Mindfulness Activities for Children

We are well aware that there is much evidence out there that proves the benefits of mindfulness for children. But we are equally aware of the challenges that come with trying to implement that mindfulness in the chaotic classroom and often hectic home. So, in order to assist, we’ve scoured the web for some resources and tips that offer excellent methods for child mindfulness that are sure to make being present for children a little bit more fun and, well…mindful.

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Mindfulness in the classroom

Mindfulness practices are beginning to be more fully recognised in their capacity to benefit children physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually not only at school, but in everyday life. At its core, mindfulness is about being fully aware of the present moment with a disposition of kindness and curiosity. Paying attention to the moment through visualisation, mindful walking, meditation, breath-work and yoga are all ways in which children can become presently embodied and grounded.

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Earthchild Spotlight: Katlego Shaloma

In honor of our 10-year anniversary, we are highlighting 10 remarkable Earthchildren from the past and present. Our Earthchild Spotlight number eight is Katlego Shaloma who is 11 years old and in Grade 6 at Sakumlandela Primary School in Khayelitsha. Each time that I have joined the Eco-Warrior Club in Khayelitsha, Katlego has been present and shown herself to be eager to learn. She also has some wild and unruly energy shining through her eyes. You will notice her from a distance, she is definitely something special.

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Earthchild Spotlight: Lucian Engelbrecht

©Amanda Norrlander

In honor of our 10-year anniversary, we are highlighting 10 remarkable Earthchildren from the past and present. Our Earthchild Spotlight number five is Lucian Engelbrecht who is 12 years old and in Grade 6 at Harmony Primary School in Lavender Hill. This young boy made me smile from the very first moment he stepped into the room where we conducted the interview. Lucian possesses such great energy and his humbleness and love for what he does shines through his whole being.

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After School Club: Empowerment in South Africa

Adults cannot deny the challenge of expressing emotions during the physiological, emotional, & mental changes of puberty. With the After School Young Girl’s club, Earthchild project hopes to ease the emotional turbulence for the 5th/ 6th grade girls at Harmony & Sakumlendela Primary. The girls club focuses on promoting positive identity development through self-compassion, non-violent communication & relationship building.

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This program is led by the three outstanding gap year  interns: Asemahle, Sonwabise (Soso), & Sikelelwa (Sikie) who  were also apart of the girls club and recall it’s relevance during their  formative years. “Young girls club is  a space to talk about anything, even though it could be difficult to open up,” Sikie.

The interns’ confident demeanor influences the young girls to voice their opinions & feel comfortable in their own bodies. Asemahle declares,“ The young girl’s club allows them to feel free to be themselves.” Witnessing this comfort & liberation is a radical act of self-love, as young girls & women often receive damaging information about “standards” of beauty & gender-specific behavior.

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Celebrating & listening to peers allows young girls to value the unique gifts of others, without a negative consequence on their own self-worth. Therefore, sharing quality time with peers allows the group to build support & trust in friendship. It’s believed that the less we judge others, the more we connect to our own capacity for healthy relationships. More importantly, support groups facilitate the movement toward empowerment & deep connection.

Each program at ECP cultivates & develops life skills that will continue long into adulthood. As the young girls club also contributes directly to the ECP mission, it has a distinguished ability to address & prevent issues regarding behavioral, emotional, or mental concerns that may arise at school. Impressed by the momentum & enthusiasm of the girls club, ECP Founder/Director suggests, “We need to start a boys club soon.”

Dominique Camille is an Earthchild project intern working in the schools and the office. She is a yoga teacher from the San Francisco Bay Area deeply committed to social justice and liberating expression. 

Positive Thinking

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead

Why embracing positive thinking is so important – especially now.

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The Law of Attraction basically contradicts everything your mum told you when you were a young child and the other children at preschool would pull at your hair and make fun of you: Opposites don’t attract; rather, like attracts like. People who think and act positively will experience positive energy. People who surround themselves with negative and damaging energy are more likely to experience negative side-effects. Happiness and positivity do not just happen. You have to actively work for positivity, actively surround yourself with it and embrace it in your lifestyle.

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