MINDFUL TEACHER, MINDFUL SCHOOL
This book is elegant. For all of us aspiring to be educators it is an enduring reminder of our deep inheritance - what the great 13th century teacher, poet and mystic, Jalaludin Rumi, described as “two kinds of intelligence”: one acquired, the other all ready complete and preserved inside you. Surely, both these intelligences are important. With humility and wisdom, Kevin Hawkins, a long-time educator, middle school principal and mindfulness practitioner, helps us remember the bounty of the “already completed” and the ways what is innate informs what is “acquired.” With substance and grace, the lineages of education, psychology, and neuroscience converge as Hawkins illuminates the critically important role that mindfulness plays in the education of our children, their teachers, and we, their parents.
Saki F. Santorelli, EdD, MA
Professor of Medicine
Director, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Clinic (MBSR)
Executive Director, Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Health Care, and Society
University of Massachusetts Medical School
If there is hope for deep societal change, it surely must rest on rethinking and recreating our industrial-age education system. It is within this context that we need to view the growing interest in mindfulness in schools, which could, potentially, help guide us toward a system of education truly oriented toward human development. But it could also end up as just another in a long line of educational fads. Work like that of Kevin Hawkins – based on the science and practice of cultivating mindfulness and grounded in extensive practical experience in schools - could tell the difference.
Peter M. Senge
Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Sloan School of Management
This book is written for teachers, by a teacher. Kevin truly understands the joys of teaching and the desire to make a real difference to students’ lives, as well as the challenges and risks of burnout that most teachers experience on a daily basis. It provides teachers with the essential skills for self-care that will allow them to thrive in their professional and personal lives. It also offers a straightforward, natural progression: from being mindful, to teaching mindfully and engaging students, to teaching students mindfulness, and finally developing and sustaining a mindful school culture. Mindful Teacher, Mindful School is an excellent resource for those who want to begin, or to deepen, their own personal mindfulness practice, and to share their practice with students and the wider school community.
Author of A Still Quiet Place: A Mindfulness Program for Teaching Children and Adolescents to Ease Stress and Difficult Emotions
Kevin has managed something I haven’t seen before in a book aimed at educators – he has combined theory with practice and real life stories and with a credibility borne out of experience. Without doubt, mindfulness will play a huge part in supporting the wellbeing of students and teachers. One of the best ways to incorporate mindfulness in a school is for teachers to experience and model it, before they teach it. Crucially, this book shows how to do exactly that...
Director of Erimus Education; Head of IB MYP Development (2007-2013); Head of IB DP Development (2013-2015)
In Mindful Teacher, Mindful School, Kevin Hawkins presents a rich developmental approach to educating the whole child. This book illustrates how mindfulness can enrich teaching and the lives of teachers and students. But Hawkins also is appropriately cautious in suggesting that teachers take time to develop their own practice and awareness. The book is full of practices that can help teachers and all educators embody mindfulness in their daily life. This is quite a gift!
Mark T. Greenberg Ph.D
Bennett Chair of Prevention Research, Penn State University
Mindful Teacher, Mindful School, contains real depth of understanding about this important new mindfulness-based approach to education. Radiating from a central theme of teacher self-care, Kevin Hawkins invites the reader to explore the richness of truly international perspectives on mindful awareness and social emotional learning. In an easily readable and common sense fashion he skillfully weaves together research, practice exercises, educational applications, plus the author’s and other teachers’ own experiences. A rich and compelling tapestry, Mindful Teacher, Mindful School, is an essential text.
Richard C. Brown
Professor of Contemplative Education Naropa University
This is an elegant and practical guide to cultivating mindfulness in school. With great clarity, wisdom, and warmth, Kevin Hawkins illuminates the paths for being mindful, teaching mindfully and teaching mindfulness. This book explains both the science and practice of mindfulness in school context. It offers teachers not only helpful resources but also accessible steps towards transforming themselves, their students, and their schools.
Shui-fong Lam, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Psychology, The University of Hong Kong
Mindful Teacher, Mindful School is an invaluable resource for educators. Through his own experience as a school leader and classroom teacher, Kevin Hawkins offers a comprehensive, inspiring, and practical approach that makes mindfulness accessible to anyone working in school based settings. Each chapter beautifully builds on each other and helps us see how mindfulness can be a vehicle for not only transforming education but making the world a better place.
Meena Srinivasan, M.A., N.B.C.T
Author of Teach, Breathe, Learn: Mindfulness In and Out of the Classroom and Program Manager for the Office of Social and Emotional Learning, Oakland Unified School District
What really matters in education? This book argues that it is educating the mind and heart, equipping the next generation not only with knowledge, but also with how to think, with qualities of curiosity, compassion, playfulness and resilience. Drawing on his immense repository of teaching experience and with deep humility Kevin Hawkins offers an invaluable toolkit for teachers and schools. Anyone using this toolkit will be standing on the shoulders of a a very skilful teacher who embodies what he teaches.
Professor of Clinical Psychology University of Oxford
This book is indispensable for anyone who truly wants to understand what is involved in bringing mindfulness to K-12 education around the globe. Rather than seeing mindfulness as a set of classroom activities to be inserted into the status quo, Kevin Hawkins makes the case for the power of mindful awareness to be part of a much larger transformation of what and how we teach.
Proposing that we broaden the aims of education to include physical, mental and emotional well being, Hawkins situates mindfulness – first for adults and then for students - as a catalytic tool within this larger frame. Mindful Teacher, Mindful School not only offers everything that someone new to the field needs to get up to speed but he also pinpoints deeply important truths for those of us already active in the field. This is a must read!
Director of Mindfulness Programs PassageWorks Institute
This is a book clearly written by an educator who knows mindfulness in schools from the inside. The strongest evidence for this is that Hawkins never gets carried away. He recognises that mindfulness is not a panacea, that to implement it successfully in schools is a slow and steady process, and that above all it must begin with the teachers themselves. But Hawkins also recognises how transformative mindfulness can be, having experienced it so profoundly himself as an educator in many different contexts. His anecdotes give it plenty of colour (my favourite is ‘Billy and the Mosquito’), whilst the practical guidance – Chapter 7 on implementation for example – makes it of tremendous practical value.
Co-founder and Director, Mindfulness in Schools Project
In his new book Mindful Teacher, Mindful School, Kevin Hawkins takes us on a compelling personal and universal journey of self discovery that is at the heart of the art and discipline of mindfulness. Through this book, we learn that mindfulness has a rightful place in schools, as a powerful tool to help students learn to live in the present and improve their sense self awareness. Through anecdotes from schools around the world and through his own personal journey, Hawkins provides us with a down to earth and accessible approach for teachers and students alike to become more mindful human beings.
Dr. Arnie Bieber
Director, International School of Prague