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Mindful : August 2013
Child’s Play If it feels like a lesson, children won’t be interested. If it’s a game, they’ll love it. That’s what Alfred James says about mindfulness for kids. The author of Pocket Mindfulness and its accompanying blog suggests that parents come up with mind- fulness exercises they and their children can do together. It’s about finding ways to be truly present with your children, rather than mutually distracted. Here are a few of his ideas: • Out on a windy day, maybe at the beach? Bust your kids out of quiet time and roar into the wind. James says it’s about celebrating our interconnection with nature. (And yelling just feels good.) • We know kids like to use magnifying glasses to turn the sun’s rays into laser beams of destruction. They might be surprised to learn they can also be used to obser ve interesting things. Look at ants. See how much they can carr y. How they navigate giant obstacles. How they work as a team. (Just make sure not to fry them.) • Choose a plant—outdoors or indoors— and take time to notice its grow th. You can record the changes by taking photos and comparing them. What could be better than sharing a little aha moment with a child? ● SAVOR Find an orange or a tangerine, something nice and juicy. Peel. Eat. Yummm. Find more on Twitter @mindinterrupter OVERHEARD “We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always know this and am happy I lived long enough to find out.” Roger Ebert, film critic and journalist, 1943-2013 now 18 mindful August 2013 PHOTOGRAPH©ISTOCKPHOTO.COM/POLLYROSE