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Mindfulness

Mindfulness is a skill for wellbeing which is taught at Iona College.

Mindfulness can help young people improve focus and reduce stress, supporting them to foster positive relationships and develop academic excellence.

Students in the Intermediate School (Year 7/8) complete the Pause, Breathe, Smile programme from Mindfulness Education Group NZ, and students in Year 9 complete the .b programme (pronounced dot-be) from the Mindfulness in Schools Project UK.

Here are the 8 lessons from the Pause, Breathe, Smile programme:

  • Lesson 1: Introducing core mindfulness practices for mind-body integration
  • Lesson 2: Exploring happiness and learning how our actions impact wellbeing
  • Lesson 3: Using creative role-play for looking at the world with the important wellbeing and learning characteristics of curiosity and interest
  • Lesson 4: Recognising that emotions are felt in the body and learning how to self-regulate with mindfulness
  • Lesson 5: Learning about the brain and how to settle scattered and unhelpful thinking
  • Lesson 6: Fostering kindness and compassion toward self and others
  • Lesson 7: Exploring the relationships between self, others and the natural world
  • Lesson 8: This lesson encourages student reflection, group sharing, and an agreement to continue fostering presence, kindness and curiosity in the classroom

Here are the 10 lessons from the .b programme:

  • Introduction: what is mindfulness and its benefits
  • Lesson 1: Training our faculty of attention
  • Lesson 2: Recognising different mind states and learning how to calm our minds
  • Lesson 3: Recognising and managing worry
  • Lesson 4: Mindful eating, and cultivating present moment awareness and considered responses to difficulties
  • Lesson 5: Cultivating mindful movement, mindfulness in sport and music, and bringing mindfulness into daily activities
  • Lesson 6: Observing our thoughts and developing strategies for coping with difficult thoughts
  • Lesson 7: Understanding stress and how to cope with difficult emotions
  • Lesson 8: Understanding and practising gratitude
  • Lesson 9: Summary and continuity

The following comments from students who have completed a course in mindfulness at Iona College reveal the benefits from practicing mindfulness:

“Mindfulness has helped me stay calm and get through tough friend situations and deal with stress better. I has helped me to stop and think before I get upset over something and instead think of things that make me happy and I am grateful for.”

 

 “The course was very interesting and interactive. I learnt lots about the way my brain works which even just by knowing this has helped me to feel less worried about the small things.”

 

“I now try to be more grateful for what I have. Now I feel happy with who I am and my life in general. I now wouldn’t change anything.”

 

 “There is nothing better than waking up in the morning and smiling. Mindfulness has allowed me to clear my mind, have better sleeps and become a lot happier.”

 

“My mum made me do mindfulness for the past year but it never affected me until I did this course and learnt about the science. I feel like I now understand and have actually become happier and more empathetic towards people and myself.”