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Infusing Yoga with Literacy for Kindergartners
by Sydney Solis


Editor´s Note: This is a great idea for combining yoga while building literacy skills for young children. These ideas can be used by a teacher in a classroom or at home with your kids. Adding movement while learning enhances the memory…and making learning fun is always key! 

In Storytime Yoga after school programs, I work around snack by making up a story for us to use in yoga. Children who are in their listening lotus postures have the privilege of being selected to pull a puppet out of my magic bag. What is it? Monkey, the kids say. How do we spell monkey? We sound it out phonetically. I write it on the erase board in the library where we meet.

What’s his name? Charlie. Where does he live? Zoo, Africa, a tree. We write those words down too by sounding them out. We check out Africa on the globe. What does he like? Bananas. Write that word down. What is his problem? He doesn’t have any friends, the kids reply. How is he going to solve the problem? We go on and on, what happened next, introducing a zoo keeper, how he escapes to the next door zebra to have a friend.

After snack we retell our story with our bodies using yoga. Hanumanasana for monkey. Jump up and down like a monkey. Bananas are any yoga postures children want to demonstrate, and kids know a lot! Yoga is so mainstream in schools now. It’s great! Naturally we do the tree. We have a little relaxation. Tell the kids to go home and tell that story to their parents and get them to practice the yoga with them.

A Chinese girl also taught us how to say hello by Knee-How! That’s it phonetically, how it’s spelled I have no idea! But we were in chair pose, utkatasana, to touch our knees, KNEE then rise up our arms in the air, HOW!

And the little kids hug you when they see you. Life is a joy. Joy is service.

Om Namah Shivaya!



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About the Author
Since 2000, Sydney Solis has been spreading the joy and wisdom of kids yoga and story with Storytime™ Yoga, the pioneering kids and family yoga program. From her children's show on PBS featuring her award-winning DVD The Peddler's Dream, to Kids Yoga Camps at Kripalu, Sydney enchants audiences of all ages. A widow, she lives with her two children, four dogs and  72-year-old Puerto Rican farmer mentor on her Yoga Farm in St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands. (Also find her at www.storytimeyogaforkids.com.)





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