At present this page is a loose collection of ideas for children and playful adults.

Ultimately, in order to get a rough idea of how animals feel and sense inside their own bodies, i'd like to find a consensus of opinion on how the inner body feels for small children.

Such research is merely an idealistic and theoretical goal until groups of parents become intertested in the idea.

It is perhaps not surprising that established groups in autogenic training, body mindfulness, or Buddhism haven't already organised such research. This is because todays leaders in spirituality – in fact generally in government and education – lead from the top down. My teachers, animals, show a bottom up approach is preferable, (and it even allows us a childish giggle at this business management term).

Parents and educators will hopefully be aware of how to approach and engage children of different ages and abilities.

Breath and Smells

I would love parents to start by asking their two to six-year-olds (before they start learning about biology): "when you breathe, where does the breath go in your body?"

Answers will depend on if standing, sitting or lying down. This question could be asked at a very early age, it requires no language skills, a child can point to where the breath goes.

Then for example, with peppermint or vanilla smells, baking bread, making coffee, or when cooking a meal, ask: where do smells go in your body?

There are a number of additional questions about smells and tastes in Chapter 6. First they need to be explored by adults and groups of adults.

GAMES : Empathy With Animals

At preschool children often play games pretending to be different animals and moving like them.

But how does it feel to be a hedgehog? – a hare? – a horse? – explore imagination and empathy. Yes also research the science – (children's science books are wonderful) – but do it in balance with empathy for how it actually feels to be that animal.

And how does it feel to sense like animals, especially using the panoramic senses.

Panoramic Sensing

Play at 'going on the lookout' with children.

Watching for movements all around and out of the corners of our eyes like a horse. Listening-out for dogs and humans like a hare or fox does. And smelling on the wind for coffee or food cooking, just as the hedgehog will smell for apples and beetles.

horsePut your hands together and up between your eyes, mimicking the long nose of a horse with eyes on both sides of its head and its panoramic vision.

The common childrens game of quickly showing a random number of fingers then asking how many, could be done peripherally – on both sides.

With listening, instead of asking a group of children to be silent, ask them : who can hear the first dog bark or pigeon cooing? This would make everyone collectively silent in order to listen.

Ask children and groups of children to guess the distance and direction of a sound (and smell).

Imagine you're sitting on a hill top, listening-out for wild boar, mammoths and snakes.

Imagine a car horn or motorbike are wild-boars... the approaching helicopter is a swarm of locusts... the rustle of a bit of litter is a snakeā€¦

Focusing Games

Looking closely at flowers, bees, listening to birds. Such games are valuable and already commonplace.

But look at how a hare or horse turns their ears to listen in different directions. We can listen in different directions simply by focusing in that direction.

Even more fun is to cup the ears to listen forward, then cup them infront and listen backward. Make a funnel with the hands or use paper rolled like an old fashioned hearing-aid to listen telescopically.

bunny rabbit waking up and sniffing the air


Imagine you're a bunny rabbit in his burrow, waking up and first checking if a fox is going to disturb breakfast.

Blindfold tasting and smelling games have probably been practiced for centuries. These encourage touching and sometimes listening.

But how does it feel to be a hedgehog hardly able to see and only able to hear high sounds, but with a vivid sense of smell? (If parents don't want a young child to use earplugs, then use padded headphones.)

Turn round a few circles, choose which direction to go and find the source of a smell.

It is necessary to use attractive smells simply because they attract, otherwise this will be a purely intellectual exercise. Which smells are attractive for children? I think the simplest may be essential oils.

Cooked meat has been the most attractive smell since cave men times. Market research for take-away food chains have analysed all the variations – but I imagine some parents will object to encouraging children to eat hamburger. Without cooking – autumn mushrooms – rotting apples – salty sea breeze. Cut onions don't smell attractive... so use them on the opposite side to repel.

How does it feel to be an elephant with a nose which is also an arm and a hand, able to pick up the apples it smells – and to function as a scent-telescope so sensitive it is able to smell water 20 miles away?

QUESTIONS - Inner Body Sense

early drawing of pregnant woman previous to autopsy early anatomical drawing previous to autopsyGetting children to draw how it looks inside the body would be a good start to encourage exploration of self awareness. It might also produce some interesting art work. early guesswork on anatomy previous to autopsy

I wonder how it would compare to Early Middle Age drawings when autopsy was forbidden.

Can you listen inside your own body, is it quiet there or are there any noises, for example after eating? Does listening inside stimulate any other sensations?

Can you taste inside your own body. How does it taste on your lips or under your tongue, or the roof of your mouth, and can you taste down in your belly, and how does it taste? sweet, dry, salty, like walnuts, cooked meat or rhubarb?

Chapters 6 and 7 have many other ideas on inner sensing. First it requires groups of aduts to take an interest and experiment.

A GAME - The Little People

Some children have the fantasy of lots of little people living in our bodies, running around passing messages to each other, and generally organising everything.

There are films and jokes about this, but as a child no one ever talked about it, or encouraged it. I can't remember anything clearly except that they had hands, they could touch and they could see! At the time i realised it was pure fantasy and gradually grew out of it.

This sort of visualisation could easily be taught, as a way of making a connection with our bodies and being in touch with ourselves.

Then i'd like to ask children if these little people can see, hear, smell and taste.

Back to Chapter Seven : Creative Dozing
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