Lindsay Bayer

Children's Author, Child/Family Yoga Instructor, Curriculum Developer, Education Consultant

Zoo Yoga Recap and the Yoga & Story Time "Caring Journal"

Thanks to all the families that attended our July Yoga & Story Time classes all about the ZOO!  We focused a lot on moving like zoo animals (of course, it’s a zoo yoga class, right?!), but we also focused a lot on compassion. 

The book we read was A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip and Erin Stead.  Amos goes to the city zoo on the 6am bus every morning to care for his animal friends.  But when Amos is sick, the tables turn and it’s the animals’ turn to care for him.  I love this book because of its beautiful illustrations (illustrator Erin Stead received a Caldecott Medal for this book) and its beautiful message: that true friends take care of each other.

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In class we practiced breathing deeply like birds and lions and learned various yoga poses inspired by our story, including:

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  • Rhinoceros (Mountain Pose with hands at heart center – the rhino horn – taking the arms slowly up overhead)
  • Sitting with a Penguin (Chair Pose)
  • Tea at the Table (Table Pose) while we tried balancing actual cups and plates on our backs and bellies

But one of my favorite parts of this class was having each child and adult fill out a journal page where they jotted down ways to care for themselves and ways to care for others.  Families shared some AWESOME ideas, including:

I can show others I care by:

  • Helping friends when they are struggling
  • Giving hugs
  • Giving someone a Band-Aid
  • Taking someone breakfast when they are sick
  • Giving someone a compliment
  • Being kind

I can care for myself by:

  • Eating healthy foods
  • Getting lots of rest
  • Dressing myself
  • Taking deep breaths
  • Drinking water
  • Doing yoga

I love these responses because they reinforce some of the main objectives of all Yoga & Story Time classes: that children will learn the importance of self-care (through active play, deep breathing, and relaxation) and how to care for their families and caregivers (through activities that promote bonding, cooperation, and trust). 

All of the responses we received in our classes will be compiled in a “Caring Journal” that will travel with me to all future Yoga & Story Time classes.  The next time you come to class, take a look at the journal and discuss the different ways your child can show care and compassion for themselves and others.

You can view the “Caring Journal” at our next Yoga & Story Time sessions in August, which are all about SUPERHEROS!  We will learn a yoga sequence that will help us have super strength, super balance, and super power!  Click on the sessions below to get more information and register!

Sat. Aug. 26 in Pekin at 1pm

Mon. Aug. 28 in Galesburg at 10am

Mon. Aug. 28 in Galesburg at 5:30pm