Yoga in Schools: Apps and Videos to Bring Yoga to the Classroom

By Kaela Farrise, CEI Intern

Editor’s Note: This is Part 3 of a 3 part series.

Yoga in schools is a growing trend across the country with in-person classes being implemented in some schools. In other educational environments, however, schools have turned to apps or online videos to help bring yoga instruction and related principles into the classroom.  Read below to learn about some of the choices available for educators wanting to bring a yoga practice into the classroom.

Kids Yogaverse
Kids Yogaverse has a series of 3 apps designed to help kids learn yoga and emotional regulation (Grammercy Consultants, 2014). Each app takes the child on a different adventure with yoga poses and affirmations included along the way. The first app, I AM LOVE, was created to help kids feel good about themselves while the other two, I AM SUN, I AM MOON and I AM ENERGY, each have their own positive message tailored towards children. Currently, the I AM LOVE app is only available on iTunes or the App Store for a one-time fee of $3.99.

Sing Song Yoga
In Michigan, the Thornapple Kellogg School District uses the Sing Song Yoga app in classrooms across grade levels (Thornapple Kellogg School District, n.d.). Teacher Jasmine Koster said the app “reinforces concentration and gives students a brain break” in her kindergarten class and that she “always positive feedback from the families” who use it in class (Thornapple Kellogg School District, n.d.). Sing Song Yoga is a customizable app designed specifically for kids that is available on iPhone and iPad. The program uses song lyrics to teach kids how to do individual yoga poses or a customizable sequence of poses that the group has selected. The company also does teacher-training for teachers interested in learning how to teach yoga to kids ages 2-6 or 6-11. 

GoNoodle Kids
GoNoodle Kids is a free app available for both iOS and Android that focuses on yoga, dance, mindfulness, and other forms of movement for kids. The app is designed specifically for kids ages 4-10 years old and claims to be used “in 4 out of 5 US elementary schools to get over 14 million kids moving each month” (GoNoodle, n.d.)!  Data shows that the app is used by a teacher four times per day on average (Foster, 2014). One Nashville elementary school teacher stated he noticed his classes becoming “more attentive more engaged, which means that they’re learning more” (Foster, 2014). The app has been mentioned in media outlets including The New York TimesForbes, and Huffington Post

GoNoodle partnered with Little Flower Yoga’s The School Yoga Project to produce a series of free yoga practice videos specifically for classroom use. In addition to these videos, The School Yoga Project aims to bring yoga into the classroom by offering student programming, professional development, mental health support, and family engagement in the New York City area and beyond.

Cosmic Yoga for Kids
Apps are not the only way that an educator can bring yoga into the classroom. There are also a few very popular YouTube channels focused specifically on teaching yoga to kids. With over 320,000 subscribers, Cosmic Yoga for Kids pairs yoga with fun adventures to keep kids engaged. Through the free videos on the site, kids can journey with instructor Jaime through an adventure inspired by movies like Frozen and Moana or learn important lessons like how to build confidence or have empathy for others. 

In 2018, the federal government reported that 4.9 million kids ages 4-17 were participating in yoga and it is not hard to see why (McCullough, 2018). The benefits to a young person’s performance in school and overall well-being when participating in yoga and mindfulness activities are becoming clearer and clearer. Check out part 1 and part 2 in this series on Yoga in Schools to learn more about the benefits of yoga in the classroom and specific poses to use with students. 

References

Cosmic Yoga for Kids. (n.d.). Home .

De La Cruz, D. (2017, Mar. 21). Why kids shouldn’t sit still in classThe New York Times.

Dunin, D. (2019, May 13). Yoga in schools: Enhanced academic performance and student wellbeingCenter for Educational Improvement.

Dunin, D. (2019, May 31). Yoga in schools: Specific postures, sequences, and lesson plans. Center for Educational Improvement.

Foster, A. (2014). GoNoodle online tool boosts children’s focus. USA Today.

GoNoodle-Kid Movement Videos. (2019). GoNoodle, Inc. (Version 2.1.14) . 

Kids Yogaverse: I am Love. (2014). Grammercy Consultants (Version 4.0) . 

Thornapple Kellogg School District (n.d.). Kindergarten students find “calm” in yogaThornapple Kellogg School District website.

McCullough, M. (2018, Nov. 8). Tykes, tweens, and teens are turning to yoga, federal data show.The Philadelphia Inquirer. 

Mitchell, J. (2016, Oct. 31). GoNoodle is creating a world where kids use technology to unplugForbes.

Rands, K. (2016, Oct. 28). How the gamification movement can help improve kid’s health and academic performanceThe Huffington Post.

Sing Song Yoga. (2015).  Sing Song Yoga LLC. (Version 1.9) . 

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