Maybe you’re wondering: “Why should I teach my child mindfulness and meditation?” Or even thinking: “Where do I begin teaching my child mindfulness?"
Maybe you’re wondering: “Why should I teach my child mindfulness and meditation?” Or even thinking: “Where do I begin teaching my child mindfulness and meditation?”
Don’t worry! We’ve got you covered with our seven tips to help you understand the benefits and dive into teaching you little ones these life-long skills.
1. Understand the importance of mindfulness and meditation.
So, why should you teach your child mindfulness in the early years? The answer is simple – it helps them to develop a strong foundation for emotional wellbeing, self-awareness and resilience. We often hear from parents: “I wish I’d had Wee Seeds when my kids were young,” or even “I wish I’d learnt mindfulness when I was young!” By teaching our little ones wellbeing skills in the early years, we’re giving them tools to navigate life’s challenges more effectively and become more balanced humans.
2. Start with simple breathing exercises.
So you’ve decided to get started! Yah! Simple breathing exercises are a perfect introduction to mindfulness and meditation for many young children. At Wee Seeds, we believe the breath is the easiest place to start. Deep belly breaths are an easy way to help your child understand the power of mindfulness, as it easily kickstarts the calming parts of the brain and body. You can teach your child to take deep slow breaths, inhaling through their nose and exhaling through their mouth. Making it more fun, like pretending it’s a balloon or a bubble is good (or you could use Wee Seeds breathing exercises, with our ready-made videos to follow).
3. Lead by example
Children learn best by watching their parents and carers, so practising mindfulness and meditation yourself will show them the benefits. Take a few minutes each day to practise deep breathing, taking a pause in your day, or simply being present in the moment.
4. Wait, what is mindfulness?
So mindfulness is a technique you can learn which involves noticing what's happening in the present moment, without judgement. You might take notice and be aware of your mind, body or surroundings. It’s proven to reduce stress, anxiety, worry, and helps with focus, better sleep, and a more positive outlook on life. Teaching these skills in the early years helps set your child up to understand their emotions, helping with focus, readiness to learn, and sleep. To name but just a few benefits!
5. Practice gratitude together
Gratitude is a powerful element of mindfulness. Teaching your child to appreciate small, good things in their lives fosters a positive mindset. Doing it together – for example, around the dinner table – strengthens your bond as a family of mindfulness. Teach your child to appreciate the good things in their lives by making it a daily ritual.
6. Making mindful moments part of your family’s daily routine.
Consistency is key – but don’t worry, we’re not suggesting adding another thing to your To Do List. Just setting aside a few minutes a day for a mindful moment, such as deep breathing, or even just quiet time drawing, is key. You can use Wee Seeds to help bring mindful moments to your day, with our fun, easy audio and video meditations, specifically designed for early years children.
7. Make it fun!
Remember most of all that children love fun! Your child might not take to practising deep breathing unless you help make it fun for them. You might need to be patient and come back to these activities repeatedly until they can feel a benefit. Be patient. Keep everything light-hearted and fun. We believe having fun while learning is the key to teaching them these important life-long skills
Teaching wellbeing in the early years is a key life-skill: one that’s as important as teaching them to read and write. In the UK today, one in six children live with a mental health condition. At Wee Seeds, we believe prevention is better than cure. Helping your child develop valuable life skills that will serve them well into adulthood is key. So, start today with these seven tips – and plant the seeds of positive mental health early.
If you’d like to get fun and easy mindfulness exercises designed for young children, try our Mini-Minds Wellbeing Toolbox for free for 5 days.