Duval Dialogue – I tried Calm Classroom and here are my thoughts 

May 26, 2020For our final week of Mental Health Awareness Month, I decided to be adventurous and give Calm Classroom a try.

Calm Classroom? What is that?

I know some of you may be familiar with Calm Classroom because your child already practices it. For the rest of us — including me — this was a foreign idea. Calm Classroom is wellness initiative that uses relaxation exercises to help “calm” the mind thereby increasing its ability to focus and learn.

One of my colleagues shared this Calm Classroom guide with me, and so I picked out a few activities to try out myself.  Here are my thoughts. 

Preschool Belly Breathing  

This calming technique was really simple. There’s even an audio button that reads the exercise aloud so you can join your child and practice some belly breathing too. It probably took less than a minute, and it allowed me space to pause and relax. 

Three Good Things  

For this activity, I was asked to write down three things that I really enjoyed this week — things that made me feel good. It’s strange, because I could feel myself wanting to tie in something negative. For example, one thing I listed was that I had a fun movie night and ate some of my favorite snacks. But in my head, I was thinking, “But these snacks are all bad for me, and now I have to exercise them all off.” I guess I need to do this one more often and work harder to just love the good things in life.   

Sending Kind Wishes  

This feels a lot like praying — which I’m fine with because I love praying! Basically, you are vocalizing desiring good things for another person. It feels good. It feels like shifting the focus from myself and my own needs. Then, the exercise concluded with instructing me to desire these things for myself, which I had more trouble with for some reason. 

My takeaway?

So, I am not sure if I am now a calmer person (that wasn’t the goal anyway) but I did learn something about myself. I have a tendency and bad habit to counter positive thoughts with negative. That’s not a good thing, and something I realize I have to work on.

What will you learn by trying these out. Will you be like me, trying to spoil your own fun your first time doing Calm Classroom? 

Share some of the Calm Classroom exercises you tried. What was your reaction to them? What was challenging, and what was wonderful? Let me know, and share any other topics you’d like us to address with Duval Dialogue by contacting me at poolerm@duvalschools.org