Warrior II

We don’t want to be stuck in the past, or too far into the future. Stay balanced in the present moment.

As we move into a New Year, many of us are working on resolutions. Reflecting on the past and setting goals for the future is important for personal growth. These skills can be taught to young children, and using mindful movement helps facilitate these life lessons. I recommend using the Yoga Calm® curriculum and the Past, Present and Future activity as a launching pad.

Past and Future Reflections

I began by having the students take two post-it notes (different colors) and write a positive word or phrase about the past on one and the future on the other.

Here are some examples:

Past: Learning to ride a bike, my baby sister, being on a football team.
Future: Learning multiplication, summer vacation, the Super Bowl (I have a lot of football fans in my class).

Then, we crumpled the pieces of paper in to tiny balls.

Students setting goals
See Warrior II from our Move Mindfully Card Deck for social emotional language on how you can cue the movement. Better yet, have students read the card and be the leader!

I personally struggle with Warrior II. For some reason, in my personal yoga practice, it always seems to creep into the flow when I feel I have momentum. Then, the instructor stops us in our tracks. Challenges us to stretch our arms. Bend our leg. Pause. Notice. The gravitational force weighing on outstretched arms and thigh burn combine for a one-two punch of total discomfort. However, the inner fire always seems to ignite a deep place, and I leave the pose feeling stronger.

Bring in the Movement

Back to the Post-Its. The students crumpled up the post-its, with the future and past phrases, and held one each hand. In the back hand was the past, noticing its effects on us and being grateful for where we are today. In the front hand was the future, eyes looking forward, dreams yet to be realized. However, where do we find the balance? Right in the middle. In the present moment.

warrior II in the classroom

After  intense physical and emotional exertion, we brought it back to the present moment. We took our crumpled up paper and had a “snow ball fight”, based on a Responsive Classroom greeting. After a few throws, students picked two pieces of paper (since they were all mixed up, no student picked up their own). We sat it a circle and went around, reading the word or phrase on the post-it we recovered. This is an effective sharing technique because the writer can stay anonymous.

Later that day, when we came back into Warrior II, I posed a series of questions while they held the pose. What does it mean to be present? What keeps you grounded? How can you stop and notice?

My students loved keeping noticings and observations in their journals. Keeping a journal is a fantastic way to increase present moment awareness. Check out our store for the 1000 Petals journal and commit to a journaling practice today!

moon noticing resolutions   noticing the good
How can you bring present moment awareness into your life? What activities may you try with your students? Leave a comment below!

Be Well,

Stephanie Kennelly

4 replies
  1. Kelly Gorder
    Kelly Gorder says:

    I love this post! We are starting a new Yoga Calm group at our school and I can’t wait to use this activity! Thank you for sharing this great idea.

  2. Amy Pedersen
    Amy Pedersen says:

    I have been so focused on working on warrior poses, I used the correct language, about past and future, and focusing on the present, and I even used the rock, where they thing about a strong person in their life and the rock represents that person, and they can take that person with them (the rock) wherever they go. I love the warrior poses, but I do get a lot of whining about their legs and arms getting “tired” or “it’s hard.” 🙂 We will continue to work on the warrior poses. Thanks for the post!

  3. Lynn Jensen
    Lynn Jensen says:

    I have been doing yoga with my setting 3 special education students since September and they love it. I have recently added the poses from 1000 Petals. Prior to this, I was just making up my own poses. I love the progression and organization of the yoga poses offered from 1000 Petals. My students ask to have yoga each day and are disappointed when we aren’t able to, therefore, we have made it a priority to do each day. Thank you!


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