Try This: ‘Elephant ears’ massage helps kids perk up

If you’re dealing with tired, sluggish kids who aren’t able to listen or pay attention, try this quick mind-body trick.

Called elephant ears, it is demonstrated here by Leah Kalish, founder of Move With Me Action Adventures, which specializes in yoga and movement education for kids.


What it does

The gentle massage around the outside of your ears stimulates the energy meridians in the body, Kalish says, waking up your senses, so you’re less distracted and anxious and can hear and think more clearly.

What to do

Starting at the top of your ears, slowly and gently rub your ears with the thumb on one side and your first finger on the other. Work your way down to the bottom of the earlobe, breathing deeply.

Kalish has kids use this chant to learn the move and enhance its anxiety-busting benefits:

“To think and hear clearly, I gently rub my ears and say dearly, first on the tip-top, ‘Ooooh.” Then down I must drop, ‘Ahhhhh.’ Cobwebs are clearing. Now I am hearing. Relaxed, alert, ready to learn!”

How much

Rub for the length of the song. Repeat.