Olympic theme will help pupils to relax
Published at 08:59, Saturday, 16 June 2012
A CHILD relaxation expert is making an Olympian effort to de-stress 700 children.
Holistic therapist and former teaching assistant Mel Rickerby started her Relax for Kids classes five years and is offering free sessions for 700 children – the same number as there are trained Relax coaches – in the run-up to London 2012.
She has been in seven schools across north and west Cumbria in recent weeks and will next week be at Kingmoor and St Bede’s, in Carlisle.
“It’s a mixture of dance, movement games, stretching and breathing,” she explained.
“It’s not that new – there are 700 coaches worldwide but just two in Cumbria.
“I set myself an Olympic challenge and I’ve been to schools in Kirkbride, Bowness, Bolton Low House and Cockermouth.”
Mel, 40, said she would be in Kingmoor School in Carlisle next Thursday, helping 120 children relax.
She then hopes to hold a class with an assembly of around 300 children at St Bede’s next Friday morning and said she was well on the way to completing her Olympic task.
“The techniques are quite easy for the kids to learn,” she said.
“You are using your imagination and different themes. This one is obviously an Olympic one.”
Mel also runs classes of four sessions from Hazeldene therapy centre, at Orton Grange, in Carlisle.
“Mum can chill out in the therapy centre while their kids do the class,” she added.
She said the relax classes – aimed at four to eight-year-olds – helped improve children’s confidence after just one session and she got good feedback from parents.
Each of the hour-long sessions involves guiding children through an imaginary scenario, starting with dance and ending with meditation.
One of the first schools in Carlisle to explore the classes was Upperby Primary in 2008.
Jane Hodgson, headteacher, said they did her pupils a world of good.
It led to teachers being trained to hold mini-sessions with their classes.
Jane said: “It puts children in the right frame of mind to be responsive to learning, because it’s a calming influence and it helps them focus.
“We need to get children into it as early as possible, so they can use it effectively right through the school.”
Mel is also holding a fairy day next month at High Head Sculpture Valley with workshops on wand and mask painting, face painting, adult fairy meditation, a toadstool trail and stalls.
The day runs from 10am to 4pm. Normal admission charges apply, adults £2.50 and children £1.50.
Go to www.cumbrianfairyday.com
Published by http://www.newsandstar.co.uk