If you’re teacher looking for resources for this age group, we’ve made a compendium of class plans for 8-12s here.
Why is yoga important for Tweens?
Being a tween (8-12) can be tough. Your body’s changing. You become more peer-focused, so what your friends think starts to matter to you. Friendships deepen. Communication gets a little more subtle. With humour and irony around, you notice that there are more dimensions to interaction than you realised. There are younger children looking up to you, creating new expectations about your roles and responsibilities. You stop learning to read, and start reading to learn, realising how little you know. Homework becomes more challenging. There’s more of a timetable of lessons. There is more emphasis on how well you are doing. You are given scores for things and can compare your own results with your friends’. You start caring what you look like. You look at the world around you for role models, and seek to emulate others. Reality becomes more important than the realms of imagination – as you move into the real world. There’s a lot going on!
I like to think of yoga for this tweens as a bridge between childhood and adolescence. Yoga helps them understand what’s going on with themselves and their bodies, giving them time to step back from the everyday, and it helps them see things better in the context of their new reality.
Kids in this age group still love a story-based class every now and then, but these class plans are moving towards a different focus. We look at the topics children are studying at school, and issues for the age group like growing up. We move towards a more adult style of yoga. Many of the postures will be familiar from story-based yoga, but as the kids mature physically and mentally they can engage with yoga on a deeper level. We include sequences and postures that are more typical of an adult yoga class, so before you start using these plans, please read them carefully and make sure that you are comfortable with what you are teaching. And if you are not ready, start practicing!
I hope this helps you plan and teach some great yoga classes, and as you develop your own class plan ideas I encourage you to share them with the world too, so we can bring more great yoga classes to more kids.
We’ve made a compendium of class plans for 8-12s here
Here’s an example kids yoga class plan for tweens – based on a game called ‘Yography’:
Example of 8-12’s Vol 1 Class Plan – Yography