Modern research shows that the brain is not static after early adulthood, but a vibrant and changing organ which changes as we encounter new experiences. It is therefore possible to change unfavourable habits and learn new favourable ones but as the saying goes...practice makes perfect and it takes time!!
Through regular training of the mind it is also possible to observe difficult emotions and not react, resulting in children having more space to respond differently.
Self-esteem and self confidence can grow through practices which involve growing kindness towards ourselves & others.
Some of the skills our learners have developed are their enhanced ability to regulate their emotions, they are better at accepting transient thoughts and feelings and have increased their attention span.
Throughout the course the children soak up the concept of mindfulness through games, movement activities and writing exercises. The students are encouraged to bring a sense of curiosity to every task being eating, listening to their own breath or kindness exercises.
At the beginning, children like adults find sitting still and paying attention to sounds, their breath, body sensations etc hard work and they often don’t understand the point of doing so. As the course progresses the penny drops. One student commented “When I had my 1st mindfulness class I thought 'what is this!?’ and laughed at it, I now realise it helps me calm down and I've learned something new”.
Even the most wriggly and disengaged students with time can sit still for a 10 minute practice, and later express how they felt about the experience
Designed for 7-11 year olds
16 hour programme
Delivered over 8 weeks
How the brain grows and changes & that they can learn new habits
To improve their concentration & focus their attention
Be aware of their feelings & emotions and not be controlled by them
To be more grateful for everyday things
That kindness can be an antidote to suffering
When I had my 1st mindfulness class I thought 'what is this!?’ and laughed at it, I now realise it helps me calm down and I've learned something new
Mindfulness is introduced in a fun way by exploring what is the mind and why would you want to train it? Through videos & experience, students can see how easy the mind can get distracted and if we want to train our mind we must focus our attention. The children also become familiar with Mindfulness of breathing and practice sitting still for approximately 5 minutes.
The novelty of paying attention to their breath can start to wane, so the next few lessons seek to re-ignite their curiosity by directing their attention towards mindful eating (normally chocolate) and mindfulness movement (qi gong movements plus musical statues). The children also become acquainted with a concept called the mindful attitude, noticing without reacting.
By this point the penny has dropped and the majority actually enjoy sitting still for longer periods of time, around 15 mins. Towards the end of the course there is a great deal of work on focusing on what we have in our lives and not what we don’t have, being a good friend and growing kindness towards others as well as ourselves.