Helping Kids Cope
By: Debra Lawless
Harwich Author's Book Teaches Meditation Techniques To Children
by Debra Lawless
Now that the busy holiday season is behind us, does anyone need to be reminded that we live in a complex and chaotic world?
Children live in this frantic world as much as adults do. Michelle Renee Pelletier has released a new book to help children take a step back into a calmer place. “Golden Child: Meditation for Children and Your Inner Child,” was published as an e-book on Dec. 21 by the Center for Psychic Healing, 248 Main St., North Harwich, of which Pelletier is the founding director. A paperback version is soon to follow.
For the past 17 years Pelletier has been teaching meditation tools to adults. “Golden Child” offers a different, visual way to introduce children to some of the tools of meditation.
The book grew out of Pelletier’s online teaching of kids to meditate. She found that online teaching differed from teaching in a classroom’s “peaceful spaces.” In the online classes, in contrast, “I found myself laughing because the students tend to wiggle or flop on their bed, siblings walk through the room and poke their heads on camera, and I could hear a student’s bunnies eating in their cage.”
As Pelletier contemplated her teaching methods, she came up with the idea of creating simple visuals for various energy meditation tools. In “Golden Child” the tools she introduces are grounding, the bubble and gold suns. The book offers techniques to “self-soothe to release anxiety and frustrations, to find a quiet place on the inside, to feel calm, and to give to yourself.”
And what child couldn’t benefit from these techniques?
“Kids who read the book get it right away,” Pelletier said during a telephone interview last week. An added plus is that children can learn to meditate more easily than adults can because they don’t have to clear the noise out of their heads. “An adult has to unlearn,” Pelletier says. In contrast, “children are right there” with a “simple, present awareness of what is going on around us.”
Pelletier dedicates the book to her 9-year-old son Jade, “who reminds me of everything I need to know.” Before moving to Harwich in 2008, Pelletier lived in Sonoma County, Calif. for 15 years. Her roots on Cape Cod stretch back to her grandmother, who bought a house in Wellfleet in the early 1930s.
In “The Golden Child,” the first technique is the grounding cord. In simple drawings, Pelletier asks a child to imagine the grounding cord is orange. “I attach it to the base of my spine. It travels deep into the earth. I use my grounding cord to connect to the earth and let go of energy I don’t need.”
The next is the bubble, which surrounds the child and connects to the grounding cord. “I feel secure in my bubble. My bubble is my space,” she writes. Bubbles are also known as auras and energy fields.
And the third is the gold sun. “I gather my energy within my gold sun.” With the gold energy from the sun inside the bubble, “I feel peaceful, and connected to me.”
After these simple definitions, the book moves into “Meditations and Activities.” Children can envision and draw their grounding cords and even make an audio recording of where they were grounded.
And what is the ultimate goal of these activities?
“Children use these tools to release others’ energy after school, do their math, notice what is true in a conversation, and go to sleep easily,” Pelletier writes in the author’s note at the end of the book.
Pelletier says she has shown her book to parents and librarians and received favorable responses to it. The book is generally geared to children ages 3 to 6 although many adults have sought a copy, too. Adults who use the book will, of course, see something different in it than what young children see.
“If we just put ourselves in our chair we can close our eyes and pay attention to what’s within,” Pelletier says. “It’s that simple and that accessible.”
“Golden Child” is book one of what Pelletier projects as a series of at least five books. “Golden Child” book two will introduce a series of meditation tools such as “home base” (otherwise known as “chakra”), “my space rose” (a sense of safety) and “I’ve got the room” (a tool to allow energy in a room to release).
“I’ve had a lot of moms who are interested in learning meditation with their children,” Pelletier says. “Moms want to connect—to step out of their own sense of busyness and be present with their kids.” This book can help.
“Golden Child” is currently available as an e-book through Amazon.com. It will soon be released as a paperback also through Amazon. For information on the upcoming “Golden Child” book launch and open house for children visit www.centerforpsychichealing.com.