Mindfulness Conference for schools

Posted on: 24 Feb 2014

The Mindfulness Conference for schools is a cross association conference directed by Dr Anthony Seldon, which takes place at Loughborough University on Wednesday 12 March 2014.

The conference will demonstrate the value and methodologies of mindfulness to principals, heads and those in senior leadership. All proceeds will be going to the charity MIND.

Dr Anthony Seldon describes how mindfulness can help to combat the growth of depression and anxiety amongst young people.

“Mindfulness is a mind-body approach to well-being that can help you change the way you think about experiences and reduce stress and anxiety”, says Dr Seldon.

“It involves paying attention to our thoughts and feelings in a way that increases our ability to manage difficult situations and make wise decisions. It promotes trusting relationships, healthy living and psychological and emotional security.

“There is increasing research to show that mindfulness-based courses are effective interventions for a broad range of health problems and for reducing anxiety. Research also shows that perceived stress decreases following participation in a mindfulness intervention.”

Dr Seldon will be joined at the conference by: Chris Cullen, co-founder of the Mindfulness in Schools Project; Dr Mark Williamson, Director of Action for Happiness; Tamsin Ford, Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Exeter Medical School; Katherine Weare, Honorary Visiting Professor at the University of Exeter, Paul Jackson, Director of Education at SATIPS and Dr Colin Wilson, a Consultant Psychiatrist.

The conference will aim to show how Mindfulness in schools boosts concentration, depth of thought, happiness and achievement, something that Kevin Knibbs, Headmaster of Hampton School, has seen first-hand since it was introduced into the school curriculum.

“Mindfulness techniques help build confidence, well-being and focus, enabling pupils to flourish.

“One of the key aims of Hampton School is to ‘encourage every child to develop their full academic potential and to develop skills for life through the wide range of cultural, spiritual and sporting opportunities on offer.’ Mindfulness-based techniques certainly support this because they encourage and support the flourishing of young minds.

“We have invested in the training of six teachers from a range of subject specialisms who now deliver the course to all Fourth Year pupils.

“A key aspect of Mindfulness is helping us all to recognise unhelpful habits of self-criticism and to balance this with more discernment and kindness towards ourselves.

“A number of the techniques help pupils to ground themselves at times when the mind is distracted and so introduce more calmness and focus. With this often comes more confidence as well as encouraging top performance in sport, music, drama and exams.

“Our students look forward to studying Mindfulness and highly value its benefits both at school and in their personal lives.”

Mindfulness is all about being yourself, making the most of yourself, and making the most of the opportunities that life present to you.

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