Friday, September 13, 2013

Welcome back, Lower School!

We're off to a great start this year in the Lower School (I'll write a separate post about Middle School)! We're finishing up our third week of school and second week of music classes. I'm fortunate enough to see all my LS classes twice a week, so we're already well into things. Here's a summary of what we've done so far.

A couple of years ago, I finally purchased a Tibetan singing bowl, something I've wanted for a long time--both because there is no other sound like it in the world, and I wanted to use it as a mindfulness tool in the classroom. The kids have always loved it. I can practically see their heart rates slowing down and their focus coming back to center as they listen to it, and they enjoy raising a finger to show when each person stops hearing the incredibly long sound. This year, I've decided to start every music class with "the ringing of the bowl." This fits well with our Friends school practice of settling in, and I have a long-term plan to work on some additional mindfulness techniques and queries during this special 2-3 minutes. So far, I'm feeling much more settled MYSELF at the start of a busy class, and the kids seem more ready to focus.