Thought starters

  1. How could you start incorporating this strategy into your classroom?
  2. How often does Ms. Mechler use this strategy?
  3. What are the benefits of using this strategy?
I'm a first-year teacher, 63 years old, and teach 8th grade math to 2 classes. The kids are 'kids', rowdy, noisy and FUN FUN FUN!! I also have a long dance background and know the importance of learning about your own body -- I will adapt this to breathing, tensing up and relaxing muscles. Our classes are 80 minutes long, and one of those classes is the last one of the day. The kids are DONE with school by this time, and I think this will help, as we take (2) 5-minute 'brain breaks' for each class, each day :) thank you, thank you!!
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This is a great way to help students ease into different activities. It will also allow students to reduce anxiety before test and it is something they can apply to personal situations. The students seemed to enjoy the techniques used by the teacher. I liked how everyone follows the teacher and she easily leads them through the exercises. I will include this in my to do class list!
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Guided relaxation or exercise to me is an invaluable tool to enhance all children/ peoples learning. It is so calming. Great video!
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It is so nice to see this video and the way your students respond to relaxation in the classroom. I use yoga and relaxation poses in my classroom and it has an incredible effect on my students. The use of the term body scan is something I will add into our practice so they can begin to connect the feeling with the vocabulary. Congratulations on being a teacher who takes care of the whole student not just the academic brain!
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I would have never thought about doing this in the classroom without having seen this video. Students (and teachers) can bring a lot of (internal) distractions with them into the classroom. To me, this seems like an excellent strategy to get the class into the right frame of mind for learning. And, I think Anne is right in making this a constant routine from the beginning of the school year, especially for younger students where routine is paramount.
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  • Speaker 1: Go ahead and sit up nice and straight. You're going to listen to my voice. Close your eyes.

    Speaker 1: Go ahead and sit up nice and straight. You're going to listen to my voice. Close your eyes. Today we did a focused breathing activity, which is called a body scan. Let's start our focus at your feet. I want you to wiggle your toes. Focus on your toes. This was something that they have done before. And then all the way up to your lower back. Focus on going down your arm to your wrist and now to the palm of your hand. I help them bring their brain to a place where they're not thinking about what's going on outside their heads. They're really having to use their brain to focus on these different places of their body. Back up your right arm to your elbow and up to your shoulder. We practice probably two or three times a day. Can anybody tell me why we do that?

    Speaker 2: To be ready for the next thing.

    Speaker 3: To live in the present and focus on our breath.

    Speaker 4: Train our brains.

    Speaker 1: It's a great way to train your brain for moments of anxiety, fear, just as a way to calm the brain. It helps you to get yourself to a place where you're thinking logically. Really, you're taking your focus off of whatever that exterior thing is that's bothering you. Focus on your jaw, your mouth. I love the idea of starting the first day of school and getting those children used to the routines and procedures. It can be shortened, or it can be lengthened. And it just kind of depends on what your needs are with your students at that time. Up to your eyes. I want them to walk away with knowing that they can use this strategy in general-- when things are exciting, when they're worrying about something, or events that we're going to. See if you can see the back of your eyelids. Maybe there's something back there. So having that strategy of saying, "Ok, ok. I'm going to calm down, and I'm going to bring myself where I am right now," wherever you are, and then you're there. And out the top of your head and then you can slowly and gently open your eyes. Great focus. It's good for the teachers too.


Anne Mechler



All Grades / All Subjects / Tch Tools

Lesson Idea

Grades 9-12, All Subjects, Class Culture

Lesson Idea

Grades 9-12, ELA, Class Culture

Teaching Practice

All Grades / All Students / Class Culture