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Cliff's Corner - 10/12/2017

posted Oct 17, 2017, 9:38 AM by Admin at Winterhaven

Hello all,

In the K-6 classrooms, we are shifting our focus from Kindness (check out the Kindness Chain in the front hall!) to Mindfulness. Mindfulness is a secular type of meditation that has been shown in many studies to help with student relationships, bullying and overall school climate. 

We kick off this week with “The Laughing Game” in the 5th and 6th grades, a competitive game that relies on each student being able to maintain focus and not crack a smile while half of the class is really trying to get them to laugh. It is a good chance to talk about calming yourself and focusing through distractions and a way to introduce mindfulness to kids who may never have heard of it. Kindergarten through 2nd grade will work on staying focused and still despite the bubbles I blow around them before breaking off into other more yoga based activities. 

Next week, we will conduct the “Marshmallow Test”, another student favorite based off of an experiment done by Stanford University many years ago. More formal mindfulness training begins after that.  

7th and 8th graders have been stuck with me in Tech class doing Career Ed. We looked at the Japanese concept of Ikigai which is the overlap between what you love, what you can get paid for, what the world needs and what you are good at. We finished the two class session with a quiz on the students’ Holland Code and a scavenger hunt looking at all the many things the adults in the building have done for work before they became educators. Both the lesson on Ikigai and the link to the Holland Code quiz are on my very sparse and even more seldomly updated website if you are curious.  

Benson High School will be here visiting the 8th graders on Friday the 20th. Their high school lottery opens November 13th and closes December 1stYou’ll want to contact the Enrollment and Transfer Center of PPS if you are thinking of having your child attend somewhere other than your neighborhood high school.  

And our question of the week:  “What have you done to make the world a more accepting place for people of color this week?” Many of us might be drawing blanks. This is a chance to brainstorm things you can do as a family together and maybe reach out to other people in the community both for guidance and assistance.  

Thanks again!  Cliff Shaw,