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[Interview] Guided Relaxations with Ashley Zahn + Free Relaxation

Wellness Warrior Spotlight
Name: Ashley Zahn
Occupation: 3rd Grade Teacher
Interviewed By: Keilani Dehaan, School Counselor

Do you notice that many students are walking into the classroom feeling anxious, super energetic and sometimes distracted? Watch this video to hear how Ashley Zahn has incorporated daily guided relaxations into each school day. It's no surprise that she has noticed a dramatic increase in focus and a sense of calmness in her classroom. Also, you won't want to miss hearing how Keilani Dehaan uses guided relaxations as an intervention. It's a great episode filled with immediate takeaways!

Quotable: "After mindfulness, it's quiet! I noticed that students are much more focused on their work and they're so much calmer. There's a definite change of energy in the classroom." 

Ashley Zahn you are a true Wellness Warrior, helping students develop the tools to thrive in school and in life!

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[Video] We are the Generation of Wellness

Mission: Equipping students and staff with the tools to thrive in school and life. We believe in building strong hearts, minds and bodies.

Vision: Every school in America will educate the whole child by 2023.

How: Curriculum and trainings that provide proven techniques that decrease stress, strategies that build connection and activities that teach happiness and self-care practices.

Quotable: "We are seeing more students coming to school with anxiety, depression and this is in elementary school. We are seeing families who are struggling and I think society as a whole needs this kind of work."  - JoAnne Duncan, Principal

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[Interview] Teaching Mindfulness with Mallory Neuman

Wellness Warrior Spotlight
Name: Mallory Neuman
Occupation: High School Counselor

What skills have you focused on teaching this year?
Self-regulation and stress relief through guided relaxations and breathing exercises.

Working in a high school is busy and it seems there's a never ending to do list of standards to meet, tests and work/college to prep for and constant activities, assemblies and events. How is there time to teach these skills to ALL student at West Seattle High School?
As a high school counselor, you have to make time.  I’ll usually start a classroom lesson with a few minutes of deep breathing, before we get into the content.  We’ve also built lessons into our school-wide advisory curriculum, so even though I’m not personally delivering the lessons the students are learning about the benefits of mindfulness. Finally, I’ll work with departments who already understand the need for SEL and mindfulness (PE and World Language at the moment)...

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[Video] Teaching Mindfulness + Happiness Habits in Dubai

This is the year of HAPPINESS in Dubai. Yes the year of Happiness! 

"We must achieve happiness for the community through government work. This is what the Executive Council's annual agenda will focus on, to ease people's lives and provide the best services, which will provide with them a dignified living and preserve Dubai's standing as a modern international city that promotes modernity while maintaining its cultural and social traditions," Sheikh Hamdan commented with regards to Dubai's overall success, which is a source of inspiration to other cities around the world.”

It was such a great experience observing an emphasis on happiness and well-being woven throughout communities and schools. We had a fabulous time teaching the five Happiness Habits, along with some stress-less techniques and connection activities.

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[Interview] Teaching Happiness with Kris Connors

Wellness Warrior Spotlight
Name: Kris Connors
Occupation: K-5 School Counselor

How have you been teaching the happiness habits in your setting?
I have been teaching happiness habits to individual students and small groups in my office and extending this to classroom lessons so that teachers can continue this on in community circle time or when they see the class needs reminders about what is truly important.

What results have you noticed from teaching these skills?
Wow!  I have a success story about a 4th grade student who was in an EBD class last year (as a 3rd grader)! This student would have anxiety attacks at school, scream when upset, and not attend school due to having difficulties controlling her behavior or being overwhelmed.  She started this year at our school and I began implementing Generation Wellness strategies/lessons and happiness habits from the get go with her.  She was reluctant at first because she had a hard time trusting adults due to being new...

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[TED Talk] The Happy Secret to Better Work

  Source:https://www.ted.com/talks/shawn_achor_the_happy_secret_to_better_work

 

 

Quotable: "The greatest competitive edge advantage in the modern economy is a positive and engaged brain. When the human brain is positive, creativity triples, productivity rises by 31 and we live longer, healthier lives."

 

These research based habits include:
1. Gratitude
2. The Doubler
3. Exercise
4. Stillness
5. Kindness

 

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[Interview] Creating a Calming Corner with Jaimie Smith

 



Wellness Warrior Spotlight
Name: Jaimie Smith
Occupation: School Counselor

My Why: 
I wanted a ‘calm down spot’ in my classroom so that students could have a space to self-regulate their emotions and return to class. My goal for every student is that they will have a toolbox of calm down tools, and then independently choose what will work best for them in the moment and execute that strategy. I pre-teach all of these tools in my classroom guidance lessons, so if students visit my room, the Calming Corner is a very familiar space and the tools aren’t brand new.

Who: 
All students can successfully use the Calming Corner. It isn’t too complex for my Kindergarteners and it isn’t too ‘childish’ for my 5th grade boys. All students are intrigued by the aesthetics of the space and the amount of tools available for them. This space is truly able to be accessed by all students in my room and it is safe for everyone to use.

When:
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