May 30, 2024
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Mindfulness Sets Scene in JEC Early Childhood

“Take a deep breath in through your nose…and out…..”

“Sit up tall….”

“Let’s do some belly breathing …”

Walk the halls of the JEC Early Childhood and you will hear these sounds of children practicing mindfulness! Mindfulness is “the ability to be fully present in the here and now.”

What does mindfulness mean for a young child, whose world is packed with new experiences and sensations? Mindfulness empowers children to consciously stop, assess personal needs and notice what is going on around them and within themselves. Studies and anecdotal reports show that mindfulness helps improve attitude, behavior, self-esteem and focus in all children.

JEC Early Childhood faculty continues to work with Nancy Siegel, a mindfulness training consultant, to foster mindfulness in our classrooms. The three year olds demonstrate their readiness to learn by putting their feet on the ground, sitting up tall and taking a deep breath in. At other points in the day, you will see children playing games such as “Layers of Sound” to strengthen their listening and aural focusing abilities, and notice sounds from beyond the classroom to inside themselves. It’s amazing to hear a very young child exclaim, “Morah! I can hear my heartbeat!” Another beautiful moment was when a morah noticed an active boy sitting still, asked if he was okay, and he responded, “Yes. I am belly breathing and getting oxygen to every part of my body.” The classrooms are calm and focused, a haven from the stressful pace of the outside world.

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