Mindfulness in Schools


This past week, the New York Times ran an article on a Piedmont elementary school which has been practicing “mindfulness” with students. They actually have a name for it: mindfulness training. It’s hard to imagine any of the schools I attended — in this country or abroad — incorporating anything remotely eastern or spiritual into a curriculum.

Given the number of hyperactive and disruptive children I grew up with, it would have been a godsend, for them, and for their teachers. My guess is regular practice could help reduce potential violence as well.

The mindfulness training are a series of stress-reducing techniques drawn from Buddhist meditation and some schools are inserting them in between reading and spelling tests. Said a Dr. Haick who was interviewed for the article, “If we can help children slow down and think, they have the answers within themselves.” It’s not far from the feng shui techniques I talked about in a recent blog post and the benefits of reducing clutter, and increasing clarity for enhanced idea generation and creativity.

A few examples of where this kind of training tapped into a very emotional space for these kids included one child breaking down over the loss of a grandparent and another over a melted lip balm. While one on the surface is clearly deeper and more painful, the latter could be connected to something deeply personal that merely presented itself through an object.

The idea that they’re giving this a try with groups of children across the country is a huge step forward. Let’s hope the trend continues.

Renee Blodgett
Renee Blodgett is the founder of We Blog the World. The site combines the magic of an online culture and travel magazine with a global blog network and has contributors from every continent in the world. Having lived in 10 countries and explored nearly 80, she is an avid traveler, and a lover, observer and participant in cultural diversity.

She is also the CEO and founder of Magic Sauce Media, a new media services consultancy focused on viral marketing, social media, branding, events and PR. For over 20 years, she has helped companies from 12 countries get traction in the market. Known for her global and organic approach to product and corporate launches, Renee practices what she pitches and as an active user of social media, she helps clients navigate digital waters from around the world. Renee has been blogging for over 16 years and regularly writes on her personal blog Down the Avenue, Huffington Post, BlogHer, We Blog the World and other sites. She was ranked #12 Social Media Influencer by Forbes Magazine and is listed as a new media influencer and game changer on various sites and books on the new media revolution. In 2013, she was listed as the 6th most influential woman in social media by Forbes Magazine on a Top 20 List.

Her passion for art, storytelling and photography led to the launch of Magic Sauce Photography, which is a visual extension of her writing, the result of which has led to producing six photo books: Galapagos Islands, London, South Africa, Rome, Urbanization and Ecuador.

Renee is also the co-founder of Traveling Geeks, an initiative that brings entrepreneurs, thought leaders, bloggers, creators, curators and influencers to other countries to share and learn from peers, governments, corporations, and the general public in order to educate, share, evaluate, and promote innovative technologies.
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