What Do You Want With All Your Heart?
February 21, 2017
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Mindfulness in a Phoenix Art Classroom

I’ve been teaching art since 2008, always trying to implement yoga and/or meditation into the schools because we’ve heard about the benefits. Although the administration may know the benefits, they’re so focused on test results, they forget that if we really put effort into a daily MINDFULNESS PRACTICE, those tests scores could certainly rise (although I’m not a Common Core fan). However, I am a Student Fan! Nothing makes me happier than children getting some down time, play time, art time…luckily my kiddos get one-hour a week. So I let them create their little hearts out while maintaining a safe atmosphere with books, magazine, art images and supplies to support the art they wish to make.

So, back to mindfulness…

Here’s just one excerpt from an article found in Time Magazine:

“Compared to the kids in the social responsibility program, children with the mindful intervention had 15% better math scores, showed 24% more social behaviors, were 24% less aggressive and perceived themselves as 20% more prosocial. They outperformed their peers in cognitive control, stress levels, emotional control, optimism, empathy, mindfulness and aggression.

The program also may have had an unintended effect—one the researchers didn’t measure, but now want to. “Anecdotally, teachers tell us that the program helped them calm down more—by doing the program and integrating these mindful attention practices and being more aware and thinking more about others, that they actually become less stressed,” Schonert-Reichl says. “That has huge implications, and a further area of research is needed.”

These stats? I see them working most in the social behaviors and loving to OM while sitting crossed legged either on their seat at their desk or they can choose to sit on the floor. What I have found in the last three weeks: the kiddos need the “down” time. I want them to NOT think for just 5 minutes unless, of course, they are contemplating their art work or simple thoughts of just not having to think about how fast a lesson has to go.

We need to slow down in our fast-paced society. So everyday, we:

  • walk calmly into the classroom
  • take our assigned seat
  • sit in lotus
  • sit in silence
  • proceed to art assignment
  • have fun creating

So it is…5 minutes for each child grades K-8!

For future evidence on Mindfulness and Meditation, visit The David Lynch Foundation. He’s doing phenomenal work with inner-city children


Take a look at this video & decide for yourself

Transcendental Meditation (TM)

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