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Artificial Rock #143

Arts Education, Language Arts, Planning, Science, Social Studies

In this challenge, students are encouraged to reflect on creating an understanding around social-emotional wellness that fits their lives.

 

Sculpture Title:

Artificial Rock #143

 

Learning Lens:

Health and Social Education

 

Curriculum Access:

Science, Social Studies, Art, English, Counseling/Psychology, Career and Personal Planning

 

BIG IDEA:

Social, Emotional and Mental Wellness

 

Guiding Question:

How can we practice mindfulness anywhere?

 

Strategies and Approaches:

Socratic questioning, prompting, experiential learning, discussion

 

Background for Students:

At times life can be difficult. Not a day goes by without worrying about something: am I starting to get a cold? Do you think he/she likes me? I wish this traffic would clear up so that I’m not late again. If only… What about the future? Our minds fill up with thoughts all day long. It is important to recognize all of the emotions our thoughts trigger, from anger and anxiety to doubt. However, it’s about how we handle our emotions that help us become grounded and centered in our life journeys. Practicing mindfulness in our everyday lives can help us with daily pressures and help our minds and bodies become more clear.

 

Materials:

Poster board paper, markers, pens

 

Curricular Challenge:

15-20 mins, Open/Reflect: Welcoming Multiple Interpretations

  1. Students are encouraged to disengage from their recent experience and their busy surroundings to practice mindfulness.
  2. Direct students to ‘mindfully’ (quietly/individually) explore the piece and develop their own interpretation. More information on mindfulness for the classroom can be found here.
  3. Direct each student to share their interpretation of the piece without judgement.
  4. Connect students’ individual interpretations to the background information provided above.

35 mins, Activity: Mapping Mindfulness

  1. Advise students that this piece is located on a busy intersection. People are constantly travelling to and from destinations, wrapped up in their individual thoughts, while a whirlwind of activity is happening around them. Have students reflect on this process by providing them with the following interactive art activity.
  2. Direct a group of students to trace another student’s two feet on the poster board.
  3. On the left foot have the students insert all of the activities they have completed that day: ride a bus, eat breakfast, and so on.
  4. Next direct students to circle all of the activities that could trigger stress or anxiety.
  5. In response have students list various activities on the right foot that can help them de-stress, e.g. play the piano, read, etc.
  6. Have students ask five people on the street what they do to de-stress. They can add the public’s responses to the right foot.

10 mins, Debrief:

Find out if students understand the important factors needed to build a healthy mindful life? Do they understand that not acknowledging stress or self-defeating actions can affect our body and mental health? Encourage the students to understand that it is important to disentangle from their environment as difficult as this may seem. Working towards undoing mental knots and becoming emotionally aware, youth are able to create a better self, an authentic person that can truly engage with their world, their school, and community.