Posts for Tag : Alexander Technique at school

Is it useful learning Alexander Technique at School and if so, why?

Every now and then I check in with the school children I teach to find out what they are learning from Alexander Technique. Here are some answers from class –

 

‘It is useful learning Alexander Technique at school because it teaches me how to go from really hyper to really relaxed quickly. It helps me stay calm and not react. When I do sports and things it helps me not get aches and pains. It also keeps me calm for exams, because I can switch off nervousness and get focussed instead.’ Alisia, age 13

 

‘My mum’s started to say my posture is better and I notice in the mirror I am not slouching.’ Josie, age 13

 

‘It trains your mind whilst you are still learning so you can get into good habits while you are still young.’ Anna, age 13

 

‘It’s changing habits for the younger generation, so that they don’t inherit the previous generations flaws. It is good to start at a young age at high school because we then have guidance as to what will benefit you most, what is right for you, which makes it easier to live a day to day life.’ Josie, age 13

 

‘Alexander Technique helps you let go. It gives you another perspective. So it is not so stressful dealing with annoying people at school, or people who find you annoying.’ Josie, age 13

 

‘It slows everything down and helps you appreciate every second. You notice everything, all the senses and sounds. Maisie, age 14

 

‘School is stressful and when you do Alexander Technique it helps you remember how calm and open you can be.’  Esme, age 13

 

‘If you have done Alexander Technque in a room in the school and then you go back into it another time the room reminds you to feel calm. That is why it is good doing it in school.’ Josie, age 13

 

‘You feel more responsible for your body and you get the gist of how it works more. That makes you feel safer and more comfortable.’ Marie age 14

 

‘I find I concentrate more after Alexander Technique and stay focussed in class. I find  am kinder and nicer to people after doing Alexander Technique.’ Xander age 13

 

‘It is tiring and busy at school. Alexander Technique gives you half a period to put things into perspective and think about keeping yourself healthy. It doesn’t take long in Alexander Technique but it helps it make possible all the things we have to do. I get better results when I take a break and gather my thoughts.  Xander age 13

 

‘It helps you concentrate. It helps you learn a different way of learning.’ Mika, age 14

 

‘It’s fun learning about your body.’ Lucy, age 14

 

‘It teaches you awareness, it helps you pay attention and listen to your body and be in the moment. It helps you let go and unwind.’ Dominic, age 14

 

‘It makes me think about things I’ve never thought about before about my body. It makes me aware of myself which is useful because it makes me more interested in how I am.’ Stephanie, age 15

 

‘I think Alexander Technique helps you mentally and physically. For example, if you have aches – people don’t realise that it is yourself that is making it happen!

It makes you self aware with your interactions with other people and your interactions with yourself. It makes you strong minded or strong willed enough to stand your ground when you are confronted with people or situations that can be tricky or difficult to deal with, especially at school when there is the stress of peer pressure.’ Hannah, age 16

 

‘It helps me be less reactive. You become more open minded to new ideas and different ideas, rather than saying ‘no that won’t work.’ You don’t jump to conclusions as easily. Esme, age 13

 

‘It helps you be more comfortable with your decisions.’ Dominic, age 14

 

‘I helps with your confidence speaking to people, you look and feel more confident.’ Mika, age 15

 

‘When I open up my body, I open up my mind’ Xander, age 13

 

If you are interested in Alexander Technique for your children, here are two things that I have produced that may be of interest

 

Body Magic, audio download for semi supine

The Daily Ease – A Walk in the Woods, a colouring story book

 

 

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Alexander Technique Drawings

Page from The Daily Ease – A Walk in the Wood Colouring Book

 

I have been slowly working away creating images that hopefully express Alexander Technique in a fun way. A task that I find exceedingly challenging, but very engaging.

 

One teacher, who phoned to ask to use one of my cartoons to promote her work within the BBC, said ‘the Alexander Technique needs more images with a sharp wit like these.’ Amazing feedback!

 

Another teacher said I was wasting my time making art to promote our work!

 

An interesting difference of opinion.  I love Alexander Technique and how it can so simply and profoundly transform peoples lives. If I can do a wee bit to bring it into peoples field of attention via a cartoon or a verse or something else, yippee! To me that attempt is not a waste of time.

 

What do you think?

 

I plan to make more Alexander Technique inspired cartoons and drawings next year and I want to plant trees, to do my bit for this beautiful planet we live on!

 

This year I made an Alexander Technique inspired colouring story book for children and adults. All profits will be used to plant trees.The Daily Ease – A Walk in the Woods,  link here!

 

It is the sort of thing as a child I know I would have loved, and I think would have given me a ‘heads up’ on some useful thinking …

 

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‘Hedgehog – Feeling a Bit Prickly!’

detail from ‘The Daily Ease – A Walk in the Woods’

 

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‘News – Skeleton Slumps at Screen!’

FB logo for The Daily Ease – Alexander Technique.

 

 

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The Daily Ease – A Walk in the Woods

It’s finally here –  The Daily Ease colouring book. Inspired by walking in the woods with my dog Maisie – this is Alexander Technique passionista meets nature lover meets eco warrior meets tree hugger meets creativity encourager

 

For children and adults alike.

 

Interwoven with the drawings and writing are lots of Alexander Technique concepts and inspirations, hopefully presented in an easily absorbed way to make you smile

 

Here is a sample page …

 

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A link to buy the book here –  The Daily Ease A Walk in the Woods

Written with love, all profits from this book will be used to plant trees here in Scotland

 

What people are saying –

‘This is more than a colouring book, it is a delightful, gentle, joyous book of wisdom for all ages.’

‘Within the words and magical illustrations are lots of wonderful reminders of the wisdom and teachings of the Alexander Technique and how they can be so easily incorporated into our daily lives to bring us ease and flow.’

‘Kirsten’s book combines her wonderful warmth and humour with her gift for art, love of nature and passion for the Alexander Teachings in a way that is accessible for everyone.’

 

Do email me if you have any questions kirstenfharris@btopenworld.com

Discounts available for quantity purchases (email me)

To post abroad please again email me as I will need to add postage

Free postage in the UK

 

I hope you enjoy The Daily Ease A Walk in the Woods

COLOURING BOOK KH-2

 

 

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Tongues!

Tongue Tied
by Kirsten Harris

 

Here’s a funny little question
That left unchecked will cause congestion
Let me ask you, ‘Where’s your tongue?’
Clamped to mouth’s roof you’ll be high strung!

 

It’s best to let your tongue go south
Resting in your lower mouth!
If yours is held and pressed up tight
You will never feel quite right!

 

Tongue Up’s part of the startle pattern
Best let it loose in the oral cavern
If it’s up, you’re stuck in fear
Let it rest! I hope that’s clear?

 

Up tongue’s reacting from a fright
Neck, shoulders, back become too tight
Horrid habit! Be aware
Down with tongues to clear the air

 

The tongue up habit clamps your jaw
At night your teeth you may well gnaw!
Your neck will tighten, your face will fix
This grimace habit is best to nix

 

Your shoulders seize, that clamps your lungs
All from an up held uptight tongue!
Tongue tied to the roof right now dispense
Immediately you’ll feel less tense

 

Just rest it in a ‘low jaw’ place
Think a smile and feel the space
Your tongue will widen when you smile
Your face will soften in a while

 

Breathing opens, energy increases
What do you notice when your tongue releases?
It may at first feel big, weird and wet …
Have you got the message yet?

 

The world will feel a better place
When tongue’s at rest in smiling face
Ask your friends ‘where is your tongue’
To change the habit is good fun

 

EPSON MFP image

Growl now if you’re a stress puppy?
I bet you’re habit is tongue ‘uppy!’
Family rows, disputes and fights?
Perhaps the family tongues not right

 

You’ll see it when friends thinking’s grim
Tongue up, jaw locked, tension within
‘Psychic glimpse’ of things not right?
Friends minds you’ll ‘read’ with this stress insight

 

The good news: things will change right now
With this wee gem of tongue know how
So down with tongues! You’ve heard me right
The tongue up habit’s just uptight!

 

 

Facebook – The Daily Ease Alexander Technique
www.kirstenharris.co.uk
www.kirstenharrisart.com
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‘It’s the Jeremy Kyle Show Miss!’

‘This class of Alexander Technique is like being on the Jeremy Kyle Show Miss!’

 

Two separate groups of children spontaneously likened Alexander Technique to being on the Jeremy Kyle show at school this week.
A hilarious observation with a good point!

 

Why did they liken learning AT at school to the Jeremy Kyle Show? Because I was teaching them to really listen to each other. To stop habitually reacting and competing and give each other a chance to speak. Harder than it may sound.

 

They are bright children, all specialist musicians.
However there was a distinct lack of listening skills.
They were engaging in ‘I am right and you are wrong’ tit for tats, and telling each other off in a rather ‘parental manner’ rather than listening to each other.
Result – frustration … tight necks …

 

Reactive escalations with their characters and habitual relationships to each other getting in the way of constructive learning from each other, or me for that matter! They all have good personalities individually but were definitely annoying each other as a group.

 

Listening skills required … they are musicians in the making after all. Working in harmony is essential.

 

We worked on not interrupting, pausing, waiting, inhibiting, listening actively, giving each other space and time to be free to speak and to feel heard …
As an adult it is a good exercise in self awareness too – teaching a class of unruly kids who are falling out with each other!

 

The improvement in the atmosphere, quality of interchange and general ease in the room from thinking about listening resulted in the quip ‘Learning Alexander Technique is like being on the Jeremy Kyle show, Miss!’

 

Maybe dodgy day time reality television has its uses after all!

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(For non UK readers, the TV show referred to invites people to resolve their differences on air, usually resulting in a lot of shouting!)

 

Things you may like

Body Magic audio – here

A Walk in the Woods Colouring Story Book – here

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Children Being Profound about the Alexander Technique!

Children being profound about the Alexander Technique!

 

“ I find it makes everything easier because there is less tension throughout my being. I get tense when I start thinking too much about being right as opposed to being free and allowing myself to be wrong.

Allowing myself to be wrong is useful as I am putting less pressure on myself. I can think more clearly. I have more choice and I can appreciate being right more easily. My habitual experiences are not in the way of my development.”

 

Ethan – age 13 years

 

 

“ Alexander Technique is very helpful for me because I am a stressful person inside. The Alexander Technique has helped me release mental and physical tension which frees my body and makes me feel calm and collected. It also expands my mind to different ideas, to look at things from a different perspective. You concentrate on anything and think forward and up and soon I find my neutral zone to feel and think calmly and it feels balanced and easier to live life.

It helps with my creativity because it is an experimental way of thinking about daily activity and it helps enlarge my creative side because there are no mistakes and even if there might be a mistake you can learn to come back to your poised mind and inner self. You can just step back and acknowledge where you ant wrong and think forward and up again.”

 

Hannah – age 13 years

 

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Why is Alexander Technique not Compulsory at school, asks 12 year old boy!

This is a completely spontaneous comment from a 12 year old boy I teach at school. I am lucky to teach the Alexander Technique at a high school in Edinburgh.

 

“I think Alexander Technique should be compulsory at all schools because people need to be more aware of the way they think and do. As I learn less is more I have a whole new perspective and the ability to completely stress relieve just by doing nothing for 17 minutes and thinking about myself in different ways.”

 

Ethan, age 12

 

 

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