When you think about someone mediating, or someone who mediates regularly, you probably don’t picture a child, do you? But meditation for kids is not unheard of, and it has considerable meditation benefits like calmer mood, increased mindfulness and the foundation for a strong meditation practice (for those who chose to continue to continue into adulthood).
There are even programs now that facilitate mediation for kids by teaching directly, or perhaps more importantly by teaching educators and parents how to practice and teach meditation. For some, meditation is very much a religious practice, but there are mindfulness programs in the U.S. that teach mindfulness exercises and meditation for kids and adults that’s secular, and can conceivably be adopted by a believer of any or no religion.
Mindfulness is simply a state of being, an increased awareness of the self and the world. This state is not the exclusive property of adults, which is why meditation for kids is so great. By understanding that basic meditation practice is totally appropriate meditation for kids (even if it doesn’t come easily), we realize that kids can learn mindfulness from a young age, and have an accessible way to practice every day.
One of the best things about meditation for kids is that it can reduce anxiety and improve coping skills, and it can even help kids get better at empathizing with others. That’s one of the paradoxical effects of meditation, the way it can affect others even though it seem simply to turn attention onto the self. If meditation for kids sounds like an interesting idea, why not look into it? You will find that there are online programs, and may be local courses as well.