A Mindful Halloween

Kathy HegbergMindfulness With KidsLeave a Comment

 

How to Have a Mindful Halloween…

Calm the Gobblins Down!

Remember…your child’s brain is probably moving into hyper-drive with the excitement that surrounds this time of year.  And you’re probably asking how do we have fun without the craziness?

A Less Sweet Halloween

As the season of eating and cravings begins soon with the sweetest event, Halloween, our brain parts are going to be active.  They’ve dressed for the occasion, and are here to guide you and your children through the maze of choices to go with the holiday.  First the bad news.  Researchers from the University of New South Wales Australia and the Indian Council of Medical Research have found that eating a ton of sugar as a little kid can have an effect on your brain similar to that of experiencing serious trauma!  While this study was limited, it did show that excess amounts of sugar intake have the same effect as stress and cortisol levels to the brain.  When kids are under stress, guess which part of the brain is in charge?  That’s right, the amygdala (guard dog)!  And we all know what that looks like.   Reactive behavior increases, poor decision-making increases, the ability to solve problems decreases, behavior problems increase, etc.  What to do?

Take a look:

26 Healthy Halloween Treats for Trick-or-Treating (Kid approved)

Mindful Little Ghosts?

Our nervous system is beautifully designed to react super-quickly to any sense of potential danger to your safety or well-being…for children, Halloween may conger up imagined danger stimulating a similar reaction. The imagined danger can start lurking several weeks before the actual event.  Help them settle rather than react using these simple mindful exercises to stabilize their feelings.

6 Mindful Exercises for Children at Halloween

Color this page with your kids or students and talk about what their thoughts are about Halloween. Feelings might include excitement, impatience, fear, etc. Have them write their feelings on the back, or write for them. Then talk about what part of the brain those feeling effect.  Ask what might happen to their behavior in this circumstance.  Practice mindful exercises to bring stimulation back down to normal levels…every day!
Download the coloring page.
What’s new for FocusedKids?
1. We will be providing professional development for the Roaring Fork School District in both semesters.  Call Lindsey for info:
2.  We have a new component called “FocusedFamilies” and are offering classes throughout the school year, in 3 communities: Basalt, Carbondale, and Glenwood Springs.  See our event schedule.
Please contact your school to see when we are visiting.
3. We are continuing our work with kids and teachers in the classroom to foster healthy self-regulation skills.  We know that these skills are essential for successful learning and for social-emotional balance. Please contact your school to see when we are visiting your child’s class.
4.  We have started implementing our evaluation plan in short iterations. These will happen both in the classroom and with the parent training throughout the school year. 
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