MORNING BREAKOUT SESSIONS

E: Educators  |  A: Administrators  |  P: Parents  |  H: Health & Wellness/Student Support

E  |  H

Mindfulness & Theatre and Dance, Clare Mottola

Description

This session will link the two disciplines of theatre and dance, and discuss how an integrated mindfulness practice not only builds empathy, but offers a thoughtful and comprehensive approach to how and where to implement these strategies as a part of a schoolwide program.

E  |  A  |  P  |  H

Finding Peace Within Ourselves, and Others, Peter Franklin

Description

The focus of this session will be on three primary areas: 1) Mindfulness Basics – Creating and growing your personal practice: 2) Mindfulness Integration – Strategies for implementing mindfulness in your home, your school or your classroom; 3) Mindfulness Application- Hands-on experience in delivering/teaching mindfulness.

A  |  H

Becoming a Conscious Leader, Marie Mechtaly

Description

Be guided through an interactive and experiential session of learning how to identify your own stress triggers in your leadership role. You will receive tips on how to activate the conscious and stress-free leader that YOU are. Learn about compassion fatigue, how to identify stress triggers, create awareness around your perceptions vs. the reality of a situation, and how to step into conscious leadership.

E  |  A  |  P  |  H

Mindfulness & Performance, Lani Silversides

Description

This session will incorporate how mindfulness can be the foundational tool in mental training for athletes and performers (dancers, performing arts, etc.). With mindfulness as a basis for developing greater awareness and tuning into oneself, athletes can learn about the power of gratitude, failure, goal setting, visualization, growth mindset, flow, self-compassion, tuning out distractions, gaining confidence, leadership, and more. Time permitting, we can talk about how these tools can also be used within the classroom as well, particularly around test preparation and test anxiety.

E  |  P  |  H

From Turbulence to Grace: Utilizing Meditation and Breathwork to Address Clinical Anxiety and PanicAmrit Daryanani

Description

This will be a hybrid lecture and practice session exploring the utilization of meditation and pranayama as counseling interventions for clinical anxiety and panic.  An overview of the neurology of anxiety and panic will be given, followed by a research synopsis demonstrating how the practices of meditation and pranayama can be utilized to effectively manage these hyper-arousal states. Participants will practice a mountain meditation exercise and two breathing exercises.

E

Mindfulness & Science: Developing Ecological ConsciousnessJoe Karr, MEd

Description

One can clearly see the environmental degradation caused by our society, and the youth are no exception. Mindfulness helps us to be aware of what is happening both within and around us, and certain practices can assist with broadening our sense of self to include the natural world. By doing this, we may cultivate a solidarity with all life and be more inclined to care for nature. Including these practices in education creates a profound opportunity to create a shift in perception and lasting positive change.

This session will explore ideas that stem from the work by such visionaries as Thomas Berry, Joanna Macy, John Seed, and Arne Naess and will focus on growing the ecological self. This deeper sense of identity is created through awareness, appreciation, and empathy for all life and is possible at every grade level. Participants will explore past and current cultural paradigms and discover simple ways to develop ecological consciousness in the classroom.

E  |  P

“Wait!” A Mindful PacePaige Bloom

Description

Ever notice when a child asks you to wait? I recently observed many of my students started their sentences with that word- “Wait.” “Wait, what page are we on?” or “Wait, can you help me?” Although initially irritated by this quasi demand, it eventually made me worried. I began to question myself and my practices. Am I actually waiting for them? Are they actually ready? Do they feel I care enough to meet them at their pace? This observation led me into an active practice of mindfully listening to my students as they spoke to me. Through mindfully listening, I observed their needs more clearly and was able to make several changes to our day in order to better serve their needs when it comes to time. Join me as we examine our curricular pace, the flow of our day, and explore how we can adjust our schedule to better incorporate mindfulness so that our children are moving at a pace that meets them where they are. Learn how to examine whether your pace is one that works for your students by incorporating mindfulness tools and activities before, during, and after instruction, as well as throughout the flow of your day.

E

Using Mindful Reflection to Build a Temperament-Inclusive Classroom, Deborah Farmer Kris

Description

In every classroom, teachers try to engage students who have a variety of temperaments: extroverts, introverts and ambiverts. They work with children who crave sensory stimulation and with those who are highly sensitive to noise and visual distraction. While one temperament is not better than any other, introverted students are often “overlooked, undervalued and overstimulated in our schools.” Learn how teachers can plan lessons and create spaces in their classrooms that make room for mindful self-reflection that supports all learners . . . and provides introverts with the moments of quiet that they need to flourish. Teachers will learn about the science of temperament, and how mindful, self-reflective practices can support introverts, extraverts, and ambiverts.

LEARNING LUNCH TABLE TOPICS

Facilitated topics at each table to continue the dialogue over lunch: Share ideas, challenges, resources, and solutions with your peers to foster greater collaboration as we all work together to strengthen school communities.

Mindfulness in Preschool, Patty Mott and Amanda Hovey

Description

The integration, and demonstrated benefits, of mindfulness in Preschool will be the focus of this table topic. The preschool team has been successful in integrating their respective backgrounds into teaching the whole child, finding much success with their current mindfulness strategies.

Mindfulness in Elementary School (Grades K-2)Stephanie Cruff

Description

This table topic will focus on the integration, and demonstrated benefits, of mindfulness in lower elementary grades.

Mindfulness in Elementary School (Grades 3-5)Caity MacDonald

Description

The focus of this table discussion will be on the integration, and demonstrated benefits, of mindfulness in upper elementary grades.

Mindfulness in Middle School (Grades 6-8), Michael Jedrey

Description

The topic of this table will be the integration, and demonstrated benefits, of mindfulness in Middle School.

How to Make Mindfulness Fun and Accessible to Teens, Pam Altman

Description

This table topic is designed to introduce and review mindfulness group activities to present mindfulness in a fun way to adolescents. We will discuss ways to be flexible in your approach to mindfulness with your students. We will identify physical aids to support your instruction of mindfulness and participate in a discussion of how to assess the effectiveness of mindfulness training for your population.

Integrating Moments of Mindfulness into Your School Day, Sara Rizkalla-Tyson, MEd

Description

This table group will discuss best practices for the integration of mindfulness skills in a variety of course curricula. Participants should come prepared to share their experience with how they use mindfulness in the classroom, both formally and informally. Lesson planning will be discussed as well as stories of the successes and learning opportunities we have experienced as we grow in our practice.

The Neuroscience of Mindfulness, Amrit Daryanani

Description

This table topic is designed to review the neuroscience of mindfulness, including the neuroplasticity, neurogenesis and epigenetics, and to collaborate on best practices for sharing this information with our students and school communities.

Working with Learning Differences, Christopher Willard, PsyD

Description

This table will discuss adaptable practices for students of all different ages, backgrounds, and learning styles.

Mindfulness Director InitiativeDoug Worthen

Description
Please join this learning lunch if you are interested in learning about the Mindfulness Director Initiative (aka MDI) which is a non-profit dedicated to making the Mindfulness Director position a common position in all types of schools (based on Middlesex School model).

Integrating Mindfulness Through a Trauma-Informed Lens, Kerry Doyle, LICSW

Description

Inspired by the concepts of Emotional Intelligence and mindfulness, this session will explore how school social workers and counselors can incorporate trauma informed activities. Discussion will include how to assist students with self-regulation of their emotional distress including how to manage the emotional impact of active shooter and school safety drills. 

Bringing Mindfulness Home, Mark Bertin, MD

Description

Much of the mindfulness work happening at school doesn’t always make it home. This table will discuss ways parents can support the effort as well. Join us to ask questions, discuss strategies, and share ideas about mindfulness in the home.

Working with ResistanceGigi DiBello

Description

Not everyone is open to the idea of mindfulness. This table is for anyone interested in discussing resistance - from parents, faculty, staff or students - and ways to listen to concerns, and support objections in authentic and heartfelt ways.

Partnerships & Sustainability, Vanessa Weiner

Description

Making mindfulness a part of the school day is a multi-year process that requires thoughtful approaches to sustainability, whether your program begins as an internal effort or includes working with a partner. This table will share ideas and best practices for ensuring that your efforts to integrate mindfulness become a sustainable part of your school culture. 

Integrating Mindfulness with Common Core & SEL Initiatives, Shannon Smith

Description

Mindfulness is a tool that can help reinforce school-wide initiatives including social and emotional learning, Common Core, and project-based learning.  Join us at this table to share and discuss ideas and best practices as we work together to integrate mindfulness into the school day to strengthen these initiatives.

Mindfulness Through an Administrator’s Lens, Diane Rich, MEd & Patty Pontarelli

Description

The focus of this table discussion will be on sharing the administrative components of embedding mindfulness education within an entire school community.

AFTERNOON BREAKOUT SESSIONS

E: Educators  |  A: Administrators  |  P: Parents  |  H: Health & Wellness/Student Support

E  |  A  |  P  |  H

Mindfulness & Performance, Lani Silverside

Description

This session will incorporate how mindfulness can be the foundational tool in mental training for athletes and performers (dancers, performing arts, etc.). With mindfulness as a basis for developing greater awareness and tuning into oneself, athletes can learn about the power of gratitude, failure, goal setting, visualization, growth mindset, flow, self-compassion, tuning out distractions, gaining confidence, leadership, and more. Time permitting, we can talk about how these tools can also be used within the classroom as well, particularly around test preparation and test anxiety.

E  |  P  |  H

From Turbulence to Grace: Utilizing Meditation and Breathwork to address Clinical Anxiety and PanicAmrit Daryanani

Description

This will be a hybrid lecture and practice session exploring the utilization of meditation and pranayama as counseling interventions for clinical anxiety and panic.  An overview of the neurology of anxiety and panic will be given, followed by a research synopsis demonstrating how the practices of meditation and pranayama can be utilized to effectively manage these hyper-arousal states. Participants will practice a mountain meditation exercise and two breathing exercises.

E

Mindfulness & Science: Developing Ecological ConsciousnessJoe Karr, MEd

Description

One can clearly see the environmental degradation caused by our society, and the youth are no exception. Mindfulness helps us to be aware of what is happening both within and around us, and certain practices can assist with broadening our sense of self to include the natural world. By doing this, we may cultivate a solidarity with all life and be more inclined to care for nature. Including these practices in education creates a profound opportunity to create a shift in perception and lasting positive change.

E  |  P

“Wait!” A Mindful PacePaige Bloom

Description

Ever notice when a child asks you to wait? I recently observed many of my students started their sentences with that word- “Wait.” “Wait, what page are we on?” or “Wait, can you help me?” Although initially irritated by this quasi demand, it eventually made me worried. I began to question myself and my practices. Am I actually waiting for them? Are they actually ready? Do they feel I care enough to meet them at their pace? This observation led me into an active practice of mindfully listening to my students as they spoke to me. Through mindfully listening, I observed their needs more clearly and was able to make several changes to our day in order to better serve their needs when it comes to time. Join me as we examine our curricular pace, the flow of our day, and explore how we can adjust our schedule to better incorporate mindfulness so that our children are moving at a pace that meets them where they are. Learn how to examine whether your pace is one that works for your students by incorporating mindfulness tools and activities before, during and after instruction, as well as throughout the flow of your day.

E

Using Mindful Reflection to Build a Temperament-Inclusive Classroom, Deborah Farmer Kris

Description

In every classroom, teachers try to engage students who have a variety of temperaments: extroverts, introverts and ambiverts. They work with children who crave sensory stimulation and with those who are highly sensitive to noise and visual distraction. While one temperament is not better than any other, introverted students are often “overlooked, undervalued and overstimulated in our schools.” Learn how teachers can plan lessons and create spaces in their classrooms that make room for mindful self-reflection that supports all learners . . . and provides introverts with the moments of quiet that they need to flourish. Teachers will learn about the science of temperament, and how mindful, self-reflective practices can support introverts, extraverts, and ambiverts.

A

Sustaining A Mindfulness Culture in your SchoolFrankie Engelking

Description

Through personalized and on-going teacher support, mindfulness can be embedded and sustained as an integral part of your school culture. This session will identify strategies that create teacher engagement and promote sustainability and growth of a mindfulness program in the classroom and throughout a school community.

E  |  A  |  P  |  H

Mindfulness & Art: Circles, Shapes, Mandalas & CollaborationRachel Armentano

Description

No art experience necessary for this hands-on workshop. Participants will explore the origins and significance of mandala designs. Rachel will lead drawing and painting exercises and projects that focus on the process of art-making, layering, and building confidence. Artists will experience how art can encourage both personal growth and community building. Activities and pedagogy can be applied to self-mindfulness practice, family, or the academic classroom.  

E  |  A 

What a Pilot Program Really Looks LikeLisa Reimer & Shannon Smith

Description

Are you wondering about starting a Mindfulness initiative in your school? Are you finding the entire process intimidating?

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” – Lao Tzo

Having initiated the pilot program in the Lower School at Rocky Hill School, we will walk you through exactly what it looks like, now and when it began 5 years ago.  You will come away with a clearer picture of what a pilot program really is, what are some short-term results that lead to long-term goals, and some tools to get you started.  This is a process that is applicable whether you are teaching PreK , 12th Grade, or anything in between!

PRACTICE & REFLECTION SESSIONS

Brief breaks in the morning and afternoon to experience a shared practice and reflect as a group. 

  • Mindful Art

  • Walking

 

  • Journaling

  • Power of the Breath 

  • Movement

  • Visualization

 

  • Guided Relaxation

  • Open Sit