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Forest Walk Meditation

Forest Walk Meditation offers a student with autism and a vision impairment the chance to connect with others, while using her imagination to create.

By Linda Hagood

Nice samples of meditations for verbal students were shared from the CDs Rainbow Walk and Relax.  Students who enjoyed them were asked to create their own.  After listening to a very peaceful Beach Story, one group wanted to create a beach story for students who were blind that focused only on the smells, the feel of the wind and sand, and the sound of the ocean, rather than the visual references in the original meditation.  Another student said that she preferred the forest, and her forest meditation is shown here.  This student has autism, and her challenges are in self-regulation and in connecting to others.  She was able to address both of these by building a partner into the meditation (leaning back-to-back against her partner, the “tree trunk”), and by sharing the meditation with her class.

Background

Katrina is an 18-year-old student who has very low vision due to Leber Congenital Amaurosis, and also has high functioning autism.

Goals

The goals of this activity were:

  1. to practice a calming activity when she was not upset, in order to add to her repertoire of self-regulation tools.
  2. to practice a context for peer interaction, as she models the activity for peers in her mindfulness class.

Katrina’s Forest Meditation

Imagine you are in the forest.  You sit under a tall tree and lean your back against the trunk. Trust the tree trunk to hold you up and relax against it. Take a deep breath and smell the pine trees in the forest. Listen and hear the wind rustling through the pines. Feel grass beneath you like a warm bed.  Stay very still and keep breathing, listening and feeling.  Breathe, Listen, Feel. Breathe.  listen, feel.  Sometimes when you breathe you can smell flowers starting to bloom, and sometimes when you listen, you can hear birds chirping to each other.  Sometimes when you feel with your fingertips, you find ferns and moss, soft as a blanket.  Breathe, listen, feel. Breathe Listen Feel. Breathe, Listen, Feel.  Turn and put your hand on the tree trunk’s shoulder, Pull yourself up and continue your walk in the forest. 

Reflections on Instruction: Forest Meditation

Reflections on Instruction: Forest Meditation

Return to Playing with Words Introduction and Essential Components.

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