The benefits of music have been long hailed.
And when joined with meditation, and visualization techniques... wow!
For the last few months, I spend 5 minutes or so every morning with my class doing meditation.
Each day is different.
Somedays I give more directions, using visualization techniques and a bit of yoga breathing, and other days it's just up to the students themselves.
This video has a bit of everything - mostly just letting them focus on the music and responding to the music (this is music therapy), and if you notice, there is heavy breathing sounds - which is a yoga breathing technique.
Visualization was only used a little in this particular session. Sometimes I use more visualization which has to do with colours and using actions as well.
Notice that I don't say anything in the beginning (when the students are walking in) - I use visual and auditory cues (dim lighting, music in background, PowerPoint slide) that tell the students what they should do. You'll notice that many of the kids just walk in, sit down, and immediately get into meditation "mode".
By the way, the "You Are A Tree" bit has really helped - many of my kids usually have issues with staying still (yep, hyperactive!), an when I first taught them to breathe in and out, they had trouble balancing and staying upright! So using the basics of the yoga tree-pose, I taught them to keep their eyes focused on one point and to ground themselves like a tree. Immediately, the students who usually could not keep still showed resolve and focus in their eyes. No more swaying around and off-balance postures.
Finally, I ended with smiling.
The benefit of just putting your facial expressions into a smile is that your body can't tell the difference between a real smile/laugh or a fake one... sometimes I get the class to just laugh for 30 seconds non-stop. This helps put the kids (and myself) in a good mood at the start of the day!
Results of meditation - my students have feed-backed to me that the daily meditations have helped them feel calmer, happier, more focused...
... but hey, don't just take it from me - try it with your students and see the difference yourself! ;)