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Mindfulness with Shane from Khan Academy

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Over the past month, students have been learning about mindfulness from Shane Keller, a Khan Academy employee, during Wellness. In their first session, students practiced being more aware of their space, their bodies, and their thinking. Students also had an opportunity to practice mindfulness around eating. Shane instructed students to eat a slice of apple slowly and then reflect on what they noticed, such as texture and taste. Students have learned mindful breathing and how to do a body scan to notice and respond to feelings.

Last week, Shane had students try to solve a geometry challenge in order to bring up negative emotions, such as frustration or embarrassment, so students could recognize them and brainstorm how to appropriately respond to them. Before the Thanksgiving break, students practiced being even more aware of their bodies as they walked deliberately around the school space, thinking about the motion behind each step. Students have reported trying habits they’ve learned from Shane at home and during free play. The group has gotten noticeably better at focusing with Shane and participating in mindful meditation. Many of the older students have expressed a desire to continue practicing mindfulness and to learn more techniques for living a mindful life.

Thanksgiving is a great opportunity to bring the discussion around mindfulness home to your whole family. Ask students what they’ve learned about being mindful and what a mindful Thanksgiving dinner might look like.