• Boys & Girls Club of Harlem

Relaxation and Emotional Grounding In the Time of Corona: An At-Home Literacy Lesson Plan

Crafted by BGCHarlem Literacy Specialist Kristin Richardson Jordan

Photo:ptaourchildren.org


(You may click here to print the lesson or the student may view the lesson online and write his/her answers on a separate piece of paper)


In this time of Coronavirus, what can we do to center ourselves and relax?


This lesson will explore the benefits of meditation and recommend some online kid-friendly meditations while increasing literacy and meeting common core standards.


Start by taking a look at one or more of these books for kids (listed below) and, if time and connection allows, have a conversation using the follow-up discussion questions.


Then practice or have your kid/kids practice one or both of these guided meditations for kids (links below) and, if able, review the vocabulary words that were used in steps 1 and 2.


Lastly, read the sample and allow the student/students to make up their own meditation using the template at the end of this lesson plan. This works best if they write out their meditation first, and then practice the meditation with themselves or others.


You can end using the final reflection questions to have a conversation.


Addresses Common Core Standards:

K.SL.1. /1.SL.1./2.SL.1./3.SL.1./ 4.SL.1./5.SL.1. (Common Core ELA - Literacy Standards)

K.RF.4/ 1.RF.4/2.RF.4/ 3.RF.5 / 4.RF.4/5.RF.4. (New York State Education Department ELA learning standards)

K.RF.4a/1.RF.4a/ 2.RF.4a/ 3.RF.4a/4.RF.4a 5.RF.4.a. (New York State Education Department ELA learning standards)



Step 1: View/Read One or More of These Kid’s Books


📘Be a Friend

Written by Salina Yoon, video by The StoryTime Family

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e8H1fa3OPvQ&t=1s


Be a Friend Hardcover by author Salina Yoon is available on Amazon here: http://fave.co/2t1B2Z0


📘The Bad Mood and the Stick

Written by Lemony Snicket, video by The StoryTime Family

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IB4VrJslYiI


The Bad Mood and the Stick by Lemony Snicket with art by Matt Forsythe is available on both:


📘Me and My Fear

Written by Francesca Janna, video by The StoryTime Family

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=THAIfa8EXgA


Me & My Fear by Francesca Janna is available on both Amazon (https://fave.co/2SUzr1Y) and Book Depository (https://fave.co/2vfOCtp)



Follow Up Reflection Questions:


  • What did everyone call Dennis in “Be A Friend”? Are you ever quiet like Dennis? What can be good about being quiet? When listening to and practicing meditation, we are often silent.


  • Have you ever been in a bad mood like Curly in “The Bad Mood and the Stick”? What’s something you can do when you are in a bad mood? One thing you can do when you are in a bad mood is to meditate.


  • Do you have a fear like in “Me and My Fear”? Are you maybe afraid of the Coronavirus? Meditation can help us connect to our emotions.


Step 2: Do One or Both of These Online Kid-Friendly Meditations


Mindfulness Meditation for Kids by Beth Kurland:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=shR8DLyOkcg


5 Minutes Bodyscan Meditation for Families and classrooms by Fablefy:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9A0S54yAgEg



Step 3: Look at These Vocabulary Words


  • Mindfulness - The first video talks about mindfulness in calling your attention back to breathing. Breath is a big part of meditation.


  • Visualize - The flashlight in the first video is a visualization.


  • Sensations - The second video talks about the “sensations” of your feet touching the floor.


  • Tension - The second video talks about noticing your legs, hands, arms, etc. Are they “tense?” For each part of the body scan, the narrator says, “let them be soft.” Meditation is often about letting go of tension.



Step 4: An Example of Your Own Meditation


Read aloud the following meditation:


I’m going to focus on happiness by visualizing swimming at the Harlem YMCA. I’m choosing happiness as my focus because that is the emotion I want to feel most at this moment. I’m choosing to visualize swimming at the YMCA because that is a happy setting, memory, and place for me.


I’m taking in three deep breaths, holding my breath for three seconds, and then letting it out.


I’m going to let stress go from my shoulders. I sometimes have tension there.


I’m going to take a deep breath while focusing on my shoulders and imagine the air I take in is coming in through my mouth and moving towards my shoulders. I’m taking in another deep breath for three seconds, holding it, and letting it out.


Now, I’m going to visualize swimming at the Harlem YMCA. The environment is comfortable, the water is warm in the heated pool, and it’s bright because of the lights overhead. I’m floating and taking long strides through the water, and my body feels light. I can hear others splashing in the water around me. I can smell the chlorine.


As I end my meditation, I’m taking all that I am feeling back with me into this moment. I’m ending with three deep breaths where I hold my breath for three seconds and then let it out.



Step 5: Make Up Your Own Meditation


Use this template below as a guide for writing out your own meditation. After you write everything out, you can do the meditation for yourself and/or others:


I’m going to focus on _______________ [What feeling? Calm? Relaxation? Warmth? Connection? Happiness?] by visualizing __________________ [What image or setting or activity can you imagine that would lead you to feel how you would like to feel?]


Take in three deep breaths where you hold your breath for three seconds and then let it out.


I’m going to let stress go from ________________ [What part of your body holds stress?]. I sometimes have tension there.


I’m going to take a deep breath while focusing on my ____________ [Name the body part] and imagine the air I take in is coming in through my mouth and moving towards my _______________ [Named body part]. I’m taking in another deep breath for three seconds, holding it, and letting it out.


Now I’m going to visualize... ___________________________ [Name image, setting or activity].


[Sit with that image, in that setting, or focus on imagining yourself doing that activity for one minute. When that minute is over, write about it. What do you see? Smell? Hear? Touch? You can see the example above for guidance.]


As I end my meditation, I’m taking all that I am feeling back with me into this moment. I’m ending with three deep breaths where I hold my breath for three seconds and then let it out.


Final Reflection Questions:


  • How did you feel during these meditations? Confused? Relaxed? Anxious? Bored?

  • If you feel the meditations were helpful, how and why were they helpful?

  • If you feel the meditations were not helpful, why not?

  • How did you feel about doing your own meditation?


Follow BGCH social media channels for daily updates. Students we would love to see your work - be sure to upload a picture of yourself with your completed lessons using the hashtag #BGCHarlem.  



View our additional 'Resources For Students & Parents for Dealing with COVID-19' here.

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