[AusMinds Guest Post] The #1 Missing Ingredient In Creating Super Successful Students – Growing with Gratitude

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[AusMinds Guest Post] The #1 Missing Ingredient In Creating Super Successful Students

August 1, 2015

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AusMinds help build relationships between education, communities and families to collectively own the responsibility of developing well-balanced, successful human beings who have the drive to define their own success, whatever that may be.

Tammie Meehan from AusMinds recently invited me to write a second guest post on Mindfulness and Growth Mindset. Tammie has kindly given Growing With Gratitude permission to publish the article on our blog.

I highly recommend you check out AusMinds. Recommended articles from AusMinds include:

School Communities: The Heart and Soul of a School
Beyond Praise and Posters
Learning is not pretty; it takes grit and the right kind of praise!

Tammie has also written an awesome guest post for Growing With Gratitude.

Enjoy the article!

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Are you someone who is already developing a Growth Mindset in your classroom with your students? Excellent, your students are well on the way to developing a mindset that:

  • Highlights maximum effort as a crucial factor in life and learning
  • Sees adversity as a challenge
  • Is eager to improve based on any criticism
  • Is motivated by failure

What if there were a secret ingredient that could compliment Growth Mindset practice and take your classroom to a whole new level?

Well perhaps there is.

Try adding mindfulness.

Do you often hear yourself or other teachers say to students “just focus and relax”?

We assume students know how to focus and relax. But have they ever been taught? This is where mindfulness combines with growth mindset to become a powerful force.

What is Mindfulness?

ReachOut Australia defines mindfulness in the following manner: Mindfulness is about training yourself to pay attention in a specific way. When a person is mindful, they:

  • focus on the present moment
  • try not to think about anything that went on in the past or that might be coming up in future
  • purposefully concentrate on what’s happening around them
  • try not to be judgemental about anything they notice, or label things as ‘good’ or ‘bad’

What are the benefits of mindfulness in educational settings?

  • Less stress and anxiety
  • Increased sense of calm
  • Build’s resilience
  • Better focus and concentration
  • Supports social development
  • Increases happiness
  • Build’s successful relationships
  • Become more compassionate towards each other
  • Enables children to be aware of their emotions prior to reacting, resulting in better choices

I hear you say, “okay, but how do I do this?”

Meditation.

I believe mediation is the best form of mindfulness for teenagers. Other ways to pracice mindfuness include:

You may want to try one of these with your class.

First of all you need to set a side some time to practice meditation. At first it might feel strange to the students and may result in a favourite student disturbing the class in an attempt to be funny. Allocating time for students to practice will be well worth it.

You will need to convince your students about the benefits of mindfulness and how it will help them. To help you do this here is an extract from a article by mindfulness expert Sarah Rudell Beach.

A few research nuggets that you could share with your students:

  • studies show that students who meditate before an exam perform better than students who do not
  • meditation helps improve performance on standardised tests
  • meditation can improve concentration
  • meditation can help with anxiety, stress, and depression {three things I see all too frequently in my students}

The great thing is you did not have to sit out the front of the class and play the role as the Dalai Lama. Use an APP. Popular APPS to use are:

Insight Meditation Timer
Stop, Breathe, and Think
Smiling Mind
Take a Break!

I’d love to share this story: 

3 years ago I was sitting in a high school graduation ceremony. It came time for the school captains speech. The school captain shared their story of a year of stress, depression and anxiety, which ended in not being able to finish exams and hospitalisation. 

The schools captain suffered a break down because he put so much pressure on himself to achieve the academic results they needed to get in to Journalism at University. To his credit he was courageous in telling his story.

This boy was a victim. A victim of his schools expectations and a victim of being taught success will only come if he gets his required score in his senior high school year and then he will be happy.

The structure of many schools teach students they will be happy when they:

  • do well academically
  • get a high paying job
  • buy the big house
  • purchase the expensive car

I often think what if the school captain was taught to have a growth mindset? Additionally, what if he was taught mindfulness?

We will leave you with those thoughts.

If your friends will benefit from this article FEEL FREE TO SHARE

Please share in the comments mindfulness activities you have tried with students/children.

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Growing With Gratitude Blog
Twitter: @grow_gratitude
Email: [email protected]

PS: If You Want To Teach Your Children/Students Habits Of Happiness In A Fun And Engaging Way  – CLICK HERE

PPS: Schools from 16 different countries have registered as a Growing With Gratitude School. Exciting announcements of this to come.Unknown-1

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