Fall 2018 semester notes

img_1134I incorporated mindfulness practice is all classes including advisory & enrichment. I either started class with a mindful practice, a check-in question or a mindful visualization. In afternoon advisory class I sometimes alternated between a mindful practice and a yoga movement check-out activity. Some days I would ask students to vote on which activity they wanted to practice. Towards the end of the semester, I started having students alternate between facing in and facing out for the practice. It seemed that this allowed students to create their own personal space and I felt that the overall atmosphere became quieter when they weren’t all facing in the same direction. At the middle school level, I also allowed students to choose whether to sit in a chair, on the floor or even to lay down. I didn’t offer this choice to high school students. Maybe this is something to offer next semester and see how students choose their mindful position.

My students were 7th, 8th & 9th graders. For the most part, everyone participated willingly. There were a couple 8th-grade boys who openly expressed not wanting to do the practice. However, most students complied and willingly participated. I used a variety of card sets that incorporated mindful activities, yoga postures, EQ questions, intention-setting questions, and social-emotional activities & questions. Some days, students signed up to choose what we would do to start class. Most days, I chose because students were uncomfortable coming up with their own activity/question. The sets of cards were made available to the students who had signed up to lead our check-in/practice.

I did not ask for much sharing after mindful practice. When the check-in was question-based, students were encouraged to participate, of course, since this is the intent. However, after a mindfulness practice activity (sitting, visualization, breath awareness), I gently allowed for sharing and I found that students preferred not to. Last year I had more sharing from students. This semester I suppose I decided to allow for more introspection / personal reflection instead.

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