Focusing techniques



Mindfulness is receiving increasing attention as a means of supporting and promoting good mental health in schools, and rightly so. There is plenty of evidence to substantiate its merits but common sense tells you that learning better self control and techniques to calm your mind so that you can think more clearly is going to be beneficial for all involved!

The principles of mindfulness are very accessible but do take practice. Not all classroom practitioners will have the time or inclination to undertake a full training course in mindfulness yet there are a range of simple focusing techniques that can be employed by even the loudest and most excitable of teachers; I believe that there is great value in all teachers, regardless of their character or teaching style, demonstrating how they can be calm, quiet and still at times. By modelling positive coping strategies we are teaching our youngsters that they too can utilise such techniques when they are faced with difficult feelings or challenging situations.

This handbook has been developed to be a ‘teacher friendly’ resource that requires no formal training and just a bit of open mindedness. I’ve worked with a number of schools on this theme and while some teachers have appreciated some introductory training, the far greater training opportunities have come through observing a practical demonstration of how I use the techniques with their own children with an open invite to other staff members to join in the classroom session.