This week brings me to the importance of mindfulness and how to teach your child empathy in this world. Many of our children are over-scheduled, over-stimulated, rely on other things to entertain themselves, & aren’t connected to their true self and what they can give to this world. This is the area that will create a leader. An influence. A philanthropist. Teacher. Mentor. This is a neglected area in education and we need to change this.

Below are my top 5 ways you can teach your child mindfulness and empathy.  You can learn more on what is being done and how you can make the difference after you read my top 5.

1. Have your child write about their day and what they noticed. Consider this part of their “homework”. Get them connected to events in their day and how they may have influenced them. Grab those teaching opportunities when they share with you.

2. Let the quiet and the calm create the colors of their mind. These are necessary to ignite creativity. Let their brains do some magic without relying on other things to give them information. It doesn’t have to be long but let them sit in quiet with nothing else but their brains for 20-30 minutes a day.

3. Allow your child to tell you how they would solve their problem. And how they would do it differently the next time. We are so quick to jump in and solve our children’s problems. Telling them what to do. Then they rely on everyone but themselves to make decisions and problem-solve. They may not have the 100% right answer but give them the opportunity to grow and become confident that they can handle their world.

4. Focus: The key to connection. The doorway to mindfulness. The pathway to the present. The light to the world around us. Before bedtime, Brooklyn focuses on a candle flame for 2-5 minutes (she chooses the time) where a chime starts the exercise and a second chime ends it. During that time she is to focus on the flame. The colors she sees, the movement, and anything else that her eyes sees in that flame. It’s a calming exercise full of connection to her brain.

5. Stop and teach your child to observe situations and others around them. When you see a situation around you, let’s say how a person is being treated right by you, take the time to observe with your child and then talk about it together. Don’t tell them what you saw, ask them what they saw and their feelings about it. Would they treat that person the same way? Why? What would they do differently and why? Make sure there is a balance between positive and negative situations you encounter.

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Learn more from Goldie Hawn’s mission and organization: www.mindup.org where her goal has been putting actual CURRICULUM into the classroom for your children. Watch her 30 minute video all about this and WHY it is her mission here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j7VSkCp7xoE

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It doesn’t have to be all math, science, testing, ranking, and always looking to what the future holds academically. We desperately need to teach our children how to grow their spirit, their connection to their feelings, the confidence to express them, the unique gift of helping others, the desire to give, and the strength to open the doors of compassion towards others.

Simply Yours,

Michelle Mansfield Blog