MEDITATION FOR KIDS by Johanne Bernard


How To Clear Your Head and Calm Your Mind
Age Range: 8 - 12
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This guide, geared toward young meditators, offers over a dozen meditation practices from the Buddhist tradition.

The text opens with a bit of history. Unlike other guides, which tend to emphasize secular mindfulness, this text embraces a specifically Buddhist approach to meditation (though this need not limit its utility for readers of other religious traditions or none). Brief information about the Buddha is provided, and sayings and stories traditional to Buddhist teaching are interspersed. The majority of the book consists of individual meditation practices. Each practice is explained, and guidance is offered for how to teach the practice to one’s parents. The direct simplicity of the text is appealing; however, at times the tone drifts toward scolding or even authoritarian, for example, as readers are admonished to begin in certain ways, practice certain exercises only at specified times, or stay absolutely quiet. Several line drawings of male and female figures—all white as the page—appear throughout; even the Buddha is depicted with skin devoid of color. At times, a whiff of privilege is evident; multiple-parent households with quiet, private spaces and easy access to nature are presumed, and no accommodations are given to include children whose experiences may not be reflected in these instructions.

Most useful for children already exposed to, and looking to deepen, meditation practice. (Nonfiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Nov. 12th, 2019
ISBN: 978-1-61180-620-5
Page count: 96pp
Publisher: Bala Kids/Shambhala
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1st, 2019