When our school began this journey, even if I had an unlimited budget to address the health and well-being of students and staff, and could ensure the sustainability of the long-term benefits of Mindfulness in schools, I would never have estimated how invaluable this has been. It has allowed staff members to address their stress in healthy, transformative ways. Consequently, our students have been validated, listened to, and supported in making positive changes in their behavior. Behavioral referrals have significantly decreased, however more importantly, now the children and adults in our school truly listen to one another and respond to one another’s needs. The time spent recognizing emotions and practicing ways to acknowledge and shape them has changed how we relate to one another within our school culture. I am convinced it has been integral to our ability to nearly eliminate the achievement gaps between all categories of learners in our school.
“Mindfulness changes your life because it calms you down. It helps you focus when you are relaxed. When I can’t fall asleep I take slow breaths and relax my body like we do in yoga.”
“I know we are all better people because of this school year. Students will carry what they have learned into their future classrooms and lives. Mindfulness and yoga are strategies to live a calmer, less reactionary, joyful life. I’m grateful MCPASD embraces these practices.”
“Yoga and mindfulness changes our lives. We have a mindful minute at school during transitions. This helps us get ourselves ready for the next subject. It clears us from all distractions so we can focus and get it done!”