Meditation, Mindfulness, Social Emotional Learning... Useful or Time Drain?
In New York State, a law that mandates adding mental health education to existing state-mandated health classes. Those classes already cover things like alcohol, drugs and tobacco. Signed in 2016 by Governor Andrew Cuomo, it will go into effect this year. Coupled with the states efforts to deal with Mental Health across boundaries from addiction, substance abuse, to anxiety by offering counseling and other virtual tools, starting at the schools is a strong policy and public health move. The Brownie Collective supports an experimental and researched based approach to these curriculums. While we are glad to see the start of the de-stigmatization of mental health with our youngsters we would hope for a non-traditional approach to this sensitive content.
In documentaries like Innsaei , children are articulating the functions of the brain and seamlessly connecting it to their day to day behaviors whilst learning coping mechanisms. We see that children can adapt to non-destructive behaviors quite easily when expectations are kept high and the best is assumed of them and is clearly demonstrated in manners, speech, and action.
For strong mental health programming implementation, The Brownie Collective recommends:
Intervene in the mental health of the adults in the building. Ensure all adults are on the same energetic wavelength.
Make “Wellness” a core value or component of the school culture.
Try to make discipline a morale builder instead of punitive all the time. Balance hot and cold reactions to disciplinary issues.
Have a strong positive reinforcement system in place.