To change behaviours of students, staff and parents, the school’s culture needs to reflect one of mindfulness. This can be created in several ways but broadly involves communication, role modelling and whole-school activities.
Taking time to meditate or breathe before or during staff meetings.
Many organisations lead a 5-10 minute meditation before staff meetings. Schools can also commit to doing some deep breaths before a meetings commence.
Using mindfulness to work with young people or staff who are emotionally triggered.
There are many techniques available for dealing with challenging behaviour in a mindful way. Schools may select a number of strategies to use throughout the school when dealing with behaviour issues.
3-10 minute daily practice over the PA system.
Create a school wide commitment for doing one daily meditation over the PA. This can be done at the beginning of the year in school assemblies.
Electing a member of staff or student to lead a daily mindfulness or meditation practice over the schools PA system. You can choose a recorded meditation from MMA or Smiling Mind or have a staff member or student deliver the meditation.
Sustainable way of embedding mindfulness
Mindfulness is linked to the values program to ensure its sustainability and to demonstrate its clear linkage to the school's current activities
Look for ways to link mindfulness to the school's current Values (or similar) program. As every school will have a different set of values or way of embedding values, this integration process will look different in every school. Ideas for linking values to mindfulness include changing some of the values messages to reflect mindful practice.
Committed meditation after lunch or recess.
Create a school wide commitment for delivering a 5-10 minute practice after all breaks. Young people can take part in some quite time to calm and prepare for learning.
Take part in MMA's Body Breath meditation if there is not much available time. For longer meditations a recording can be played or custom meditation can be delivered by a staff member. Links to suggested recorded meditations:
Continual promotion of mindfulness messages to families
Short reminders about mindfulness are added to weekly or fortnightly newsletters or family communication channels
Use MMA newsletter items
Easy fast and effective practice.
This practice can be adopted school-wide with little training. It's purpose is to calm and reset. This can be done before dealing with issues, after breaks, in meetings, or on-the-spot throughout the day.
Weekly and daily reminders for students and staff
Tips and reminders placed in the diary or planners before being printed/published by the school
School-wide wellbeing focused month.
Dedicating a month in each school year to wellbeing. The month can be advertised to parents, staff and young people and might include a mental health style activity everyday of the month to give young people some understanding of the different tools they can access for personal support.
School might engage external facilitators to lead yoga, meditation and mindfulness workshops. Staff and young people might dedicate more time each day to mindfulness and meditation activities. The school might choose this month to learn about emotional regulation and mental health techniques.
Ongoing regular reminders to the whole-school community of mindfulness
If using PA announcements etc, the Principal or Deputy integrates mindfulness reminders on a regular basis
Students witnessing adults role modelling mindfulness
External agencies reinforcing mindfulness messages
If you would like recommendations please contact MMA
Activities offered to support students who may require additional social or emotional support
Chess clubs, meditation groups, colouring or yoga sessions etc