A Mindfulness Practice to Help a Child Calm Down 

When a child becomes unhinged and reactive– angry, sad, incapable of listening, overly physical with a peer or sibling, he/she usually needs a tool to calm down. Physical gestures can support your child to calm down and cope with intense emotions. Remember, too, that children need emotional release. You want them to learn to release […]

Riverstone Meditation:A Mindfulness Practice for Children 

My oldest son sometimes has difficulty going to sleep. Over time, I found that he tends to get himself caught up in thoughts at bedtime. I created this meditation for him. We adapt it each time a bit– if he is afraid, or having a recurring thought, we might insert a specific reference to that […]

Teaching Children to Stop, Breath, and Listen 

Integrating a mantra or phrase, such as “stop, breath, listen” into your child’s life can support them to develop tools to navigate their own emotions in moments of conflict, confusion, or emotional overwhelm. As they develop an understanding of the three parts, you can use the phrase to redirect your younger child in challenging moments. […]

Mindful Leadership 

There is a line from Rilke’s First Elegy that I have carried with me since college–  something I  return to remind myself of the importance of letting go– of opening my heart to the moment. “Don’t you know yet? Fling the emptiness out of your arms into the spaces we breathe; perhaps the birds will […]

Discernment in Yoga practice 

At her keynote talk at the Yoga Service Conference in May, Beryl Bender Birch talked about the Yoga Sutras, yogic philosophy, and the work of doing service. I have a broad view of service, and think that we all do service — as teachers, parents, partners, caregivers, etc. So I think what she said is […]

Angry Aggressive Yoga Teachers 

I have been working on a thoughtful and academically grounded piece on yoga teaching and yoga teaching institutions– still to come. But yesterday I witnessed a conversation that made me want to jump ahead of myself and say very clearly: hey yoga practitioners, let’s stop tolerating aggressive yoga teaching!  I was preparing to teach my […]

How do we create more equitable and sensitive classroom settings? 

I have turned education scholar Sonya Nieto’s principles of learning  into questions below. If institutions (and teachers) were to use these questions they could serve as part of a practice in holding themselves accountable to a more equitable, multi-cultural, spacious, and diverse learning environment. These questions might be:   Is this approach/setting allowing learning to […]

Creating a safe classroom: Engaging reflection and response 

  There are many ways in which yoga has a place in western culture and in which this informs what yoga is. Individual people with different life experiences and backgrounds have had different experiences that they bring with them to the learning environment. These inevitably interact with all of the other cultures represented. However, if […]

Teaching: Multicultural individuals, relationship, and radical presence! 

  Learning is an active experiential process, and it springs forth from experiences, cultural contexts, beliefs, interactions, and relationships. It is not a unilateral experience, even when the structure or context for learning may imply or suggest that it is. There is mutuality in relationship. Teachers are inevitably influenced by students and students by teachers. […]

Yoga, Asana and Practice: Attending to the heart 

Six years ago I was pregnant with my first son. I had been studying Iyengar yoga intensely for several years. During the pregnancy I completed my training with Patricia Walden. Being pregnant meant that going up for certification in the Iyengar system when finished, wasn’t possible. My birth had some complications and my asana practice […]