This is what I learned from my student
And I thought that a bottle of water bottle was simply a choice of practicality.
I'm very fussy about my bottle of water. It must be eco-friendly, non-leaking and pretty. Something that I can put in my rucksack and quench my thirst on my daily constitutional. However, that's not how my student Christina sees it. This is what she shared with me yesterday:
"You know, teacher, at the beginning of my geography exam a few days ago, I could sense my hands were starting to shake and my heart was racing. I knew my nerves had kicked in and I began to panic. The teacher handed in the exam paper and when I looked at the questions my mind went blank. I'd studied hard but why couldn't I remember anything? And then I recalled an exercise I did with you- using an object to stay in the present. So I looked around desparately, grabbed my water bottle and started feeling its smooth surface. Then I observed its shape, colour and slowly ran my fingers along the edges. I unscrewed its top and took a sip of the water. For a moment I closed my eyes and imagined myself feeling calm. Shortly I started to relax and after placing the bottle carefully on my desk, I took a few deep breaths. I looked at the clock above the blackboard and noticed that only two minutes had passed. Two minutes that ☑️helped me calm my amygdala, ✅brought to me inner peace, ☑️allowed me to recollect what I'd learned and pass my test with flying colours" I was listening to my student mesmerised by her decision to create her own mindful tool that she can use to tame her anxiety. I'd killed two birds with one stone- teaching her English and also showing her the power of mindful living. I think I'll use Christina's tip next time I need to bring some inner calmness. What have you learned from your students? Please, leave your comment below.
My book "101 activities to teach English mindfully" features 12 mindful breathing exercises that any English teacher can use in their class (and personal life).
The publication is suitable for all English/EFL teachers who are eager to introduce mindfulness in their classes. I have also described the principles of mindfulness and why they are beneficial for our students. So even if you are not familiar with mindful teaching, you are covered. The activities are fun, engaging and are appropriate for both traditional and online lessons.
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Until we meet again, be blessed