- Parenting / Early Childhood Education
THE MINDFULNESS PROGRAM
"Mindfulness teaches the skills of purposeful awareness, and can be applied to our experiences, thoughts, and emotions through sustained attention without reaction.
The vision of Mindful Schools is that mindfulness training becomes an intricate component of education as a whole, as a required course with teacher credentialing programs, integrated into daily classroom curriculum, and available to parents, thus allowing mindfulness to reach the entire community.
The 2009 grant will provide classes, teacher trainings, and supplies for Mindful Schools, a Community Outreach Program of Park Day School serving low-income and affluent public school students and private school students.
The mission of Mindful Schools is to support mindfulness training in educational settings by bringing programs to schools; to support teachers and administration in their own understanding and practice of mindfulness; and to be part of creating calmer, kinder, more peaceful, more effective learning environments throughout the country.
The mindfulness program is a five-week, 15 session course. A series of activities teach students how to focus their attention, how to do a single task at one time with full awareness, how to recognize and understand their emotions and how their actions and choices affect themselves and others. The mindfulness program provides four important benefits: 1) enhancing focus and concentration teaches children to pay attention; 2) improving impulse control helps students behave in class and reduces violence; 3) reducing stress enables students to learn more easily and promotes better health; 4) building community helps students feel connected to their teacher and each other. This Community Outreach Program helps guide students towards academic and personal success, helping others see themselves as vital members of their school and active contributors to society.
To learn more about this program, please visit their website at mindfulschools.org.
LAFAYETTE RESERVOIR PLAYGROUND PROJECT
Julia Burke Foundation joined the cities of Lafayette, Moraga, and Orinda,
for the Lafayette Reservoir Project. It took a community to design and
build the new playground at the Lafayette Reservoir. View the photos
below to see the results of the community working together.
MENTORING BOOK PROJECT
The Foundation has funded a project supporting research by faculty and
students of the University of Wisconsin, for a book to be written for
the general public to encourage informal mentoring between adults and
children. Uncles and aunts, neighbors, coaches, piano teachers and others
can do this informal mentoring. Through this book, adults would learn
about the informal mentoring process, why mentoring is important, and
ways that informal mentoring can be done. In addition, parents will
get information on why it is important to encourage others to be involved
with their children. The idea behind this book is to support the involvement
of many others (besides parents) in helping children develop into strong
and healthy adults.