Turtle Wing Time
I am back in the states (from some yoga-fun in Costa Rica) and super excited to check in on how you are doing after the…
Yoga & Mindfulness Day Care Training!
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- Turtle Time Name Change!
In the meantime, I wanted to send a reminder and refresher about my favorite and first “tool” – Turtle Time. However, as I am typing a huge wave of emotions and a name-change are rushing over me.
Today is April 6th! Oh my goodness, it’s April 6th! I am sitting here organizing this post wearing one of my Turtle Wing Fun Run shirts and I can’t help but change the name of this pose from Turtle Time to Turtle Wing Time. Shout out: Thanks again Dustin Haver, aka: Saturday Morning Design, for creating the greatest Turtle Wing Fun Run Turtles ever imagined.
April 6th is the day Jack Hooper left us on earth, but the creation of The Turtle Wing Foundation began. In honor of that sweet boy, today will forever be known as #turtleday for the #turtlewingfoundation in honor of #autismawareness.
You see, Jack loved turtles! He also loved turtles “with wings” (read his story here) so it’s only right that we rename and rewire this “tool” to give it some wings of its own.
Not only can our littles use this Turtle Wing Time “tool” to help take a moment to slow down and retreat, but they can then “sprout wings and fly”.
What is Turtle Wing Time?
Turtle Wing Time is when you pull your legs, arms and head into your strong, protective turtle shell.
When do you use Turtle Wing Time?
When a child or classroom is feeling: overwhelmed, exhausted, overstimulated, scared, anxious, nervous, sad,
angry, disappointed, etc…
Turtle Time Tips!
- Use it daily – Repetition is key! It’s not always about looking for something new (before nap? before a difficult transition?).
- It’s fun – So make it fun (while transforming into a calm classroom environment)!
- Add a Turtle Wing Time corner – Create a quiet, soft, secure space that Turtles can retreat to.
- It will start to happen everywhere and anywhere – Incorporate the first 3 tips & this will start to happen organically.
- It opens up communication – And by happening everywhere and anywhere it becomes a a tool that provides continuous protection beyond their feelings. For example: if a child is hurt (physically or emotionally) by a friend, they can “Turtle” and it will alert you, the teacher or parent, and other friends around that something is wrong without that child having to retaliate with an unpleasant behavior or reaction.
Don’t change your extraordinary children!
Let’s instead add a little Turtle Wing Time in our daily lives to get children feel safe in their own bodies and to:
- Calm down and self regulate.
- Clear the clutter in their heads and hearts to open up to learn.
- Increase peace in our environment and change the classroom climate.
More on Turtle Wing Time!
This tool is meant to “withdrawal” from overstimulation while providing “nourishment”. Most of us live in a very stimulating world and any extra stimulation can overwhelm and already taxed nervous system. Kids (and adults) need a break from all this input. This is why I’m a huge advocate on practicing this daily and creating a space in your classroom where children take a regular break.
And just like a turtle is able to draw its limbs and head into its shell for protection, a child benefits in social-emotional development greatly from drawing inward from time to time to nourish one’s self and find ease in their own shell.
How to Turtles Grow Turtle Wings?
After you Turtle (for 1 to 10 minutes, don’t cut it short if you don’t have to) – fly high and free in Airplane Pose! It is a great balancing pose that helps develop concentration. This pose strengthens the legs, chest and arms. While doing this pose, think to yourself or repeat as a class “I am free.” Imagine soaring through the sky as an airplane (or a turtle with wings).
- Toddlers and preschoolers: hold for just a quick moment (click here for an easy airplane pose).
- Big kids & teens: see how long you can stay in the pose (click here for the advanced pose).
- When you feel done, return your leg to the ground and arms to the sides. Now repeat with the other leg to be balanced.
- If you are just getting started or a wee babe: don’t be afraid to take flight from while staying “grounded” (click here)!
Wing (Airplane Pose) Benefits!
- Strengthens the back side of the body
- Improves balance and posture
- Enhances concentration and calmness
- Helps kids take safe risks
- Kids are encouraged to do what feels right rather than to be perfect (self-awareness)