Mindfulness training comes to Oak Knoll classroom thanks to Julie Brody
Leave it to community-minded Julie Brody to come up with a new program that benefits kids — teaching mindfulness at Oak Knoll School in Menlo Park. In simple terms, mindfulness means being present in the moment.
Julie, a former nurse, was introduced to mindfulness 15 or so years ago when she read The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. That led to her interest in meditation and eventually to the Mindful School in Oakland where she got certified to teach mindfulness to kids. There she learned that mindfulness practice decreases stress and anxiety, increases attention, improves interpersonal relationships, strengthens compassion, and confers a host of other benefits.
“My kids attended Oak Knoll so it was first on my list to contact,” says Julie, who is eager to get the word out about mindfulness for kids and its benefits. “And at the very first meeting, they said ‘yes.’ So for the past three years I’ve been doing 15-20 minutes in second, fourth and fifth grade classrooms.”
Julie has also taught mindfulness a bit at Philip Brooks and Menlo-Atherton High School. “I really believe in it,” she says. “Our culture puts so much pressure on kids and they’re kept so busy.
“It’s so meaningful and fun for me. The kids come up with these amazing things. I really want to spread the word about mindfulness programs for kids and the fact that schools like Oak Knoll are making time for it.”
Detailed information about mindfulness education in the classroom is found on the Mindful School website.
Photos by Linda Hubbard (c) 2017