping them find their way. Very nice of you to stop by honey, thank you, talk to you soon 💚

Congratulations! This post has been upvoted from the communal account, @minnowsupport, by zen-art 💚 from the Minnow Support Project. It's a witness project run by aggroed, ausbitbank, teamsteem, theprophet0, someguy123, neoxian, followbtcnews, and netuoso. The goal is to help Steemit grow by supporting Minnows. Please find us at the Peace, Abundance, and Liberty Network (PALnet) Discord Channel. It's a completely public and open space to all members of the Steemit community who voluntarily choose to be there.

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Though I wasn't much a kid when I first got introduced to meditation (I was 13), it has certainly helped me a lot in sleeping. I used to toss around a lot before managing to catch a sleep, but since then, the moment my head hits the pillow, I'll be out in under a minute.

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13 still counts as kid lol :) You started early and I am sure it did help you. I am glad you discovered that awesome fact how meditation helps with sleep problems 💚

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Thank you 💚💚💚

What a great post @zen-art, if only all children are taught meditation from a young age, the world would be a much much better place! Mine are grown up and fled the nest a long time ago...if only I had started meditation years ago, I would have taught my children and this would have helped them tremendously! I wish it could be taught in our schools!

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I wish that too, there is no meditation in schools in my country but there is in some countries in the world and I hope there will be everywhere one day 💚

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Neither here in South Africa!

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It is a pleasure to see you in my comment section 💚💚💚

Last year I implemented a daily routine where my son and I sit together quietly with our eyes closed and focus on happy thoughts and our breathing. I wish I would have read this post back then it would have been much easier to explain the balloon or the candle exercise. Thank you for this wonderful post!

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That candle and balloon exercise are great, give them a try when you can, I am sure your kid will love them 💚

Last year I implemented a daily routine where my son and I sit together quietly with our eyes closed and focus on happy thoughts and our breathing. I wish I would have read this post back then it would have been much easier to explain the balloon or the candle exercise. Thank you for this wonderful post!

Awesome Post! Thank you so much for posting! I appreciate your work ! I started meditating when I was a teenager! I now practice it daily. This post will help the future of humans! Thanks so much!