Meditation and other mindfulness practices are more popular than ever, especially for children. Studies have shown that teaching kids mindfulness practices can cultivate students’ attentiveness, respect for themselves and others, self-control, and empathy, all while reducing stress, hyperactive behavior, ADHD symptoms, and depression.
Giving kids the tools to help them fend off negative thoughts and behaviors, build self-confidence, focus, and treat others and themselves with respect and appreciation is a gift and skill that they will have for the rest of their lives. This grants children resources necessary to make more positive life decisions.
Our Guided Meditation is usually a group activity of mind-body intervention by which a trained practitioner helps participants to evoke and generate mental images that simulate or recreate sensory perception. This guidance is essentially an audible or visual narration that paints a vivid picture for participants. Guided meditation brings a visual component to a very simple deep breathing exercise. We engage in a practice called “The Balloon” or “Follow The Leader”. Fun and very effective for children.
Benefits of Meditation
- Building skills to manage your stress
- Increasing self-awareness
- Focusing on the present
- Reducing negative emotions
- Increasing imagination and creativity
- Increasing patience and tolerance
- Lowering resting heart rate
- Lowering resting blood pressure
- Improving sleep quality
Reiki is a Japanese form of energy healing, a type of alternative medicine that focuses on rebalancing energy. Reiki practitioners use a technique called palm healing or hands-on healing through which “universal energy” is transferred through the palms of the practitioner to the patient in order to encourage emotional or physical healing.
- Helps in stress reduction and promotes relaxation while providing more comfort and peace.
- Reduces depression and anxiety by affecting change in mood.
- Increases mobility.
- Helps bring balance.
- Speeds up the healing process.
- Boosts the immune system.
- Enables emotional, psychical, mental and spiritual growth. Enhances your capability to love, to empathize as it enables you to connect more deeply with people.
- Heals and strengthens relationships.
- Helps clients with the grieving process during loss or trauma.
- Promotes inner peace, harmony, and clarity.
- Helps increase energy and promotes creativity.
- Helps to improve concentration.
- Reiki is good for everyone. Adults, kids, toddlers, pets, plants, our environment, and situations.
- Reiki grants children/ individuals an opportunity to take part in their healing when participating in self-treatments; increases confidence, autonomy- self-advocacy, focus,
Reiki is safe, gentle, and non-intrusive and is becoming an accepted presence in hospitals and clinics today perhaps due to the healing approach being non-traumatic and easily integrated with conventional therapies.
Reiki has been helpful in the treatment of ADD/ADHD, inattentiveness, irritability, emotional issues, hyperactivity, and defiance.
Reiki as a form of therapy complements existing medical treatments.
Crystal healing is a holistic, non-invasive, vibrational energy-based system of healing. Crystals stones are different combinations of minerals that help purify, balance and realign. Crystal stones have been used since ancient times for protection, healing, as talismans of luck, etc.
Our physical beings and all natural objects possess an energy field (or aura) and energetic vibration. This can be affected by the environment and vibrations of other people around us. It can also affect our physical health. This healing modality uses precisely placed crystals either on and/or around the physical body. Crystals may also be laid in precise geometric patterns (grids) within the environment.
Crystals work by absorbing, focusing, directing, detoxifying, shifting, and diffusing energy as they interact with the electromagnetic forces and subtle vibrations within the body or environmental energy field. Individual crystals are also known to have their own special energies that can align and exert influence in various areas of your life.
It is always very interesting to see which crystals children gravitate toward, once you understand the benefits and work of each stone. It can be informative of some of their needs.
Crystal Healing Benefits
- Releases blocked energy
- Heals Chakras
- Builds skills to manage stress
- Increases self-awareness
- Reduces negative emotions
- Aura transformation
- Increases feelings of tranquility
- Physical healing
- Mental wellbeing
- Transmutes energy
- … and much more
A Sound Bath is a deeply-immersive, full-body listening experience that intentionally uses sound to invite gentle yet powerful therapeutic and restorative nurturing of the mind and body. Sound healing is an ancient healing technique that uses tonal frequencies to bring the body into a state of vibrational balance and harmony.
During a sound bath, the brainwave state is altered from a normal waking state (beta) to a relaxed state (alpha), dreamlike state (theta), and even a restorative state (delta). As the mind and body relax, the heart rate and blood pressure decrease and breathing becomes deeper.
It also heals on the mental and emotional levels. Sound healing helps reduce stress, anxiety, and depression. It balances and clears the mind, and leads to well-being, calm, and happiness.
Sessions involve ‘bathing,’ in meditative sounds created by different instruments, including crystal bowls, gongs, tuning forks, chimes, drums, the voice and many more.
Sound baths are a powerful healing modality because sound travels extremely well through liquid, and the human body is made up of 60-70% water. Vibrations and energies move through and charge the water within us, helping to liberate and heal energy.
We welcome our children to participate by utilizing their own voices or other available instruments. We combine intention with the resonance, entrainment and healing vibrations of sounds.
Benefits Of Sound Bath
- Deepens relaxation.
- Lowers stress and anxiety.
- Improves mood and well-being.
- Promotes healthy sleep.
- Heightens focus and energy.
- Children naturally move to rhythm. They are free of inhibitions. They dance and enjoy!
- A feeling of rejuvenation.
Aromatherapy is a holistic healing treatment that uses natural plant extracts to promote health and wellbeing. Aromatherapy uses aromatic essential oils medicinally to improve the health of the body, mind and spirit… working through the sense of smell and skin absorption it enhances both physical and emotional health.
Aroma Therapy Benefits
- Essential Oils and Aromatherapy can help calm children who are anxious or under stress.
- Reduce nausea, discomfort and pain.
- Promotes healthy sleep.
- Enhances the senses.
Forest / Garden Bathing
Forest bathing is extremely grounding. We invite our kiddos to immerse themselves in nature. This helps us get away from the world’s distractions and into a state of stress-free relaxation. We use our Edible Forest or another nature-filled area to share time in. Our children are encouraged to use their five senses to explore and to experiment with walking quietly together and thoroughly experiencing natural environments. Nature walks and Forest Bathing are a great way to ‘unplug’, an opportunity to relax, observe and explore the environment.
Benefits Of Forest Bathing
- Reduces stress and anxiety.
- Strengthens Immunity.
- Improves mood.
- Promotes healthy sleep.
- Enhances the senses.
- Boost attention.
- Decreases blood pressure and cortisol levels.
- Facilitates bonding within a group.
Gardening is a great mindfulness activity. You can germinate seeds, plant them, water them, watch them grow, prune them, harvest and then prepare healthy snacks to be shared together.
There are so many opportunities to focus on the five senses while gardening. While we work together to grow, harvest and prepare food, we ask our children to describe what they see, smell, feel, and when appropriate, taste.
Benefits Of Gardening
- Exposure to vitamin D.
- Decreases dementia risk.
- Improves Mood.
- Helps combat loneliness / Improves social connections.
- Strengthens immunity.
- Helps the ecosystem.
- Improves access to healthy foods.
Other Mindfulness Activities:
Fly like an eagle
Combine movement with deep breathing in this exercise. As students walk slowly around the classroom, they breathe in as their wings go up and breathe out as their wings go down.
To calm down, shake up a glitter jar and then watch and breathe until the glitter settles in the bottom of the jar.
Nothing calms kids like connecting with nature. Collect an assortment of leaves, sticks, and rocks, then let kids use finger paint to embellish their finds.
There are dozens of brilliant books that teach the lesson of mindfulness for children . Reading and/or listening to books read is calming and adventurous. It allows children to use their imagination as they visualize the story in their minds.
Nothing clears the mind and encourages deep breathing like bubble blowing. Blow bubbles, then watch how far they go before they pop!
Play in water
Water is an age-old remedy for stress and worry. Set up a water table and let children engage in water play.
Go on a color search
Give each child a list of the rainbow of colors. Have them search and find one item for each color listed. They must search independently and silently so that everyone can work mindfully.
The practice of rock stacking is great for focus and calming activity. Simply buy a supply of stones from your local craft store and let kids build.
Dancing brings important mental health benefits such as stress reduction and symptom relief for anxiety and depression.
Soothe the senses with music
Music has many benefits for the mind. Play music during work and down times. Or look up Zen playlists on Spotify to help students focus and create.
"Amazing young lady & organization with a great vision! Keep up the good work!" ~ W. Watters
"The Youth Empowerment Program teaches lessons that young adults need for life. Definitely appreciated!" ~ H. Smith
"I Love the activities and education provided for teens. We learn a lot and have a great time." ~ B. Louis
"This is SO needed! God bless you all! I hope this program is encouragement for others to follow suit!" ~ S. VanTobel
"I am now a young adult who took advantage of the Loving Hands Youth Empowerment Series. As someone who grew up in foster care, I had not previously been taught the importance of Credit or a Savings Account, How to complete a job application/ college application, and I am ashamed to say that I could not successfully do laundry without damaging my clothing and could not prepare a healthy meal! These are life skills that all youth need and I was able to acquire with Loving Hands Children’s Home. I sincerely Thank You. This program series is an asset to youth."
~ D. Thompson