Mindfulness Newsletter

March 2019--#mindfulAISD

Mindfulness Resources Featured in This Newsletter...

  • Mindfulness for Staff -- Free Yoga Class on your Campus

  • Professional Learning -- AISD Staff Mindfulness Retreat

  • Classroom/School Implementation -- Mindfulness Tips for Test Taking

  • For Families -- Screen Time Management Apps

  • Equity -- Ed Week Leaders to Learn From: AISD’s Angela Ward

  • Books of the Month -- 3 New Books

  • Technology -- How Schools Are Bringing Common Sense, Mindfulness to Screen Time

  • Athletics -- Undaunted Athlete

  • SEL Newsletter & Blog -- Mindfulness

  • Mindful Happenings in AISD -- Highlights


For more regular mindfulness updates, please follow me on Twitter, @mrbutler629. I post regularly, providing tips and highlighting mindfulness happening across the district. Also, feel free to use #mindfulAISD when posting about mindfulness & email me suggestions for what to include in future newsletters.

Mindfulness in Austin ISD is a secular practice. Any mention of the words yoga or meditation in resources are not an endorsement of any type of religious practice. We believe in honoring all of our students' and families' cultures and beliefs, and providing scientifically proven resources to help with Academic, Social & Emotional Learning.

Background Photo: Bluebonnets in TX...Happy Spring!

Mindfulness For Staff -- Free Yoga Class On Your Campus

Mindfulness in schools starts with the adults. Here's some goodness for y'all. :)

The Community Yoga Certification class I'm attending through Amala Foundation is full of eager students (myself included) who would like to come teach yoga to teachers in AISD. The class has a Culturally Responsive, Trauma Informed, Community Focused lens and it's full of amazingly inspiring people.

Please take a moment to fill out this brief form if you'd like a free yoga class for teachers on your campus in March or April. The class can be anywhere from 30-60 minutes and we'll provide mats if teachers need a mat. Priority will be given to the first 10 campuses who apply.

BIG NEWS: We received approval to put campus mindfulness sessions on HCP so attendees can receive professional learning credit for attending. Each 30 minutes is worth .5 credits. Say what?! CEUs for Self-Care?! You heard that right! This also could be used for Exchange Day Credit. :)

And here's our compilation of mindfulness related self-care resources.

Mindfulness Professional Learning through HCP -- AISD Staff Mindfulness Retreat

Mark your calendars!!! Saturday, April 13th 9am-1pm AISD Staff Mindfulness Retreat at Zavala Elementary! Please join us for this awesome morning of self-care that will feature keynote and classes from Yoga N Da Hood & more. HCP Sign Up Coming Soon!

Also, Check out the Spring 2019 Mindfulness In Schools Sessions! The Mindfulness 101 & 201 Course class size has been expanded to 30. Click on the links to go directly to HCP to sign up.

Tuesday, March 26th Mindfulness 101 AND 201 8:30am-3:30pm @ Blanton Museum

Thursday, March 28th Culturally Responsive Mindfulness 8:30am-3:30pm @ Amala Foundation

Thursday, April 25th Mindfulness 301 8:30am-3:30pm @ Blanton Museum

Tuesday, April 30th Librarian Mindful Maker Spaces 1pm-4pm @ Blanton Museum

Classroom/School Implementation -- Mindfulness Tips for Test Taking

That dreaded S word is around the corner and this is a good time to teach strategies for test taking if you haven't already started. This Education's Voice blog post features a handful of great mindfulness strategies for test taking.

Mindfulness for Families -- Screen Time Management Apps

This ScreenAgers link has great resources for screen time management. There are app suggestions, article links and organizations. Share freely with families.

As a reminder, you can always find family resources on bit.ly/mindfulfams.

Mindfulness & Equity -- Ed Week Leaders to Learn From: AISD's Angela Ward

Check it out, y'all! AISD's own Angela Ward was just featured in Education Week's Leaders To Learn From! I've had the honor of working with Angela, AISD's Race & Equity Administrative Supervisor, quite a bit over the last few years. She has always been very supportive of mindfulness and how it lends itself to equity work in education. Go Angela!!!

Mindfulness Books of the Month

Mindful Technology -- How Schools Are Bringing Common Sense, Mindfulness to Screen Time

Check out this We Are Teachers article that addresses screen time in schools. "From tracking screen time to phone-free Fridays, how schools are encouraging students to reflect on their tech use."

Mindfulness & Athletics -- Undaunted Athlete

Check out Undaunted Athlete, an app with helpful resources on their site as well. "Our mindfulness training is helping competitive athletes build th‍‍‍eir confidence, play their best, and become resilient in the face of adversity."

Shout to Lanier Boys Basketball Coach, Joe Pendell, for sharing this resource.

SEL Newsletter & Blog -- Mindfulness

Mindful Happenings in Austin ISD

Here are a few mindfulness highlights from across the district. Email me or tag your tweets with #mindfulAISD so I can highlight your work in future newsletters.

Ms. Beasley & Casey Elementary in the Statesman

Robin Beasley, 4th grade teacher at Casey Elementary, was featured in the Statesman using Stop Breathe Think! Check out the Statesman article. Go Ms. Beasley!!!
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AISD Student Voice @ SXSWedu

"The crew is back together for @SXSWEDU! Come check us out on 3/6 @ 12:30, Hilton Salon B: "Students Speak Up Re: Safety & Comfort in School." Sts came up w/ topics & they'll educate us on: play, student choice, test anxiety, gun violence & social skills. @AISDSupt @AustinISDSEL"

-Tweet from Yours Truly :)

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Mindful Student-Athletes @ SXSWedu

"Thanks @mrbutler629 for working with students as they prepare to present at SXSWedu tomorrow. Check them out, Mindfulness and Student Athletes.@GusGarciaYMLA #SXSWEDU2019 #parenteducator #AISDproud"

-Tweet from Principal Jackson

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After School Teacher Yoga @ Oak Springs

"Doing amazing things for #selfcare @OakSpringsMed Teaching yoga to our amazing educators on Friday afternoons make me happy!! Come join us!! #justbreathe #gettingstrong #upsidedown #mindfulness"

-Tweet from Tania Dymkowski

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Favorite Poses in Pre-K @ Becker

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Mindful Classrooms: The Educator Guide

Thanks to everyone who requested a PDF of Mindful Classrooms: The Educator Guide. It's humbling and a huge honor to know that a book I wrote is being utilized in AISD and beyond. I'm happy to share that I was able to donate 844 copies of the book to AISD staff! The book will be published by Free Spirit Publishing in April. Thanks for all your support, y'all!

#mindfulAISD archives

Mindfulness Newsletter Archives (Access all Mindful AISD Newsletters from 2016-2019)

Sign Up for Mindfulness Support

If you haven't filled out the #mindfulAISD Google Form (below) and want to highlight your work and/or receive mindfulness support, please check it out. It only takes a moment to complete. Know someone in AISD interested in mindfulness? Send them this newsletter for them to fill out the Google Form.


James Butler, M.Ed.

SEL Mindfulness Specialist

2014 Austin ISD Teacher of the Year