Learning Goal

Students will understand the principles of mindfulness and experience several mindfulness activities.

Learning Objectives

By the end of the lessons, students will be able to:

  • Describe mindfulness
  • Create and identify ground rules for mindfulness and SEL in the classroom
  • Practice new mindfulness techniques
  • Understand the Empowering Education and social and emotional learning time block (as appropriate to your school setting)

Learning Summary

This first lesson introduces mindfulness and lays a foundation for the rest of the school year for your classroom’s mindfulness and social and emotional learning (SEL) time.

In this introductory lesson, students learn and discuss what mindfulness and social and emotional learning are. Students play a game tracking their thoughts over a minute. You then lead the students in a breathing practice followed by a classroom discussion on mindfulness. Finally, students reflect in their journals. As with all of our lessons, we encourage you to modify it to meet the needs of you and students. You’ll see various options listed below to help you do that.

CASEL Competencies

Self-awareness: The ability to accurately recognize one’s own emotions, thoughts, and values and how they influence behavior. The ability to accurately assess one’s strengths and limitations, with a well-grounded sense of confidence, optimism, and a "growth mindset."

Self-management: The ability to successfully regulate one’s emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in different situations — effectively managing stress, controlling impulses, and motivating oneself. The ability to set and work toward personal and academic goals.