Elizabeth Park SchoolsElizabeth Park Schools

Introducing mindfulness with staff and students

During 2018, Elizabeth Park Primary School began the introduction of mindfulness skills and practices for staff and students.

Why learn mindfulness?

Thirty years of scientific research and, more recently, brain science, offer evidence to support the use of mindfulness in education. The application of mindfulness by students and educators has shown evidence to improve mental health, academic achievement, and inter- and intra-personal relationships.

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is the ability to purposefully bring awareness to our present moment experiences, including our emotions, thoughts and actions. This enables us to choose more skillful responses to challenging situations rather than automatic reactions, and to engage more fully in the richness of life experiences.

How do we learn mindfulness?

As intellectual and experiential human beings, it is important that both these modalities are utilised to fully understand and be able to embody mindfulness. Mindfulness understandings & practices primarily help us to become present, manage stress and notice our reactions to life’s challenges through cultivating:

  • innovative and entrepreneurial ‘micro-business’ development
  • Self-Awareness: Through increasing our attention on our internal and external experiences, mindfulness helps us to notice our habit patterns, behaviours and responses to life events and situations. We learn to become more aware of our physical, mental and emotional states of being, and notice the filters through which we perceive and react to events. We come to understand ourselves and the habits of our mind, and realise we always have choices about the way we think and act
  • Compassionate and positive mindset: Through mindfulness practices, we learn that habits of reactivity and resistance to life's ups and downs increase stress, anxiety, and mental distress. Through mindfulness practice we can begin to cultivate more beneficial mind states in each and every moment and become more compassionate and kinder toward ourselves and toward others
  • Mindfulness and Neuroscience

    Learning about the brain science and how mindfulness practice works to develop new neuronal pathways to improve mental wellbeing, is an important part of understanding mindfulness and its benefits. Through the program, we learn how brain functions influence our emotions, thoughts, and responses, and how practicing mindfulness calms and soothes the limbic brain regions.