"The movement of mindfulness in education invigorates me, strengthening my belief that within us all, individually and collectively, is the potential to live peaceful, fulfilling and meaningful lives." -- Brian Cooper, Year-long participant
 

We hope this letter finds you well in the New Year! Here at Mindful Schools, we're excited about 2016. We've been building new courses based on your feedback, and creating resources to support your work and strengthen the Mindfulness in Education movement. 

We're particularly keen to start bringing some more engaging features to our newsletter in the months to come! Take a few minutes to check out this edition...
Community Portraits: Brian Cooper
Personal Practice: Mindful Communication
Special Interest: ADHD and the "Attention Spectrum"
Spotlight on Research: Mindfulness and Test Performance
Upcoming Courses: Year-long Early Bird Discount
Community
Community Portraits: Brian Cooper
Brian is a Mindful Schools educator who began practicing mindfulness regularly over 12 years ago. "For the first several years this consisted of trying to count ten breaths, multiple times per day," he says.

Brain recently wrote about using mindfulness in his work in our Graduate Stories.
"I need to be present and available for all of [the] experiences [in my life]... Due in part to my mindfulness practice, I'm able to engage wholly and with equanimity in the challenging work of social justice. The movement of mindfulness in education invigorates me, strengthening my belief that within us all, individually and collectively, is the potential to live peaceful, fulfilling and meaningful lives."

Brian is the Assistant Principal at Life Academy for Health and Bioscience in Oakland Unified School District, CA. and is currently enrolled in our Year-Long Certification Program . You can read more about Brian in our Graduate Stories.
PracticePersonal Practice: Pausing for Mindful Communication
Whether we're speaking, texting, emailing, or just plain thinking, most of us communicate all day long. Learning ways to bring more mindfulness to our communication gives us more time to practice, provides a powerful way to learn about our minds, and can improve the quality of our personal and professional relationships. One of the best ways to begin is to experiment with this is taking a short pause before speaking (or texting, or emailing...). In the space of that pause, take a breath or feel your body. Consider what you are about to say and where it's coming from. In this space of awareness, what other options arise for how to respond?
ADHDSpecial Interest: ADHD and the "Attention Spectrum"
Numerous studies of young adults and teens have confirmed that mindfulness strengthens students' ability to focus; and many classroom teachers have observed that students with ADHD appear to benefit the most. According to a recent American Medical Association editorial, "The current thinking in the field is that attentional capacity and skills do occur on a continuum or spectrum," notes Dr. Mark Mahone. "Pediatrics is evolving toward the idea of proactively supporting attentional functioning in everyone." With this changing perspective, Mindfulness in Education is a powerful tool to offer students as a prime method of non-pharmaceutical assistance. Read the full article here .
SpotlightResearchSpotlight on Research: Mindfulness and Test Performance
Although the emotional benefits of mindfulness would be enough to justify teaching the practice, strong evidence for academic improvement would significantly impact the ongoing dialogues about integrating mindfulness in schools. Recent studies suggest that mindfulness may have an indirect impact on test performance by reducing test anxiety and mind-wandering. More research using rigorous randomized controls is needed, however, to examine if mindfulness is causing the improvements in test performance. See our brief research summary on Mindfulness, Academic Performance & Test Anxiety for more details.
Now we'd like to hear from you!
Thanks for taking the time to read. Below you'll find a little more about our upcoming courses and an open position on our staff.  If you like what you see or have suggestions, feel free to let us know. We look forward to hearing from you!

Sincerely,
The Mindful Schools Team
CoursesUpcoming Courses

The Year-long Certification Program is designed for educators interested in deepening their personal practice and playing an active role as a Mindful Leader in their school, community, or the broader Mindfulness in Education movement. Early-bird discounts end March 15; apply for scholarships by Jan. 30.

All of our courses are recommended by over 95% of participants, offer
group discounts  and need-based scholarships. Unlike most online courses, each course is facilitated by a Guiding Teacher who provides ongoing feedback, answers questions, and helps the group synthesize emerging themes.


Year-Long Certification :  an in-depth, 300-hour, year-long training with silent retreat time ( Applications Now Open )
  • Personal practice, teaching, and facilitation skills
  • Continuous mentorship while working with youth
  • Become a leader in the mindfulness movement

Mindfulness Fundamentals:  a 6-week online introduction to the basics of mindfulness ( Courses start Feb. 5 & Mar. 4)
  • Develop a personal mindfulness practice

  • Enhance your ability to be a strong role model

  • Acquire tools to address burnout and stress from the inside


Mindful Educator Essentials:  a 6-week online introduction to teaching mindfulness to youth ( Courses Feb. 25 & Mar. 24)
  • Learn to deliver our K-5 and Adolescent curricula
  • Develop an understanding of the neuroscience behind mindfulness
  • Receive guidance in giving presentations to key stakeholders
Hiring
Mindful Schools is Hiring:  Course Admissions Specialist
We're seeking an exceptional individual to join our close-knit staff community. The Course Admissions Specialist supports participants and internal staff with fantastic interpersonal skills and an extraordinary ability to multi-task in a high volume, fast paced environment. Duties range from general customer service, course management, to general administration. To apply, see complete details here .