“For the past few years, I have felt like a fish out of water in the current educational environment and have questioned how much longer I can continue in the profession,” Meyer wrote.
She now feels invigorated to start the school year with a more conscious approach.
“One of the biggest realizations I brought home from the conference is that if you can’t control anything else in your school environment, the most basic step you can take is to maintain a daily mindfulness practice,” she wrote. “Even if I’m teaching in an environment that doesn’t actively embrace the benefits of mindfulness, I can do it in my room, in whatever capacity I can manage.”
Research continues to show the benefits of bringing mindfulness into classrooms to help both teachers and students cope with the stresses and demands of the education system.
“Teachers cannot solve the whole problem of fixing what is wrong with public education,” she wrote. “But because we are the ones on the front line, we need to cultivate self-compassion—so we can stay in the job!”
In her own classroom, Meyer has a single-person “Quiet Tent” where children can go to retreat for some down time. She now feels inspired to use it as a breathing space, where she can teach them more mindfulness techniques.
© 2014 Omega Institute for Holistic Studies