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The single most important element to a successful kids’ yoga practice is connection. If you connect well with your students, you will have strong, fun classes with kids who are eager to participate, eager to follow along. If the kids don’t feel that connection, you may lose them all together.
And you can set the tone in the very first few moments of class. In fact, you can set it before the class even begins.
Any time you have a brand new class in general (that’s where all the pint-sized skeptics tend to be), first thing you should do is introduce yourself to each child as he or she enters the class. Notice I said child. Not parent.
Whereas typical protocol would be to introduce yourself to the parent first, followed by “…and who’s this?”…and then the parent would introduce the child, my suggestion is to first go directly to the child and introduce yourself, ask his or her name, and maybe even ask “…and who’s this?”, while gesturing to the parent.
When introducing yourself, squat down to your student’s level, so you can look him or her eye-to-eye, and eye-level. It’s a gesture of respect and humility that tells your student that you are someone who can be trusted.
I also highly recommend making some small talk upon first introduction, in order to break the ice. Ask a question, make a funny comment. The more you engage your students before class, the more they will be eager and willing to stay engaged during the class.
And that’s the mini yogis minute tip of the week. Check back every week to learn something new!
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