Squishing, rolling, pulling, creating… children of all ages enjoy playing with playDough. In addition to being fun, PlayDough has multiple developmental benefits. Our homemade dough feels and smells amazing – making it a simple and natural stress relieving mindfulness tool.
What are the benefits?
Squishing and pulling PlayDough can increase fine motor skills. It strengthens the muscles in the fingers that are needed to climb an aerial hammock or hold a pencil at school. Manipulating PlayDough helps children develop hand-eye coordination. Rolling and pressing PlayDough into cookie cutters provides deep pressure to the joints, which enhances one of our hidden senses called proprioception.
How to Make Amazing Dough.
To start, add the flour, salt, and cream of tartar in a large mixing bowl.
Stir with an electric mixer.
Combine the essential oil of choice with the vegetable oil and mix into the dry ingredients.
Bring your water to a boil. Add any food coloring to the boiling water.
While stirring with an electric mixer, slowly add the water to the dry ingredients.
Continue to mix until the dough comes away from the sides of the bowl.
Next, shake in a little glitter, but not too much or it won’t stick together.
Knead the dough until smooth.
Store your dough in an air-tight container.
At Mindful Child, we make mindfulness and social emotional learning fun. We’d love to have your child hang out with us in a camp or class
Peaceful Pigeon Pose is a yoga restorative pose that is a deep hip stretch for children. If your child has tight hips, a gentler variation is doing this simple stretch on your back. This is a pose that is usually done at the end of a yoga class when hips are more open; thus, it may be better for you child to begin with the modified pigeon on their back and then move to the full version. Afterwards discuss the two versions of pigeon with your child and see which one resonated with them and why.
What are the Benefits?
Peaceful Pigeon stretches the hips, glutes, hamstrings and groin. Peaceful pigeon pose opens the hips. Pigeon pose promotes inner peace. It reduces stress and tension.
What to Say.
We are going to be Peaceful Pigeons. Lay on your back and cross one ankle over the opposite knee. Making a figure four. Flex your toes.
Now lift your knees up. Thread your arms through the triangle between your legs and clasp your hands around the back of your leg.
Breath in and out for 5 breaths.
Bring knees together and rock side to side for a moment before switching sides. Notice how you feel.
We are going to be Peaceful Pigeons one more time, but in this version our pigeon is going to sit up tall and puff out his chest.
Begin in Down Dog. Bring your right knee forward toward your right hand. Angle your knee to the right and slide your shin forward as much as comfortable.
Extend your left leg out long behind you. Try to not lean to one side or the other.
Take a deep breath in as you sit up tall. Breath in and out for three breaths.
Tuck your toes and come into Down Dog for a moment before switching side. Notice how you feel.
Peaceful pigeon can be done on the ground, in a hammock, or even facing a friend! If your child has tight hips or just needs a little stress reduction sign them up for one of our aerial yoga + mindfulness 12-week session!
Teaching fun, therapeutic, aerial yoga and mindfulness to children