by Dr. Lisa Lenhart, Ph.D.; Child Psychologist http://llenhartphd.webs.com/ Mindfulness is one of the new concepts that is being used in a variety of contexts, including in schools with children. Many people recognize mindfulness as originating with meditation, creating a calm and balanced inner world, and focusing on the creation of greater awareness of what we are doing in the moment. Helping children develop the capacity for mindfulness has begun to be recognized as very helpful in terms of children being able to manage stressors in their lives, make better decisions, and demonstrate greater respect and tolerance for other people. In general, when working with children on developing greater mindfulness, this begins with teaching them to experience brief moments of awareness- of breathing, of body sensations, of themselves in the moment. The younger the child, the briefer these moments of awareness will be. Parents can engage their children in exercises that will promote the development of greater awareness of themselves and the world in the moment:
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