December 2018

With News & Info Especially For:

For Parents...

The Web of Gratitude

During December, our focus on Gratitude continued with a new mindfulness practice called The Web of Gratitude. Gratitude practice has been shown to be a powerful practice for personal happiness, and an important way to balance our tendency to focus on what could be better, instead of what is good in the present moment. So go ahead and give it a try yourself by following these steps:

You can imagine that little hearts are floating around you like picture frames, and we are putting pictures of those for whom we are grateful in the heart frames. Start out by thinking about someone at home that you are thankful, or grateful for.  Someone who helps you and is kind to you. Imagine that they are in one of the little hearts in your web of gratitude.  Let’s send some thanks for that person. As you breathe in think “Thank you”. And as you breathe out think, “Thank you." Repeat this same process at least three times with other special people, animals, elements of nature, or events in your picture frames. 

After you're done, take a moment to soak in this feeling of gratitude. Notice what it feels like in your body to be grateful and to say thank you. Once you've taught this to your children, they can do this practice on their own anytime!

Gratitude Has its Rewards

The Washington Post recently featured a great article on the brain-based benefits of gratitude practice. Neuroscientist Christina Karns set out to explore the relationship between gratitude and altruism, and found that both practices have positive effects on each other. Read the full article here to find out how simple practices like The Web of Gratitude can have big impacts on other aspects of our lives as well!

For Educators...


New Peace Class Lesson

The past few weeks in Peace Class we have been digging deeper into gratitude. We have also been learning about the brain’s Negativity Bias – the tendency of our brains to focus on and remember bad things and to let good things slide out. Our brains have evolved to do this in order to keep us safe.  If we touch a cactus and hurt ourselves once our brains will remember that and we won’t do it again. That’s great! Unfortunately our brains can’t tell the difference between something that is truly dangerous and something that is simply unpleasant – like being embarrassed. We can help override this Negativity Bias by making a point of noticing all of the big and little good things in our day-to-day lives.

To practice this, we got out cups and marbles and worked with our Kindness Pals.  We labeled one cup “good” and one cup “bad” and we told our Kindness Pal everything we could remember about the day so far. As one person talked,  the other put marbles in the good side or the bad side.  When we were done most of the kids were completely surprised by all of the good things that happened that they had barely noticed: things like waking up in a warm bed, having breakfast, having someone to bring you to school. getting to play with friends before school, reading a great book in library, having Peace Class, learning a new song in Music Class and so on.  This practice can become a habit that can make us much happier and healthier in the long run.  It’s so important not to let our Negativity Bias be in charge and to really stop and notice all of the little good things that make up our lives.  Try it with your kids and see which one of your marble cups is more full!
Have you registered for our January Budding Brains Mini-Conference in Washington, DC yet? Registration space is limited, so reserve your spot today!
More Information & Registration

In February there will be another opportunity to join us at the Coalition of Schools Educating Mindfully. During this three-day event in Illinois, participants will have a chance to do both half-day and all-day workshops with Peace of Mind and friends. 

COSEM Conference Schedule & Registration

Trauma-Sensitive Practices

Thank you Dr. Tish Jennings for your timely, insightful, touching and practical new book, The Trauma Sensitive Classroom: Building Resilience with Compassionate Teaching.  A must-read for educators, especially those teaching mindfulness to kids.

Another wonderful resource for trauma-sensitive practices is David Treleaven's Trauma-Sensitive Mindfulness: Practices for Safe and Transformative Healing. Both of these influential educators are leading the way with important considerations for our students, and we are grateful to be learning from their wisdom.


For Friends & Supporters of Peace of Mind...

JusTme's Annual DC-Area Tour: March 2019

Is your school interested in having the amazing JusTme engage your students in a high-energy, hip-hop mindfulness assembly? Are you willing to help fund his visit to a school that sees the power of JusTme’s work for their students but can’t afford to have him visit? If either answer is yes, please let Cheryl know

Peace of Mind Community Quotes:

“You have done such an outstanding job and this is such a comprehensive curriculum.  i am implementing your program …and strongly encouraging my colleagues in our district to do so also.”
– Cathy Stainbrook, M.A.E. Professional School Counselor, Iowa

"I started using the curriculum and it's wonderful!  This week we are working on Take Five Breathing. The lessons are easy to follow and very well thought out.  The curriculum fits well with the Mindful Schools training that I did a few years ago. I'm very pleased with my purchase. Thanks so much!"
- Kree Barus, Teacher, Jeddah Saudi Arabia

Our Newest Peace of Mind School

Welcome to the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School in Rockville, Maryland. We are so glad to have you join our Peace of Mind Community, and look forward to supporting your staff and students as you implement the Peace of Mind program!
What an amazing year this has been! We continue to be so very grateful to our Peace of Mind partner schools, parents, and supporters. We wish everyone a Happy New Year and look forward to what 2019 will bring. Peace to you all,

Jillian, Linda, & Cheryl
We'd love to hear about how you are using the Peace of Mind program, ideas for future supplemental tools, or anything else that's on your mind! Connect with us at  
Copyright © 2018 Teach Peace of Mind, All rights reserved.

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