yoga and teaching

in almost every teaching environment i’ve been in, i’ve always had my students do yoga. i work with elementary schoolers. so why have them do yoga?

well first, it’s a way for me to connect with my students. after any length of time and discussion, they know i love yoga and go often. by sharing some of who i am as mayah, instead of as their teacher, i can connect with them a little more.

second, it’s good for them. yoga has empowered me. it’s helped me feel safe. it’s helped me heal. i want to pass those skills onto my students. deep breathing (pranayama) and movement (asanas) are beneficial to everyone, espeically children. imagine what the world would be like if we all learned to take a minute and breathe? i’ve found it to be helpful when the kids are restless or just need a mental break. it’s not a coincidence i find yoga to be the most helpful for me then. it’s the magic of yoga!

third, they really like it. after doing it as a class a few times, they want to do more. i’ve had students tell me after things like “When can we do yoga again?” “Let’s do that everyday” “Ms. Mayah my head feels better”.

for yoga with my younger students, i focus solely on breathing. mostly due to space issues (i want to ensure they’re safe- kids are naturally clumsy). also, just breathing is yoga.

incorporating positivity into my daily life

being positive is one thing that I strive to be. I strive to be at peace and happy with my life. There are a couple of things that I have tried to change in my life to make that possible. Below are just a few of them.

  • meditating daily

I really enjoy meditating. I’ve done various posts on where I like to meditate {I even found a tree at my school were I meditated at the beginning of the year but sadly it has been cut down šŸ˜¦ }. I find that taking a few moments to be at peace with myself have been really beneficial to me. I make sure that I’m taking time for me, which has made me really happy. After completing a mediation, I’m at peace with myself and geniunely a happier person.

  • incorporating yoga into my life

At the University of Michigan, there is this program called Group X at the gyms on campus. I paid the fee for an unlimited semester, so I can go to as many classes they offer as I want. They have yoga, zumba, kick boxing and other classes, so I try to go to yoga a few times a week. I have gone to yoga twice this week already. In addition to just doing yoga, I’ve started to work out with my friend Katie (who pushes me to work out with her- which ends up being really good and fun for both of us). I’ve been working on taking care of my body. When you take care of yourself, you radiate positivity. Your confidence is higher and you just feel better about life in general. Also pay attention to your posture. Sit with feet on the ground (with my height at certain seats that’s not an option but try), with your shoulders back. Good posture will go a long way! It helps to keep the energy flowing.

  • sleeping good

Recently, I’ve found out that a lot of college students do not sleep. THIS IS NOT HEALTHY. Studies show that in order for your body to recharge, you need eight hours of sleep daily. Every one’s body is different though. I know for myself, if I sleep between 8-9 hours (closer to nine is better) I feel great in the morning. It starts my day off on a good note. I also wake up to “Excuse Me” by Jazmine Sullivan, which is one of my favorite songs. It just makes me happy. Make sure you are managing your time to take care of yourself is necessary! You are the most important thing in your life. Value yourself.

  • google chrome

I found this feature called Momentum from one girl in my writing class. Attached I have a picture of my screen today. I just love the positive quotes at the bottom. Every day I get a new quote and can put a new goal. I’ve just the goal space to place a little reminder to myself. You can even set a reminder on your phone! These little reminders make all of the difference!

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hill auditoriumĀ 

Last night I attended “It’s A Grand Night for Singing” at Hill Auditorium in Ann Arbor. For my topics in dance and music class I am require to attend two concerts and write reports on them. The first report is due in a couple of weeks, so I planned on going early so I could get the paper out of the way. Earlier in the day, I ended up going to the hospital for my asthma (no worries, my doctor was able to help and I’m fine now). So needless to say I was a little tired during the duration of the two hour long concert but I enjoyed it. One thing I noticed was the lack of diversity. The second act had more people of color than the first, but it still wasn’t an accurate representation of the cultures on campus. I think I’m going through culture shock as of right now. Since I went to a 97% African American high school, becoming a “minority” is honestly scary. I think I’m scared because of lack of exposure. Due to my school experiences, I am comfortable being around African Americans. So this is a growing experience for me. Honestly I wish I would’ve really thought about the transition and what challenges might arise more. I sat on the Mezzanine, and I was one of four African Americans. I never really paid attention to race, because I was always just one of many. Race was never a big deal when you’re the majority. I think that’s why I’m noticing it more. But anyways, the show was good. I liked a lot of the music and I liked how the directors in corporated movement and sounds as major parts of the performance. I had to write a report on the show, which I’m almost done with. I am happy with the way the paper turned out and I’m feeling a lot better. I think asthma and issues with eczema are in relation to going through culture shock and being away from my family. But I’m going to take it one day at a time and just breathe.