As far as after-school detention goes, being forced to sit in a room against one’s will for an hour rarely promotes the personal reflection that leads to any behavior change. An alternative would be to allow students to get in touch with their senses and calm their emotions. And that’s exactly what Yellow Springs High along with nearby Mckinney Middle school are doing, by offering after-school mindfulness practice led by an expert.
30 minutes after classes end each Monday, students are guided by a certified instructor to take a quiet moment to calm their emotions and focus on stillness, being present, and increasing awareness of themselves and their school environment.
Along with mindfulness classes every Monday, Yellow Springs High offers yoga classes in the school library every Wednesday.
Collectively, these emotional reset sessions sit at the heart of a new Ohio statewide education initiative encouraging schools and teachers to offer mindfulness training to students. Entitled “Each Child, Our Future,” Ohio’s new plan aims to offer resources to create well-rounded and capable young people.
With a focus on social-emotional learning, the program intends to strengthen kids’ capabilities of understanding and managing emotions, establish and maintain positive relationships and make responsible decisions.