Mindfulness Day Station #1: Yoga
Mindfulness Day Station #2: Art Therapy
One of our school counselors oversaw both the yoga and art therapy stations, so they were next to each other in our gym’s setup. Since she just had to oversee the yoga station, she had the freedom to sit at the neighboring art therapy table. She had coloring mandala pages with colored pencils, crayons, and markers. She brought clipboards, so students could spread out, sit on the floor, and get comfortable if they wanted. I also saw students take the coloring pages with them for later.
Mindfulness Day Station #3: Face Painting
One of our counselors partnered with an art teacher who had hosted a face-painting event before, and she also enlisted students to help paint. We had a budget that we used for our overall program, and some of that money went toward purchasing face paint. She had other basic materials with this like cups of water, small paintbrushes, and baby wipes for mistakes. This was one of our most popular stations! It was located right inside the door when students walked in, and they loved crowding around just to see what was being painted even if they weren’t getting something themselves.
Mindfulness Day Station #4: Practicing Gratitude
I made these foldable gratitude journals for a “Practicing Gratitude” station. The only prep was black and white copies ahead of time. Students could assemble, staple, write, decorate, and draw. Inside, there are guiding questions for reflecting on practicing gratitude.
Mindfulness Day Station #5: Play Therapy
For this station, we simply set up legos, play-doh, and puzzles. We put a few of the puzzles on some leftover yoga mats, and we were sure to include the box next to the pieces so students knew their end goal. On the ground to the side of the main table, we had jump ropes and hula hoops. This gave students something to do with their hands and or something physical to do that was also FUN!
Mindfulness Day Station #6: Puppies and Popsicles
We found a local organization of therapy dogs, and the volunteers were SO excited to bring their dogs to our school! We put this one outside the gym for obvious reasons. Our cafeteria has big, glass windows out front, so students could see the crowds and sense the excitement without even knowing what was going on for Mindful Generals Day.
Mindfulness Day Station #7: Silent Disco
This was my station! (To be honest, this is the one I was MOST excited about!) This was also the most expensive event we hosted. I ordered all of the equipment from Quiet Events.
Mindfulness Day Station #8: Resources
Social Workers and Mental Health Counselors: We had our two school social workers (one speaks Spanish) and our resident mental health counselor at our Mindfulness Day. They each hosted their own table with information to hand out to students. Many students stopped by and took something “for a friend.”
The overall perception data that has come from our event has been overwhelmingly positive. Our district did a little feature video and posted it on their Facebook page to which we received many praise-worthy comments… other students and parents want it at their schools!
Students ran back to their classrooms to tell their teachers about the event if they went at lunch without their class. One student posted on Instagam “this is the happiest I’ve been all year!” with a picture of her and her friends eating popsicles outside. Another told me at the silent disco “this is the best thing y’all could have done EVER!” The positive reports from this event are enough to motivate me to put something like this together EVERY year… even if it is a lot of work.