Music teacher aims to bring mindfulness into school

BECKLEY, WV (WVNS) — Crescent Elementary School music teacher Brittany McGuire said everyone in education has been suffering from unprecedented burnout throughout the pandemic.

“Since the COVID-19 pandemic, teacher burnout in the United States has been higher than it has ever been,” McGuire said. “There’s been a lot of extra stuff put on everybody, but especially in education there’s been a lot more stuff that people have to think about and worry about and just try to make sure we maintain that high quality education while all these other things are happening has caused a lot of stress and a lot of burnout.

McGuire thinks introducing mindfulness and wellness workshops into everyday school life can help change that. She worked to get her certification in yoga training and social-emotional learning with a 200-hour course that ends in June 2022.

McGuire sees every child in the school from kindergarten through fifth grade. She said students are also facing unprecedented anxiety after so many inconsistencies during crucial developmental years.

She said she believes mindfulness and music education can help them find consistency and stability.

“I really think mindfulness and a focus on social-emotional learning can really help them,” McGuire said. “There’s been a ton of research on mindfulness and how it can help students with self-esteem, self-efficacy, self-regulation.”

McGuire’s main goal is to help students manage their own emotions and social skills in a time when repeated isolation and rapidly changing lifestyles are impacting everyone.

“I would really like them to have skills to be able to identify and help them deal with their emotions. Also, a lot of communication skills come from that,” McGuire said.

McGuire is currently fundraising for yoga kits for her students. His fundraiser can be found here.

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