YES To Higher Aim NO to Lower Lame

Last Friday I taught PE/Health  Standard: Maintains physical, social, and emotional health by practicing healthy behaviors and goal setting, and Objective: Compare and contrast what you eat/drink/do that is healthy/not healthy and how to create boundaries around unhealthy habits. The kids wrote on their name plates what they wanted to say YES to and what they wanted to say NO to so they could create the mind/body connection on their mats.

Here are some of their responses:

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For the Schools in Atlanta to have Dedicated, Dignified, and Dream-worthy yoga teachers in the schools who dare to Breathe, who dare to invest in the health of their children, their educators, and their administrators,  so compassion, focus, confidence and creativity ring.

 

I shared this Dream with Brittany Cunningham, our new innovative principal of Druid Hills High School.

and she said, “Let’s Go For Your Dream.”

Let’s make yoga an Elective.

She set up a meeting with Coach Jackson, who was ready to join hands…

 

“This is what we need,” says Coach Jackson. “Let’s start with Fridays, and we’ll see who is interested and then next semester, we’ll make it an elective…”

So now we join together, under the banner of  physical education, and put forward the essence of yoga into the school~one child, one class at a time.

And so it is…

Thank you, Principal Cunningham for making it Real.

Rise Up with us on this sunlit path of yoga..

“(We are) happy to join with you here in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our (schools).”

“But we refuse to believe that (our) bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds (for) the great vaults of opportunity of (our schools). And so, we’ve come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice.”

“We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind (Atlanta) of the fierce urgency of Now. This is no time to engage in the (argument schools can’t change) or to take the tranquilizing drug of (just send the kids to private school). Now is the time to make real the promises (to our children). Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of “(in school suspensions) to the sunlit path of (Yoga). Now is the time to lift our (city) from the quicksands of (disrespect and dismissal) to the solid rock of (mindfulness). Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God’s children.”

It would be fatal for (Atlanta) to overlook the urgency of (our schools). (These) sweltering (semesters) of the (students) legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating (yoga curriculum) of freedom and equality. (2014) is not an end, but a beginning. And those who hope that the (children) needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the (school system) returns to business as usual. And there will be neither rest nor tranquility in (Atlanta) until the (school children are) granted (their) citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our (city) until the bright day of justice emerges.”

“But there is something that(we) must say to (our administrators who already have yoga in their schools), who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice: In the process of gaining our (mindful) place, we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of (self-righteousness). We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative (yoga tools) to degenerate into (My school is better than yours). Again and again, we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.”

The marvelous new (mindfulness) which has engulfed the (Atlanta Schools) must not lead us to a distrust of all (other school boards), for many of our (school boards), as evidenced by their (yoga electives), have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. And they have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.”

We cannot (stretch) alone.

And as we (stretch), we must make the pledge that we shall always (Move with our Breath).

We cannot turn back.”

That’s what the PE teacher at Druid Hills High School here in Atlanta, GA, said to us when Cheryl and I arrived to teach our first class, two weeks ago. So, we set out twenty mats, and waited to see how many students chose to come join us, instead of doing their regular PE class.

And wouldn’t you know? About 30 students chose yoga!

So, on our second Friday, we arrived with 30 mats and set them up. Then guess what happened?

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