Our children spend years and years in school studying reading, writing and arithmetic, however, how many are introduced to reflection, relationships and resilience? The answer, unfortunately, is very few. A new curriculum called MindUP, founded by actress Goldie Hawn, aims to change this by teaching children how to be in touch with their emotions and manage stress through focused breathing, focused attention, relaxation and awareness.
A team of neuroscientists, doctors, researchers, educators and psychologists developed this innovative programme as a response to child/teen frustration, anxiety, and lack of empathy, in the hope of creating happiness among young people and an appreciation for the internal, as well as the external world, in which they live. The aim was to teach children the capacity to tune into themselves and others, to balance emotions, to pause before taking action, to extinguish fear after trauma, to develop insight and empathy, morality, creativity, and intuition. You can read an article and see Goldie Hawn speak on the subject here.
This focus on mindfulness and well being in the classroom is new but it should not be surprising. In recent years there has been a growing awareness of these qualities among adults as many of them stray from organized religions towards a more personal spirituality, however, until now there has not been a large movement for passing these qualities onto our children. This is a welcome beginning. Can you imagine what a whole generation of adults would be like if these qualities were rooted in their earliest years? I look forward to finding out.
Girl Museum Inc.