Mindfulness | Teaching Tips

Pretzel Kids Yoga Teacher Feature: Meet Patricia!

Patricia Chilangwa

Meet Patricia Chilangwa, our April 2019 featured Pretzel Kids yoga teacher and our mindfulness expert at Pretzel Kids!

Patricia has considered herself a teacher for her whole adult life. She was a preschool and elementary teacher for years. And when she had kids of her own, she transitioned to a part-time position as a foreign languages teacher (Italian and Spanish). Patricia is mother of three, and loves having the flexibility to be available for her kids and their afternoons sports and activities

This busy mom has been a 200-hour yoga teacher and Pretzel Kids yoga instructor since 2017. She is the co-creator of our new mindfulness course, “How to Teach Mindfulness to Kids.” A lover of learning, Patricia is now pursuing a Masters Degree in Mindfulness Studies at Lesley University.

We recently had the pleasure of talking to Patricia about her journey with Pretzel Kids yoga. Here’s what she had to say:

Pretzel Kids: What drew you to the online Pretzel Kids Yoga certification online course?

Patricia: I wanted to bring the benefits of yoga to children and teens. Kids need more healthy ways to cope with life’s demands and fast pace. Schools focus mostly on academics, but I see a huge void in the areas of emotional intelligence: self-awareness, self regulation, motivation, empathy, and interpersonal skills. Those are all necessary life skills that we can teach through yoga.

Pretzel Kids: What is your favorite thing (or two) about the Pretzel Kids yoga teacher training course?

Patricia: The imaginative and creative way in which it brings yoga to life for children. I also love that The curriculum includes kids with special needs.

Pretzel Kids: Do you feel more prepared to teach children’s yoga after taking our course?

Patricia: Yes, I feel super ready to teach children’s yoga!

Pretzel Kids: Where do you live and where would you like to teach Pretzel Kids yoga in your community?

Patricia: I now live in Westwood, Ma. with my husband and children. I am open to teaching anywhere in my area, preferably in the mornings.

Pretzel Kids: Where are you from originally?

Patricia: I am originally from Italy, but I grew up in Venezuela. I came to Boston for college over 20 years ago, and never left.  

Pretzel Kids: How do you hope to make a positive impact with the Pretzel Kids curriculum?

Patricia: I hope to bring a very accessible yoga practice that works for all kinds of bodies and abilities. Many of the school districts in our area place a huge emphasis on competitive team sports…not for everyone. I want to bring a fun, healthy, non-competitive practice to anyone who is open to it.

Pretzel Kids: You had the opportunity to create a couple of Pretzel Kids lesson plans (and possibly others by now!) as part of your certification process. What was this creative process like? If you have taught these lessons or any others you’ve created, did this make teaching easier and what was the reception from the kids?

Patricia: The Pretzel Kids lesson plans were so fun and inspiring. Once I started creating my own, I could not stop my imagination. As a former schoolteacher, I know how children benefit from visualizations and wording they can relate to. I have a feeling kids will love my African Safari themed lesson, and I look forward to teaching it.

Pretzel Kids: How did you hear about Pretzel Kids? Would you recommend the course to friends, moms, childcare providers and yoga teachers? Why?

Patricia: I did some research and found Pretzel Kids on my own. I loved that it was an online program, and I knew that it was the right one for me. Without a doubt, I would recommend the program to anyone interested in bringing yoga to kids.

Pretzel Kids: What’s your favorite Pretzel Kids pose?

Patricia: I love Elephant Pose!

Pretzel Kids: What’s your favorite Pretzel Kids game? What’s your favorite Pretzel Kids theme?

Patricia: I love Yogi go/Yogi stop, especially as it can be adapted to any class theme.

Pretzel Kids: What do you like to do in your spare time?

Patricia: Not that I have much free time these days, but when I do…I like to go for walks, knit, read historical novels, or enjoy relaxing time by the fireplace. I love family trips around the world whenever we can get away. I recently started learning Tai Chi and QiGong.

Pretzel Kids: Tell me one fun fact about you (can be anything!)

Patricia: I can’t have wet hands for too long…I can’t stand the feeling of wrinkly hands, and I can’t help it.

Pretzel Kids: What’s your favorite food!

Patricia: Indian food, curry dishes, plant based meals.  

Thank you Patricia and we wish you continued success! Do you want to be featured in an upcoming Pretzel Kids newsletter or blog post? Let us know by emailing us at info@pretzelkids.com!

Side note: Are you interested in taking the Pretzel Kids online certification course and learning how to run successful classes like Patricia? We’d love to talk to you and help you create a lucrative side hustle teaching kids yoga! We can’t wait for you to join our Pretzel Kids yoga family!

Got questions? Call us today!

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