Written by Allegra Johnson, Secondary Education Coordinator + Yoga in the Schools Instructor
Yoga in the Schools Instructors have their mindfulness lessons ready to go!
"Let your peace in the present moment inspire students to find peace in theirs." - Allegra Johnson
One of my favorite things about practicing mindfulness is the simplicity.
While mindful practices are not always easy to initiate- for me, because of a stress response, stubbornness, or mindlessness- they are simple.
I need nothing from myself, others, or the world to practice them. I have everything I need to be mindful and recognize abundance.
Seemingly every time I practice mindfulness, I am surprised by the ease of life, the gifts of the present moment, and all that I have to be grateful for, even when confronted with a challenging situation.
I am so grateful for the teachers who embodied and exemplified mindful practices.
They led me to experiencing the present moment, teaching from this peace.
It is through the continued practice of mindfulness that I and so many students find this peace when we need it most.
Being mindful doesn’t always come naturally to our brains.
Years of thought patterns, overstimulation, and underutilization have created habits of mindlessness, multitasking, overindulging, and numbing.
Moreover, our 50,000 - 80,000 thoughts are predominantly negative and usually rooted in the past or future.
This part of our brain wants to keep us safe and to understand the world; however, our brains crave a break!
Both kids and adults need time to slow down, process and rest by being mindfully focused on the present moment, which fosters learning and connection.
This is where practice comes in.
Every time we center our attention on the present we are building our brain’s ability to choose mindfulness more easily and readily.
At Challenge to Change Inc., we teach mindful practices including Breathwork, Movement, Sensory Experiences, Guided Mindfulness, and Brain and Heart Power.
One of the ways we share these practices is through our online Yoga + Mindfulness Resource Center, with over 100 different mindful resources including breath card decks, posters, worksheets, breath techniques, videos for brain breaks, self-regulation tools, and much more.
Supporting Teachers, Parents and Families with Mindful Tools
If you are an educator, you have the beautiful responsibility to create the best classroom environment you can.
The resources on the portal can be a powerful tool to help feel confident in your ability to notice where your students are emotionally, and assist them to become their best selves.
Students, like adults, desire the feelings of peace and clarity that come with practicing mindfulness. Likewise, we might struggle to choose to practice this without prompting and guidance.
Breath practices have a powerful way of aiding students’ ability to focus and be more attentive during instructional time.
Our breath practice videos found on the portal lead students through calming, concentration, and energizing breath practices to help set themselves up for the next activity throughout the day.
For example, teachers have used these practices to prepare students for a test and to help them transition to a calming state following an energetic activity.
Our mudra cards, another resource on the portal, can be used to help students regulate and navigate their emotions.
Mudras help students to check in with where they are and decide which mudra they need at this moment, giving students the space to practice what it feels like to be aware of and manage their emotions.
Benefits of the Yoga + Mindfulness Resource Center
If you are an educator, we know your days are not without challenges.
We understand your days have demands too big with too little time to meet them.
Here are just a few of the benefits of utilizing the Yoga + Mindfulness Resource Center throughout the day:
Provides a brain break throughout the day for students and teachers
Helps provide self-regulation and co-regulation opportunities
Improves mood and relationships in the classroom
It is so important for students to have educators who are present and mindful.
This models to them how mindfulness can help them feel present, at peace, and strong enough to face a challenge.
These resources were designed so that you press play and learn alongside your students.
Even better, we have customized Resource Centers for:
A Davenport elementary school teacher said, “I have used [the Yoga +Mindfulness Resource Center] when I need a moment to regulate. I will do something with my kiddos to help calm myself down.”
Practice these skills with students.
Let your peace in the present moment inspire students to find peace in theirs.
Let your dedication to this work change hearts and minds.
Let your practice of mindfulness show in actions and words the gift of being truly present and how to share this presence with those around you.
Be well. Be peace.