New preschool of­fers an­i­mals and med­i­ta­tion

Hamilton Press - - FRONT PAGE - KEL­LEY TANTAU

A kinder­garten that of­fers yoga and med­i­ta­tion for its stu­dents will be Hamil­ton’s first com­pletely green and sus­tain­able preschool.

Fu­ture Kids is sched­uled to open at 75 Church Rd in July and em­bod­ies eco-liv­ing from the ground up.

It has been de­signed by sis­ters Abbey Henry-Met­calfe, Shay Dixon and Leah Henry and area man­ager Ni­cole Downie.

As well as their zero plas­tic bag pol­icy, an or­chard and pu­ri­fied drink­ing wa­ter, the cen­tre will also have a range of an­i­mals on site.

A goat, rab­bit, dog, chick­ens, worms and lambs are all on the cards and will be part of the stu­dents’ every­day pro­gramme.

Not only that, but Fu­ture Kids will of­fer chil­dren the chance to take part in yoga and med­i­ta­tion ses­sions.

‘‘We’ll have ar­eas for re­treat, so that if chil­dren want a quiet space they can re­treat into an area and sit on their own and read

‘‘It's not just the phys­i­cal­ity of yoga, it's that con­nec­tion with the body.’’

a book or have a mind­ful mo­ment. It’s not just the phys­i­cal­ity of yoga, it’s that con­nec­tion with the body,’’ Downie said.

Downie is a qual­i­fied teacher and also trained in nat­u­ral ther­a­pies such as yoga and med­i­ta­tion. She said the re­lax­ation tech­niques will not only be fun but will help chil­dren with self­aware­ness.

‘‘If you’re an adult at a yoga class, how hard is it to still your mind? We’ve learned not to do it.

‘‘Whereas if we can teach chil­dren to do that now, then they’re go­ing to grow up a lot more con­nected to their bod­ies.’’

Downie, Henry-Met­calfe and Dixon said they’ve been en­vi­ron­men­tally-fo­cused since a young age.

They have filled four of up to 20 teach­ing po­si­tions at Fu­ture Kids.

And al­though Henry-Met­calfe said there was a lot of com­pe­ti­tion around the area, many of the ed­u­ca­tion cen­tres had no con­nec­tion back to the earth.

Fu­ture Kids will have re­cy­cle sta­tions in each room and up to 50 per cent of the food at the cen­tre will be or­ganic.

The sis­ters may be self­con­fessed ‘‘new-age hip­pies’’, but they be­lieve ed­u­cat­ing chil­dren about the en­vi­ron­ment is a no­brainer. Es­pe­cially, if we still want to have hu­man be­ings on this earth, Dixon said.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit: fu­turekids.co.nz

Fu­ture Kids’ Ni­cole Downie, Shay Dixon and Abbey Henry-Met­calfe out­side the new premises.

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