Mindfulness facilitates learning by providing students with tools to focus their attention, self-regulate, and center themselves within the classroom. Focusing on the present moment helps students become more available, less distracted, and better able to make meaningful connections.
Jon Kabat-Zinn, the founder of mindfulness- based stress reduction (MBSR) and author of several books on the subject, defines mindfulness as the practice of paying attention in a particular way—on purpose, in the present moment, and without judgment.
Mindfulness is not a religious practice, although it is compatible with many spiritual, sacred, and philosophical traditions. More than anything else, the practice of mindfulness is a practice of compassion toward oneself and others. This can ease feelings of self-doubt and have a profound impact on skill development, social relationships, processing, understanding, and learning in all areas of the curriculum.
The practice of mindfulness is a cornerstone of the Acting with Purpose™ learning series and the companion Including Everyone™ integration materials. Additionally, a Mindful Curriculum™ package enables educators in all areas of the curriculum to practice and support the benefits of mindfulness in the school community.
The Mindful Curriculum kit is available as a supplemental item and includes:
- Parent information about the value of mindfulness in school
- 24 Mindfulness Practice Cards that help students learn to relax and self-regulate
- Scripts and PD to lead conversations about character and personal responsibility
- Manipulatives to support student choice and ownership of self-centering practices