Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom." - Viktor Frankl
What does it mean to be mindful?
Simply put, mindfulness means paying attention. Paying attention to how we are feeling in a moment and increasing our awareness to outside factors that impact our current state. It can help us feel less stressed, more calm, happier and more ready to learn.
What is a mindful body?
A mindful body is relaxed and focused. If seated in a chair, a mindful body can include:
back straight, off of the back of the seat
feet flat on floor
hands resting on legs
shoulders back and down
deep breaths in and out
When can you practice being mindful?
Transitions (i.e. in the classroom, starting homework, starting a new sport/activity, etc.)
Before bed or first thing in the morning
When beginning to feel a big emotion (i.e. nervous, frustrated, angry, etc.).
What will students Do during their Mindful Body Lesson?
Students will be asked to practice sitting in a mindful way and will engage in a Mindful Minute. This includes sitting with eyes closed and attempting to remain present and attempt to think only about the "here and now".
We will read the story Peaceful Piggy Meditation by Kerry Lee MacLean
Students will be taught how to take a mindful break with a Finger Fiddle.
Students will learn how to take a Rainbow Walk through their classroom as a mindful activity they can use anywhere (Kindergarten students will not yet be taught the Rainbow Walk activity but instead will be guided through the Swaying Trees activity below).
Finger Fiddle Activity
Sit or stand tall. Press the fingertips of both hands together in front of your chest, fingers spread.
While keeping your other fingers touching, tap your thumbs together 5 times and whisper "tap, tap, tap, tap, tap".
Repeat with all fingers working to your pinky finger and back.
Finish with three deep breaths.
Rainbow Walk Activity
A Rainbow Walk can be a quick and easy way to take a mindful break anywhere you are.
Slowly and quietly walk through your current setting (i.e. the playground, the classroom, etc.)
Starting with the color red, locate one item for each color of the rainbow.
When completed, take a deep breath and check to see if you feel more calm and ready.
Repeat as needed.
SwayinG Trees Activity
Stand tall with your feet apart, balancing your weight evenly.
Imagine you are a tree in the wind and your arms are the branches.
Gently swing your arms side to side like swaying branches.
As the "wind" gets stronger, move your arms faster but in control.
The "wind" becomes so great it knocks you forward and you bend at the waist.
With your head hanging freely, swing your arms from side to side while bent forward.
Slowly rise as the wind becomes a "breeze".
Slowly stop your arms and finish with three mindful breaths.
Link to Mindful Teachers: site offering resources and activities.
Link to Mindful Schools: site offering videos and books for supporting a mindful school.