Children respond to preschool yoga at South Fayette library
Imagine 20 children, ages 2 to 6, in a small room, just being quiet and focusing on their every breath.
That's what Britney Kwiatek, yoga instructor, encourages at South Fayette Township Library every Monday morning. This is her first class for children, but one that has captured the attention of at least 30 caregivers eager to have their children participate. The class was made possible by a donation from the Friends of the Library.
“The class has been embraced,” said Jody Wilson, library director, “and it's a fun class to observe.”
Kwiatek, who has taught the ancient art to adults for years, now brings meditation, basic yoga postures and activities that make kids giggle together.
One class started with cotton balls, straws and the children, kneeling on their mats. After inhaling through their noses, each exhaled through the straws moved the cotton ball – and calmed the students. What they had just learned was the first technique of yoga.
“You connect with each breath and stay in the present moment,” said Kwiatek, 40, of Bridgeville, who sees the need for this kind of understanding in an age filled with technology.
“It pulls the kids away from the screens and the Iphones.”
The networking is good for the caregivers, who also can participate in the activities.
Following the relaxation, she takes the children on an interactive adventure. The first class took students to a zoo; the second, to the sea; and the third, to a rain forest. In these imaginary settings, they learned basic yoga poses, such as becoming an airplane by standing on one leg with arms extended. Later, they would be an elephant or a lion.
“Be as much of a lion as you want to be,” said Kwiatek, who makes up each story.
Wilson had done yoga with her 2-year-old daughter after reading a few books.
“You make it into play,” Wilson said. “They pretend to be animals and then make them into yoga poses.”
One student took his knowledge of the elephant posture to school to share with friends. Parents have told Kwiatek their children practice at home.
In yet another activity during the class, the children were rolled up in their mats, pretending they were burritos. They wanted to play “the snack game” over and over.
After the play and the pauses, classes end with the lights off and the children resting on their mats.
Kwiatek finds yoga to be a powerful tool and a gift.
“When they come in, they're tired and ready for a nap,” Kwiatek said. “Then, they get excited. As they leave, saying namaste, they seem refreshed to me and ready to take on the day.”
Dona S. Dreeland is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5803 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Washington, D.C., man sues Edgeworth, former police officer over arrest
- Little Lions Academy makes classroom work fun in the summer
- Speeders under the watchful eye of police
- Collier rejects zoning change for townhomes
- Musicians ready to perform at Teenage Takeover 3 in Bloomfield
- New signs welcome motorists to Carnegie
- Kiddie Academy to open in South Fayette this fall
- South Fayette residents warned of abandoned mines
- Oyler: Pa. rivers, precipitation enable us to enjoy water without worry
- Town Talk: Carnegie couple celebrates 50th wedding anniversary