We often post advice about yoga and mindful activities for your entire class. But one size does NOT fit all. Sometimes just one student needs a break. Without disrupting your entire class, what do you do?
Try dedicating one corner or nook of your classroom as the “Mindful Corner”. Much more positive than time-out areas, this corner would be designed as a quiet, calming place for students to go when they needed a few minutes to de-stress and re-focus on their studies.
How to design this space? Start with seating. Find an oversized comfy chair – Target usually has good deals – or offer lots of pillows so students can make their own comfortable seat on the floor. If possible, dim the lights in this particular area of the classroom or have a soft lamp available. Then offer various activities to help the student calm his/her mind. You can create your own Mindfulness Jar, or offer our amaZEN U Mind Jar video on an tablet. Large, over-the-ears headphones with calming music or nature noises like rain drops or waves will help the student tune out the buzz from the rest of the classroom. Lastly, ask that the student keep his/her back to the rest of the class, so nobody is distracted.
It’s important to have a positive outlet for students who need a break from group. Research shows (http://www.wpri.org/WPRI/Reports/2013/The-Impact-of-Disruptive-Students-in-Wisconsin-Public-Schools.htm) that even just one disruptive student can ruin the academic environment and bring down proficiency scores for an entire classroom.
And if looking to create an entire classroom or ZEN, check our previous blog post on Designing a ZEN Classroom.
For access to more videos about creating a calming classroom space, sign up for your FREE month trial of AmaZEN U’s online videos at www.amazenu.com.