Daily Archives: January 20, 2011

Down & Up

Yup, the title could be referring to Down dog and Up dog, but it isn’t. Rather, I’m referring to the down days and the up days, the sessions that leave me wondering why I wanted to do yoga with middle schoolers, and the sessions that lift my spirits thinking connections (to each other, and by students to themselves) were made. Last week, we had yoga on Monday and Friday, with a snow day cancelling Wednesday’s session. Monday’s session was definitely an up day (feel free to read more about it here and here), and Friday’s session was…read on and see.

Last Friday

I should have picked up on the fact that we were doing yoga during last period on a Friday, after the week’s routine had been interrupted right in the middle with a snow day. In addition, there were three visitors from other sports classes – middle schoolers who play on varsity teams, had after school games that day, and therefore had nothing to do during their regular middle school sports time. I usually do not mind these visitors, but on Friday they swelled our numbers to 11 and we barely fit within the floor area. Within 15 minutes it was apparent that the kids and I were out of synch with one another. I opted to stop class and give everyone the time to sit and chat.


And then there was yesterday’s session, a definite up day. We had just returned from a four-day weekend due to Monday being the Martin Luther King, Jr holiday and Tuesday being another snow day. (Since our return from December vacation, we’ve had one snow day a week!) I had taken a wonderful yoga class on Monday, and decided to follow the same sequence with my middle schoolers. Most of the session was done sitting or lying down, and it seemed a calming way to ease back into school and yoga for both the kids and me. (I was especially pleased because the entire flow came without the use of notes, simply referring to my memory and my growing comfort with teaching in the flow/in the moment.)

At the end of the session, the same student who asked about poems previously, asked if I would read a poem. Darn, I didn’t have one at the ready! This same student then asked if she could recite a poem or talk us through a visualization. Of course! The lights were low, the kids had just done shavasana, and up she stood to begin quietly walking back and forth as she took us to Australia, blue waters, sandy paths, and kangaroos. At the end of class, she asked if she could write up some visualizations to share in future sessions. Perhaps a connection made?