The morning of August 23, brought together a wide array of 35 educators and health professionals from across the State committed to supporting mindfulness practices in children, parents and staff. Four mini-presentations from a k-8 principal, Spanish middle school teacher, guidance counselor and mindfulness teacher described successes in weaving mindfulness throughout a school and/or school district. We were inspired by seeing participants actively engaging in sharing stories, and information on ways they are implementing mindfulness in Michigan schools and higher education institutions. A groundswell of skilled teachers in mindfulness is bubbling up in our Michigan communities!
Daniel guided 40 of us over the day and half workshop in nourishing our own personal practice and learning a variety of playful mindful and compassionate teaching activities to use in the classroom. Participants greatly appreciated the wisdom Daniel brought to bear on sensitive questions as well as the rich discussions we had related to trauma, racial bias and inequity. Following the training, we discovered that Michigan will be represented in the inaugural year long training program that Daniel and other mindfulness faculty are launching to develop transformational school leadership. We are aware that at least two participants from this workshop were accepted into the program!
We gathered with 40 participants for a wonderful morning of guided mindfulness practice. Half of us stayed for an afternoon of enlightening conversation and engaging presentation. Donna Russotto, our guest educator from Escanaba, demonstrated how to engage teachers in mindfully and empathically meeting student needs, using a creative approach that involved identifying and matching functions of the triune brain.
In August, 23 participants engaged in a morning of restorative practices followed by a day-and-a-half of learning and practicing specific mindfulness activities for use with elementary and middle school students. The program was enthusiastically received and the ideas shared by the community of learners were equally impressive. We are excited to develop this community into an ongoing network of support. Join us at our November practice retreat, Restoring our Balance: Begin Again and/or attend our meet-up afterward to share how we can grow this work together.