At Gaynor, teachers often incorporate mindfulness into their lessons, which helps students to practice focusing in the classroom and promotes a growth mindset. In Ms. Macedo’s class, students have been working to develop greater self-reflection skills. To start, they talked about challenges they faced the previous school year and identified obstacles they wanted to overcome. Using their discussion, students set a goal for this academic year and emblazoned it on flags inspired by Tibetan prayer flags. Goals included “finding kind friends,” “controlling volume in the classroom,” and “writing numbers and letters neatly.” The flags were strung together on a banner and hung over the window so that students can see their goals every day.
“I was proud of the students for not only reflecting honestly about the things that are difficult for them to do but also sharing so openly about those difficulties,” says Ms. Macedo. “Through the reflection and subsequent discussion, students quickly realized they weren’t alone in their struggles! Ms. Sebrow and I have recently begun overhearing students encourage and congratulate each other on working towards their goals which shows us what an incredible classroom community Room 202 is building.”