Health Check Kids: Smithfield preschoolers engage in positivity

Preschoolers are engaging in “Mindful Magic” at Smithfield Early Learning Center.

At My Learning Tree, part of the new curriculum there is yoga.

“We focus on self-regulation and we’ve also put in a piece — two pieces — about happiness and kindness,” said Founder Marie Walkow, who also refers to herself as chief magic officer.

In fact, they share kind words and happy thoughts in a group setting. Many of them agreeing, mom and dad were their happy thoughts.

“It’s definitely magic,” said Walkow. “Some of the tools that we use, if a child’s having a really hard time and just can’t cope with whatever’s happening in the day, the tools that we use, literally, it’s magic.”

Those tools include deep breathing exercises, meditation, and singing. It all starts when the youngsters walk in the door.

“When they get in, they greet us,” said Jessica Joubert, a teacher at My Learning Tree. “We have a greeting, so it’s four things: fist bump, hand shake, a high five, or a hug.”

When the children simply need some time to themselves, it’s their call. They can come to the magic space and have some “me time” and do things like draw, or simply nothing!

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