Our Lady of Mercy Primary is a values-focused co-ed Catholic school. The staff are dedicated to providing a ‘loving, supportive, and collaborative learning environment’, one which not only encourages the students to enjoy learning to their full potential but also develops their character and sense of self.
With such beautiful and holistic ideals it is no surprise that Our Lady of Mercy chose to take part in Mindful Education Training in 2020, together with Mindful Meditation Australia. The results were fantastic, with measurable benefits for staff and students alike.
‘I really enjoyed the program even though I find mediation difficult. Teaching our students meditation will be giving them a fantastic skill that will empower them in all aspects of their lives. Many students at our school need this and I believe it will be so beneficial to them. There is nothing more powerful than mindfulness to help them stay calm, regulate and refocus their brain, no matter how big or small the situation. It is something I want to start doing daily and pass onto my own children.’
Schools can be places of high levels of pressure and stress. With many hours a day spent absorbing information, broken up by stimulating break times, it can be very difficult for a child to manage their behaviour.
Mindfulness improves the students’ ability to self-regulate their behaviours. This creates a calmer child, and in turn, a calmer and more focused learning environment.
By introducing a mindfulness program into schools, the school becomes a place focused not only on the academic outcomes of the children, but the genuine overall wellbeing of those children. Improvements happen across the board, from the confidence of staff and children alike, to behaviours, learning, and mental health.
Read more about mindfulness and meditation in schools here.
Together with Mindful Meditation Australia, Our Lady of Mercy decided to create 12 mindfulness goals, across two phases. Staff and educators tailored a whole school approach by identifying the key areas where they could bring mindfulness into the school.
This plan was developed with the support and guidance of Mindful Meditation Australia.
The chosen focus areas are:
Please see the infographics below to further explore the practices put in place.
By choosing both long and short term goals, the primary school had put in place further strategies to develop and ideas to implement. They have continued to use mindfulness as an integral part of the school culture, and encourage both staff and students to be mindful in everything they do.
‘It was not too much to take on so I think something small we can change will have big long term effects’
Our Lady of Mercy also understands the importance of refresher courses to ensure all staff are aware and competent of mindfulness best practice, so that they can continue to facilitate their environment of calm and conscious behaviours.
‘I think it was fantastic and will be a great initiative to implement in the school. I do think it will only be successful if everyone is on board and able to implement and follow through inside and outside of the classroom.’
If you want to learn more about Mindful Meditation Australia and how we work with schools, businesses, and families, read all about our organisation here.
“Thank you again so much for coming to Our Lady of Mercy last week, we found the day to be so beneficial and inspiring and know you would be proud of the mindfulness and meditation going on in our classrooms already!” ~ Meagan Zanetti Assistant Principal