As we near the transition from summer into fall, children can observe the physical changes upon the Earth. One visible change children of any age can notice is the changing of the leaves from green through the rainbow toward brown, until they eventually fall off.
Leaves are a great way to teach children about the changing seasons and to provide real-life connection on the act of change. We like to teach children why leaves turn colors and fall. It’s also a great opportunity to talk about the other senses. What else do you see during the fall? What about smells and feelings?
To promote movement, we invite kids to do the Falling Leaf pose. We pretend to be leaves hanging onto our trees, ready to change color and fall. This pose is great for learning balance.
Stand on two feet in mountain pose extend your strong arms at the shoulders horizontally.
Shift your weight into your right leg as you raise the left leg, still extended to to the left.
See how long you can manage to be strong and still before you let go of the pose.
Repeat on the other side.
Additional Exercises for Kids:
Have a child observe a changing tree for a number of weeks. They may choose to record their observations in a journal or draw the tree and leaves and they change color and eventually fall down.
As the leaves do fall down, the children can remember the long journey the leaves took before they eventually let go. The leaves had been re-growing since the spring and only just started to change and fall down.
For kids ages 7-11, this can be an opportunity to have them think more deeply about life and values. How do we as people change over time? What changes are visible in you? What changes are happening that may be invisible? How can those changes be felt and observed?
How did the pose feel as you were doing it?
How does the body feel now that you are done?
What was challenging about that pose? What was enjoyable?