Practical Mindfulness for Vibrant and Engaged Learners
In recent decades mindfulness meditation has shifted from being a largely obscure Buddhist concept to a mainstream construct used in business, sports, education and popular evidence-based psychotherapies. Its popularity is underpinned by compelling research including neuroimaging studies that demonstrate benefits for our brains, including our ability to attend to tasks and regulate emotions. In an education context, alongside the benefits of mindfulness practice are practicalities around meaningfully and effectively integrating another activity into a jam-packed curriculum (for wriggly kids and teens no less). This talk re-orientates to the core definition of mindfulness as a state of “moment-to-moment awareness”; a means of directing focus and attention, regulating emotions, and tolerating distress (for both students and teachers). Research into mindfulness is touched on, as are links between mindfulness and maintaining a growth mindset during learning activities. We discuss how mindfulness need not always be approached as a practice that exists alongside and independent of (as opposed to being integrated throughout) classroom activities. Suggestions are put forward around treating mindfulness as a flexible and ubiquitous classroom resource, for the benefit of teachers and students alike, both in social interactions and learning activities.
Greta Bradman is a provisional psychologist, opera singer, radio presenter, and mother of two primary school-aged boys. She works as a provisional clinical psychologist with children, adolescents, and adults, treating anxiety, depression, other clinical disorders, as well as offering resilience and performance coaching. A keen advocate for incorporating mindfulness into mental health, resilience and performance programs with children through teens and adults, Greta provides paneling, workshops and presentations in Australia, informed by clinical, positive, and performance psychology, and her performance career. Greta is also a faculty member at The School of Life (Australia) and is a radio presenter on ABC Classic FM. A freelance classical singer, Greta is signed with Universal Music (Decca) and works with symphony orchestras, opera companies, and ensembles around Australia, Europe, Asia and the USA. Most recently Greta sang the role of Mimì from Puccini’s opera La Bohème with Opera Australia in the Sydney Opera House.