Mindfulness in Education
What does Volunteering in Education mean?
A persons formative years and their development into a happy adult is crucial, therefore, positive and influential role-models throughout the educational journey are vital. Volunteering is needed in schools and in our educational institutions so that rather than having people come to learn mindfulness as adults to deal with stress and depression, we teach these skills as children grow up.’
When students see adult volunteers in their schools, they see first-hand how members of their community value education and support their local educational establishments. When a community is very involved in their local schools volunteering, more people have a better sense of the total education picture, and see how dedicated so many people are to educating the community’s youth and adult learners. More involvement results in better understanding, more trust building, and a commitment to even more support. School begins to feel like family!
Wake Up Schools supports educators to bring the practices of mindfulness and applied ethics into their own lives so they may be happy and free, and so they may in turn share these practices with colleagues and students in their school communities.
Link for getting involved and to support your research:
http://www.3ff.org.uk/volunteer/ Three Faiths Forum – Volunteer
Personal testimonial from CoI friends who are already volunteering in the education sector:
“I had no previous experience of teaching and am surprised and delighted at how rewarding it is. The children are very open and eager to learn and often very insightful. Teaching in the Plum Village tradition I feel I have something very valuable and practical to offer them to give them self – confidence and to help them cope with the stresses of modern life – and stress is something that is often articulated by children as young as 9 and 10. Whatever topic I am teaching I try to include the benefits of having understanding and compassion for oneself and for others.”
“Over the last few years I’ve been invited into a few local primary schools to either lead assemblies or talk to classes about Buddhism as part of their RE syllabus. With the help of Thay’s book Planting seeds, plus stories from my own experience, I’ve really enjoyed the experience of introducing children to the ideas and practice of mindfulness and meditation. My own children having very much benefitted from experiencing the practice at Plum Village and family retreats, I feel very motivated to sow the seeds of peace and compassion at an early age, and give children a few tools with which to be able to cope with the stresses of growing up. I find also that going right back to basics helps renew my own practice, and that contact with these fresh little flowers refreshes me too!”
Contact form for Education
We are collecting information so that you will be able to find here:
- A description of what volunteering in education means
- Practical advice and links for those who want to get involved
- Personal testimonials from people who are already doing this
- A contact-person
Some initial thoughts
- Running an assembly on mindfulness or Buddhism in a local school.
- Simple mindfulness practices (with no reference to Buddhism)
- Every week senior staff at your local school have to think up content for assemblies. This may be the whole school at a small primary or a year-group at a secondary school.
- All schools will cover Buddhism as part of the curriculum, but it is rare to have a visit from a practitioner.
- Mindfulness for stress-reduction for staff