Gear Guide: Yoga Cards for Kids
By Su Reid-St. John
Brie and a fresh baguette. A picnic blanket and a starry night. Some things are just better in pairs, right? Here's another: learning to read and yoga. It's true. Research suggests that kids' brains actually latch onto information better when they're movingâ€”and that's the impetus behind the terrific Learn-With-Yoga ABC Yoga Cards for Kids.
Here's the deal: There are 26 pairs of cards (a pair for each letter). Each pair has one card for the child and one for the grown-up. The kid cards are really eye-catching, with a drawing of a kid doing a pose beginning with that letter on one side (e.g., Butterfly pose for B, Kite pose for K) and instructions on the other side. The adult cards add a bunch a suggestions for helping teach both the letter and the pose. Herein lies my one issue with these cards: They are meant to be shuffled around, but doing so makes it hard to keep the pairs together. Why not just put everything on one card?
But I'm nitpicking, because there's a lot to like here. The descriptions are well written and easy to follow, and the drawings are delightfulâ€”colorful, simple, happy. (One red-haired character looks a lot like my 4-year-old daughter Zoe, which delights her to no end.) Plus, the cards are color coded for different levels and uses (e.g., green for basic poses, blue for resting poses, etc.).
What I really love about them, though, is that they practically beg you to play games with them. Our favorite: Choose three cards without looking, then make up a story together about them (and do the poses along the way). Of course, that soon morphs into Zoe happily yelling out instructions to crazy homemade poses like Bellybutton and Fire, weaving them into long tales that inevitably involve some misdeed perpetrated by her imaginary friend Pinky.
But who cares? Zoe and I get to spend time together doing yoga, giggling, and making up storiesâ€”and she gets to practice her letters, too, which makes her even happier. What's better than that?
Product: Learn-With-Yoga ABC Yoga Cards for Kids
Pros: The cards are simple and eye-catchingâ€”and a really fun way to teach your little one both yoga and her ABCs.
Cons: The separate kid and adult cards are hard to keep together.
Extra tip: Don't stress if you don't get through every single question on each card. You're moving? You're talking? It's helping.