Children and Teen Courses

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More and more people throughout the world are seeking concentration, purification and peace of mind through the practice of Vipassana meditation. The ideal time to begin the first steps of this mental training is in childhood when children as young as eight years old can easily learn the technique of Anapana meditation.

Before registering to a course, please read the General Information, the Code of Conduct and the course Schedule below on this page.

For more information, visit the International Children's Website at


To sit or to serve a children or teen course, please register on-line on the Course Schedule Page:



After clicking on "Apply" beside the course date, you will be asked to choose between "Attend" or "Serve" the course.

All important information on the cours is also available on this on-line application form.

General information

Vipassana means "to see things as they really are" and is a logical process of mental purification through self-observation. Many come to Vipassana later in their lives, wishing they had found this technique sooner because it is so effective in learning the art of living peacefully and harmoniously.

The ideal time to begin the first steps of this mental training is in childhood when children as young as eight years old can easily learn the technique of Anapana meditation. Anapana is the first step in the practice of Vipassana meditation. It is the observation of natural, normal respiration, as it comes in and as it goes out. Anapana is a simple technique that helps develop concentration of the mind. It is easy to learn, objective and scientific. Observation of the breath is the ideal object for meditation because it is always available, and it is completely non-sectarian. Anapana is very different from techniques that are based on artificial regulation of the breath. There are no rites or rituals involved in the practice or presentation of Anapana and it is presented in a non-sectarian format. This approach is traced back to the Buddha, who rediscovered and taught this technique 2500 years ago. The Buddha never taught a sectarian religion; he taught Dhamma—the way to liberation—which is universal. Following this tradition, this technique is presented in a totally non-sectarian approach. For this reason, it has had a profound appeal to people of all backgrounds, of every religion or no religion, from every part of the world.

Besides helping them to calm and concentrate their minds, Anapana helps young people to better understand themselves and how their minds work. As they learn to calm and concentrate their minds, they gain mastery over their impulses and actions. They develop an inner strength that helps them to choose right and appropriate actions over wrong actions. This is a natural byproduct of the technique. For this reason, Anapana provides them with a tool to deal with the fears, anxieties, and pressures of childhood and adolescence. Because of its simplicity, they find the technique easy to practice and understand and they appreciate its scientific and universal nature.

Over the past 17 years, hundreds of Anapana courses have been conducted exclusively for children and teenagers around the world. These courses have yielded substantial benefits for the thousands of young people who have attended them. Many of them have experienced a positive change in their outlook, behavior and attitude. Many have found their ability to concentrate has improved and that their memory has strengthened. And above all, these young people have acquired a tool that is of immense value to them for the rest of their lives.

Children and teenagers are, by nature, active and enthusiastic, with an eagerness to learn and explore. For this reason, it is appropriate to offer them an opportunity to explore themselves and their mind with all its hidden faculties, latent abilities and subtle complexities. Learning Anapana plants a wholesome interest in self-introspection and meditation, which may open an entirely new dimension of life for them later on.

Participants are grouped by ages. The children’s course is for children ages 8 to 12 years old. The teenagers’course is for teens ages 13 to 17 years old. Courses are generally one day long. Parents or guardians who have completed a ten-day course with S.N.Goenka or his assistant teachers are welcome to apply to serve during the course, or to participate in a meditation program for old students if offered. They can register to serve or to participate in a meditation and service program for old students. They will be following a different schedule of meditation than the children and will have opportunities to do some work at the centre. Other parents and guardians who are dropping off their children are welcome to stay during the registration time but will then leave the center until the course is over.

During the course, meditation instructions are given by S.N.Goenka via audio and videocassette. In addition, there may be other activities such as art, story telling, games and journal writing. On teenagers’courses there are longer periods of meditation and of silence. On all these courses, children are assigned group leaders who support and guide them and make sure that they are comfortable and well taken care of during the course.

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Code of Conduct

Learning to practice Anapana meditation is very valuable because it helps you to become a better person. Practicing Anapana meditation will help you to train your mind to become concentrated and calm.This will make your mind strong so that you will be able to avoid doing or saying things that are hurtful or harmful to yourself and to others. This strength of mind will help you to feel happier and more peaceful. Practicing Anapana and learning to concentrate will help you to become the master of your mind. To help you succeed in practicing Anapana meditation it is important that you do your best to follow the instructions that you will be given during the course. While you are at the course, it is also important that you agree to follow the Code of Conduct written below. In the same way that a house needs a good foundation to support it, so the practice of Anapana needs a good foundation. This good foundation for Anapana is built by following the Code of Conduct. It will help you to avoid performing actions that are harmful or hurtful to yourself and others.

During the first meditation session at the course you will be asked to repeat the following five vows or precepts. These are written in bold and underneath each is an explanation. Please read them carefully so that you will understand what you are saying when the time comes:


I shall abstain from killing.
I promise to try to treat all beings kindly and not kill them or harm them in any way.


I shall abstain from stealing.
I promise to take only what is given to me and not take anything which belongs to others without permission.


I shall abstain from a life of misconduct.
I promise to treat other boys and girls as if they were my brothers or sisters or best friends.


I shall abstain from speaking lies, harsh words, backbiting, etc. which will harm others.
I promise to speak truthfully, kindly and gently, and not to tell lies or to say hurtful things to anybody or about anybody.


I shall abstain from taking any intoxicant.
I promise not to take any alcohol, drugs or intoxicants, but to keep my mind clear.

At the bottom of your application form, when you sign your name, it means that you agree to
try and follow this Code of Conduct as best you can while at the course.

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9:15 am


9:40 am

Guided tour of the centre with group leader


Course Orientation Talk

10:30 am






12 noon

Meditation / Meeting period with the teacher /Activities


Lunch and activities












End of the course, snack and parent’s arrival

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Children's and Teenagers' Course Committee 
810, Côte Azélie
Montebello (Québec) 
J0V 1L0

Phone: 514-481-3504 
Fax: 514-879-3437