Over the last few years, my school has been exploring mindfulness activities for our students.
While reading a book written by a NAVY SEAL,
I discovered an amazingly simple technique used by this NAVY SEAL to stay calm in stressful situations.
I gave it a try and…
Each day after lunch, my students use this amazing trick to calm down and get ready for work.
I thought other teachers would love to give this super simple technique a try to help their students get ready to focus or to take mindfulness breaks throughout the day.
I also think many teachers can use this technique for themselves.
My students were much more receptive to this mindfulness technique after finding out that a NAVY SEAL used it in difficult situations.
The technique only takes a few minutes, but it has a lot of benefits…
Boost working memory!
Increase the ability to focus!
Decrease emotional outbursts!
Increase cognitive flexibility!
Improve communication skills!
Strengthen the immune system and more!
Being mindful and in the moment is powerful, but it can be difficult for students to take quiet moments seriously, especially boys. However, when students learn that this technique is used by a SEAL, they are instantly on board.
I call it SQUARE breathing.
It takes just a few moments to teach your students.
I like to have my students do the technique right after lunch to start. It has worked wonders to get students to calm their minds and get ready for learning.
Now, anytime I notice the classroom getting off track, we just take a minute to SQUARE breath.
Here’s how I have found success with this technique.
First, I start a discussion about the NAVY SEALS.
Who are the NAVY SEALS?
What kind of stressful situations do they face?
Why do they have to remain calm?
What techniques do they use to remain calm?
After a short discussion, I explain to students how they can learn to focus on their breathing to help them reduce stress in difficult situations.
Click this link for the FREE poster.
Start with good posture…
Sit towards the very end of your chair. Your head should be even with your shoulders. Your back should be curved in, not slouched over. Your back should look like an s, not like a u.
Next, breath in through your nose for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 4 seconds, breath out for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 4 seconds, repeat.
Continue for 1 minute. That’s it!
I’ve found that it takes about ten days for students to “get it”.
At first, students will have a tough time sitting still. Gradually, the time can be increased and eventually students will be able to use the technique on their own.
Last year, I had a parent tell me in a conference that she was in a difficult situation in the car…
she was having a little bit of a meltdown when…
her son showed the technique we had used in class to her.
She gave it a try and it worked!
We can all use this technique, especially teachers!