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mindfulness

Mindfulness and education

We invite you to edit, add and contribute to this page. To see how easy it is to join and contribute, please read this article on the ukedchat website.

What is mindfulness?

Mindfulness is an ancient eastern practice which is very relevant to all our lives today. Mindfulness is a very simple concept - paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgemental - just appreciating that particular moment.

Mindfulness does not conflict with any beliefs or traditions, whether religious, cultural or scientific. It is simply a practical way to notice thoughts, physical sensations, sights, sounds, smells - anything we would not normally notice. The actual skills might be simple, but because it is so different from how our minds normally behave, it takes a lot of practice, self-discipline and determination.

Mindfulness might simply be described as choosing and learning our focus of attention. For many, we can seem to go through life on automatic pilot. Mindfulness can help in breaking old habits of thoughts that are often on helpful and can lead to a worsening mood.

The more we practice mindfulness we will notice that our attention goes back to our activity continually, noticing sensations from outside and within us.

Why is mindfulness useful for teachers and students to explore in an educational context?

Mindfulness is great for helping cope with anxiety, depression, or in a bid to improve overall emotional wellbeing. Stopping, paying attention to the here and now, along with realising our own unconscious reactions (see more on metacognition here). Mindfulness can help students (and teachers) at times of exam stress, as well as helping during times of anxiety or low mood. However, general daily mindfulness activities can support the emotional wellbeing of everybody, taking time out against the general hustle and bustle of daily life.

How can mindfulness be used in schools to help teachers and students?

By providing everyone within an educational community with tools, activities and resources to become more mindful means that all can benefit, and although mindfulness exercises don't have to be incorporated during the busy school day, sharing such exercises allow individuals to explore time and a place where they are comfortable to do so. From the early years, right through to university level, mindfulness exercises can be suitably guided, without the outlay of expensive resources. For example:

  • LEGO can be a great toy for stress relief for students during exam times (link), and such an activity can be linked to mindfulness, as the experience of creating with LEGO can help an individual become mindful of what they are trying to achieve, and concentrating on something else to distract from the noise that can surround.

We invite you to edit, add and contribute to this page. To see how easy it is to join and contribute, please read this article on the ukedchat website.

mindfulness.txt · Last modified: 12/02/2019 15:45 by digicoled