Mindfulness Mondays: a session many teachers lead during class to give students the opportunity to relax, recharge, and clear their minds. The mindfulness program was developed by students in Berkeley International High School (BIHS) with the goal of benefiting teachers and students. The program was created with recordings of sessions to help students meditate and relax. While some have questioned whether the full Mindfulness Monday program wastes valuable class time, the positive outcomes of mindfulness clearly outweigh the minimal class time lost to it.
After the weekend, many students have taken their minds off of the previous week’s school work. A short class period of 43 minutes would serve better as a review of the last week’s work, rather than a lesson where students must learn new material and effectively understand it. During 43 minutes, it is more beneficial for students to have a mindfulness practice where they can truly recharge and prepare themselves for the stressful and busy week ahead. Berkeley High School (BHS) is lucky to have a program that prioritizes the mental health of students, and they must take advantage of this opportunity.
Stress is one inescapable feeling among high school students. Mindfulness breaks are an island in the sea of overwhelming stress caused by homework, classwork, friendships, and even home situations. While a short mindfulness session won’t be able to fix all the factors contributing to stress, it can certainly help. Some may argue that giving up class time to do mindfulness is a waste of time. However, according to the American Psychological Association, “Researchers reviewed more than 200 studies of mindfulness among healthy people and found mindfulness-based therapy was especially effective for reducing stress, anxiety, and depression.” Even though mindfulness could be an activity done at home, most students are trying to balance sports, clubs, and homework, and it’s hard to find time to be mindful with such a busy schedule.
Although precious class time on Mondays is replaced with mindfulness, the rewards are just as high as the benefits of learning new things. BIHS students created this program for a reason, and it would be illogical to not use it, especially considering that students find it helpful. Overworked students are not healthy students; BHS must use Mondays to allow students to recharge by continuing with mindfulness practices.