DVFriends has been incorporating Mindfulness as part of its community and curricular offerings for several years. As a Friends school with an established culture of silence and reflection, the practice of Mindfulness is a natural complement to our community, and the added benefits for ADHD and LD students make it an important facet of our educational program. Teachers and staff have participated in Mindfulness workshops and presentations during faculty in-service sessions, and many teachers embrace these practices in their classrooms on a day-to-day basis to help students center, focus, and regulate emotion. A group of DVFriends faculty presented to other educators on the benefits of Mindfulness in the classroom at the 2019 NAIS Conference in California.
Many classes across all three of our divisions incorporate Mindfulness in a variety of ways from breathing exercises, movement activities, and guided meditation or journaling exercises. These practices help students to cultivate awareness of emotions, teach stress management skills, and build resiliency. Students who participate in daily Mindfulness activities have noted its benefits including decreased anxiety, increased focus before a standardized test or athletic event, and an overall increased sense of calm and well-being.
DVFriends draws from the growing field of research and practical experience that show how the practice of Mindfulness can play an important role in managing ADHD and helping students cope with learning differences and emotional issues to be more productive and successful inside and outside of the classroom.