Wednesday, October 9, 2013

spiritual health + mindfulness

After our experiments to test whether exercise affects our mental health and watching this video, we've decided it's a good idea to start everyday by getting our brains "ready" to learn.
So this morning we started our day with one of these awesome interactive dance videos!
We danced away to this one first:
It was so much fun, but very confusing for a not-so-light-on-her-feet teacher!

To start a more in-depth discussion about spiritual health, I'll be reading this book to the class this week:
It's a story that you can read in a very open-ended way, stopping along the way to have students turn and talk, share in small groups, or discuss as a class, because the three questions are kind of big ones that are difficult to understand as is.
The main character, Nikolai, just wants to know how to be a good person.
He asks his friends and gets very different answers.
In the end he has made a very interesting discovery...
It's more correct to say we'll be examining the book as spiritual in the way of being mindful.
Recognizing our selves, recognizing our actions, and understanding our impacts.

We've also done a small bit of "inner thinking" (or meditation) using this website:

And at the risk of being misunderstood, I've arranged to have a certified yoga instructor (a class parent!) come in to lead a beginning yoga session.
She did warn me that this is a bit of an issue in the US, hence the focus on mindfulness rather than spirituality in our classroom.
I'm really interested to see how my grade three's will react to it.
I feel I'm lucky to have such an open class, so all should be fine.
It seems inevitable, though, to get some giggles with 20 other 8-year-olds all stretching out and trying to find their "center" in our school Fitness Room!
I've been meaning to try yoga for a long time now, so this is a sneaky way to bring it into the classroom that I'm definitely looking forward to.

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