art class kids

A Year of Living Mindfully

The practice of mindfulness at any age is both simple and profound, and research has shown that there are many benefits of mindfulness for children. It strengthens their “attention muscle” and accesses the parts of the mind that deals with focus, decision-making, and self-regulation. It helps them to recognize their emotions and empowers them to choose their response versus quickly reacting.  It supports and enhances learning, emotional intelligence, and overall well-being across the lifespan.

Our year-long mindfulness series will incorporate practices that connect children to themselves through breath work, games, stories, movement, and art with lessons designed to provide children with a solid foundation to build their own healthy self-regulation. In each class, we’ll use art to foster understanding of mindfulness, as well as empower children to utilize art as a mindfulness practice in their daily lives. We will feature different media and techniques across the year to expose children to a wide variety of mindfulness-based art experiences and we’ll provide resources and suggestions for further integration at home.

Mindfulness is simply being fully engaged in the present moment with a mindset of kindness and curiosity, but it’s a capacity that must be tapped, developed, and deepened through practice. Our goal is that by the end of year, both you and your children will have a toolkit of resources and experiences to integrate mindfulness into your relationships, bringing more presence, equanimity, gratitude, and joy into life.

Monthly Themes

January: Intro to Mindfulness: Glitter Jars

February:  Mindfulness of Breath: Watercolor Resist Paintings

March: Mindful Listening: Painting a Song

April: The Five Senses: Aromatherapy Clay Creations

May: Mindfulness of Body: Body Tracing Self-Portraits

June: Mindfulness of Thoughts: Marble Painting

July: Mindfulness of Emotions Part 1 (Awareness): Cardboard Mood Masks

August: Mindfulness of Emotions Part 2 (Responding): Mandala Printmaking

September: Cultivating Joy: Mixed Media Collage

October: Empowered Communication: Affirmation Animals

November: Gratitude: Thankful Trees

December: Kindness: Dyed Wooden Hearts

Home Extension 

Each month we’ll provide ideas for bringing mindfulness into your home, including book suggestions, games, discussion topics, and art. We’ll provide ideas for your child to use each media on their own, as well as prompts for a collaborative art journal for you and your child to work on together. This unique experience will nurture your connection with your child as you bring more presence and creativity into your daily lives.


We will meet the first Saturday of every month from 2:00-3:00 PM or the second Thursday of every month from 1:00-2:00 PM (for homeschool families).

If registering for the year, your investment each month is $15 ($180 total), which includes all materials in class and resources for home integration plus an art journal for each child to share with your family. The drop-in rate for each class is $20, which includes all materials in class and resources for home integration with the art journal prompts.

For children ages 3+

Space is limited and registration is available now.

Art Dog (formerly Creative Wellness Studio) is located at 19570 Amber Meadow Dr #130 in Bend.

montessori school bend or

A Year of Living Mindfully May Workshop: Mindfulness of Body and Life Size Self-Portraits

In May's class, we'll be focusing our attention on our bodies. Our body sends us many messages, some subtle and some loud. Cues like hunger, thirst, and needing to go to the bathroom are fairly obvious, but other signals can help us identify our emotional state. For example, "butterflies" in our stomachs tell us we're nervous and tense eyebrows and shoulders could mean we're angry. We'll learn to listen to the messages our bodies are telling us through movement and games, do a scan of how our body is feeling, then create life-size body map self-portraits. By having the children indicate on the body map where they feel certain emotions and what it feels like, they are able to better listen to the messages their body tells them in the future.

Best for ages 4-10.


Saturday, May 4th

2:00 - 3:00 PM


Thursday, May 9th (for homeschool families)

1:00 - 2:00 PM


Art Dog (formerly Creative Wellness Studio) is located at 19570 Amber Meadow Dr #130 in Bend.

Mother Daughter Circle: Embodying the Goddess

What does it mean to become a woman? There are many voices screaming for girls and young women’s attention when it comes to this topic, from media to peers, cultural norms to taboos. How can we support girls in listening to their own inner voice and then being confident enough to express themselves creatively and verbally? How can we guide them in honoring their bodies through hormonal and physical changes? As mothers, how can we support our daughters through this sensitive transition and deepen our relationship during a time where often children grow distant?

Our goal for this series is to help facilitate open communication, reconnection, and a deeper relationship between mothers and daughters. We will combine ancient wisdom, practical advice, and fun activities designed to support girls as they reach adolescence and their mothers.

Ashley will lead the young women in goddess stories, discussion, games, movement, and art exercises designed to facilitate understanding of womanhood and how to best cultivate it in their own life. We will start by finding our voice, then express our creativity, learn to listen and follow our intuition, then finally honor our bodies.

At the same time, mothers will work to deepen their own understanding of themselves, knowing that the best way to provide love and support for their daughter is to be grounded in their own self-mastery. To support this, Shanti will facilitate exercises and discussion surrounding the weekly topic and how it relates to motherhood.


Each Sunday, we will meet for two hours. We will begin gathered together in circle to introduce that week’s topic. Mothers and daughters will then part ways to explore the topics. At the end of our time together, we will rejoin the two groups to share insights and reflections.


Week 1: Finding Our Voice

Week 2: Expressing Our Creativity

Week 3: Following Our Intuition

Week 4: Honoring Our Bodies


To encourage integration of the weekly topics, we will provide suggested questions to answer in a shared journal at home. Our hope is that this journal allows the space for mothers and daughters to communicate openly and authentically with each other while reflecting deeper on each week’s topic.


Shanti O'Connor is a nationally certified counselor, a licensed teacher, a past life  hypnotherapist, Pranic Healer, Reiki Master, TRE (tension/trauma release exercises) provider and a postpartum specialist.

Shanti runs retreats for men and women, groups and circles for women and moms. She teaches meditation classes, chakra healing classes and spiritual exploration  classes for kids. She owns the non-profit Bend Birth Connection. She also owns and runs Rooted&Open and The Hive.

Ashley Grewe is a mother, teacher, and business owner. She is passionate about holistic education as a powerful tool to empower children to be their best, authentic selves through programs that are heart-centered and purpose-driven. The driving force behind each class is to allow children to better understand and love themselves so that they can become future advocates for humans and the planet.

As an educator, she’s worked with children in public, private, charter and holistic schools in the United States and abroad for ten years. She is a licensed Oregon Elementary Teacher, a 200-hour RYT, and has been trained to teach children yoga, mindfulness, and food education through Life Project Education, Mindful Schools, and Pure Joy Planet.


We will meet each Sunday from April 28th to May 19th from 2-4 PM at The Hive.

Cost is $80 per person for the series, sliding scale, and includes one journal per family.

Best suited for young women ages 10-15 and their mother (or mother figure).

The Hive is located at 205 NW Franklin Avenue in Bend.

kids yoga
yoga girl


Private Classes and Lessons

We are honored to support our local Bend community and enjoy working with schools, sports teams, and groups of any kind. 

Rates vary by needs - please call (218) 340-3035 or email to find out more.