We received this news from Marc A. Meyer at The Hawn Foundation, and gladly republish it here.
Current research demonstrates that students’ comfort level in the classroom and schoolyard has a direct impact on how and how well they learn. As all experienced teachers know, real learning and understanding takes place in nurturing classrooms within safe schools. The importance of low stress learning environments and focused attention among students is paramount to effective education.
As the Hawn Foundation’s signature educational program, MindUP is a set of social, emotional, and self-regulatory strategies and skills developed for pre-kindergarten through eighth-grade students to cultivate wellbeing and emotional balance. MindUP provides a framework for teachers to learn strategies to boost students’ social and emotional competencies and to create an optimistic classroom. Teachers can more easily manage their classroom, maintain an environment more conducive to student learning, and find greater professional and personal fulfillment.
MindUP is anchored in the fields of cognitive neuroscience, mindful education, social and emotional learning, positive psychology, and evidence-based teaching practices. It has been successfully implemented by nearly 1000 teachers throughout North America. In February 2011, Scholastic, Inc. will publish the MindUP curricula in three developmentally appropriate volumes.
Through a series of fifteen easy-to-implement lessons, The Hawn Foundation’s MindUP program provides teachers and students with opportunities to cultivate self-awareness and focused attention. By increasing optimism, resiliency, and wellbeing, MindUP can help children
• Reduce stress and anxiety;
• Improve concentration, focus and academic performance;
• Sharpen awareness of their environment and themselves by paying attention to what they sense and feel;
• Strengthen the positive human qualities students possess, including their capacity to understand others’ perspectives and to be empathic, helpful, and kind;
• Foster an understand of brain science linking emotions, thoughts, and behaviors;
• Manage emotions and behavior more effectively;
• Reduce peer-to-peer conflict.
In brief, MindUP supports what we know about how children learn, and it enhances their abilities to become independent, successful learners.
MindUP principles and strategies can be implemented in every area of your current curriculum, including social and emotional learning. MindUP is not a separate program taught in isolation or conflict with your current curriculum. It is integrative in nature and may be considered as much as an approach to teaching and classroom management that becomes a part of the classroom culture as it is a group of activities to enhance self-awareness. It does not replace any part of your curriculum, but augments how you teach and how children learn and approach life.
The Hawn Foundation is sponsoring a MindUP Workshop for Teachers and School Leaders and a MindUP Workshop for Prospective Teacher Trainers/Consultants on January 21 through 23 in New York City. Enrollment is limited. For more information and online registration, please visit our website at www.thehawnfoundation.org.
I welcome you to explore with us the tremendous benefits of MindUP. By creating optimistic classrooms and fostering the growth of a positive culture in schools and communities, we can help children lead happy, fulfilling lives. While children make up 25% of the world’s population, they are 100% of our future.