Here are five essential competences to learn and embed into Mindful Teaching for your pupils’ happiness:
This simply means being fully aware of the world around you and what you are feeling. You can easily teach mindfulness skills to your pupils and the easiest way is at playtime. While you’re out encourage them to take a moment to find a daisy and consciously pay attention to all their senses. It’s that simple.
Gaining knowledge and skills brings freshness to life, satisfies basic psychological needs and creates healthy challenges. Children can take learning for granted, because they spend most of their time in school. Yet, unless they’re interested and invested in what they’re learning, the psychological benefits are unlikely to follow. What have they enjoyed learning recently? Set your pupils a challenge where you can enjoy learning new things together, it will help you create meaningful relationships.
Use your strengths
Knowing and using one’s strengths is considered to be one of the most direct routes to personal and professional fulfillment. Putting your strengths to work on a daily basis has a lasting effect on increased happiness and decreased depressive symptoms for up to six months. Notice strengths in everyday moments.
Are you a glass half-full or a glass half-empty person? If you focus on the half empty, practice asking “what is good about it?” or “what can we learn from it?” every time something bad happens. Being exposed to this kind of constructive thinking can teach your pupils the skills of re-framing that are the cornerstone of resilience and will buffer them against depression later in life.
Generosity can be taught and learnt, and practice is far better than theory. Studies in neuroscience have shown that co-operative behavior activates reward areas of the brain, suggesting we’re hard-wired to enjoy helping one another. It’s a win-win scenario – by helping others you feel better yourself. A great thing for your pupils to learn.