We hear it all the time. Be mindful. Pay attention to the moment you are in and enjoy how you feel. Just slow down. Enjoy your food. Connect with nature and the people you are with. Breathe. And put down the damn phone.
We all struggle with this. I mean, in theory it seems easy to just stop and pay attention.
But in reality it’s not that simple. We can’t be mindful all the time or we’d never get things done. But we can practice this important skill, and that’s what it is really, when it matters most. But we don’t have to join the monastery to do it. Being a monk sounds blissful in the midst of chaos but it doesn’t pay the bills.
So how can we practice mindfulness with kids?
Practicing mindfulness is probably the most important thing we can do to help our kids connect to their feelings. Had I been taught this when I was a child I would have been happier, more confident and had a stronger sense of who I was.
As parents we can either embrace the chaos that comes with raising our kids or we can fight it kicking and screaming. And while the latter seems to be my default lately I know that when I reconnect with myself and with him, when I stop and breathe, I can sink in to the moments that are most meaningful.
One way I am teaching my kiddo to be more mindful is to pay attention to his environment. He’s so distracted by everything it isn’t long before he bumps into something or falls over as he’s running backwards. And while he’s not seriously injured himself yet (knock on wood) I worry about him.
So when things get out of hand we go to the woods. We might go on a Geocaching treasure hunt or look for golf balls in the forest next to a golf course. This seems to help him and us stay grounded. It’s a wonderful way to reconnect to ourselves and the world around us but with the time change it’s going to get dark much earlier. And then there’s the rain. And with that comes more time spent inside.
Saturday mornings tend to be pretty lazy around our house. We sleep in a bit, or rather the Hubs and I take turns catching up on sleep, and OLM loves to watch programs on TV if he’s not playing with the kids next door. There are a handful of shows that we think are great for him as they are mostly educational but he sits in front of the TV like a zombie. I’m not sure how much education comes out of that state of mind.
So when I heard about a brand new show on CBC that teaches mindfulness to kids, I was all over it.
Scout & The Gumboot Kids
Scout & The Gumboot Kids acts as a bridge between the family room and the outdoors, offering families simple ideas on how to reconnect with their senses, and each other, by using mindfulness practices as a means of fostering curiosity and a sense of connection with nature. The show’s curriculum was developed with a leading expert in mindfulness, Molly Lawlor, and was also endorsed by the David Suzuki Foundation.
This show airs every weekday morning at 9.55am and is four minutes long. Watch the trailer here.
What did you think about the trailer? Pretty cute, right? Here’s something else to get you into the spirit of this show. A giveaway!
Win the Scout & the Gumboot Kids Prize Pack!
The prize pack includes:
- A “Scout & The Gumboot Kids” small canvas tote bag
- A “Take Me Outside” CD by Jessie Farrell (original music from the series!)
- A magnifying glass
- Field Notebook & pencil
This contest ends on November 17th at midnight and is open to Canadian residents only. In order to qualify for this contest you must complete the entire entry form above.
I was not compensated for this post but I was given the same prize pack that one lucky reader will win.
I can’t wait to hear why you think mindfulness is an important skill to teach your kids!