Austin ISD Mindfulness Newsletter

October 2019--#mindfulAISD

Featured This Month...

  • Personal Practice -- Gratitude Journaling
  • Professional Learning -- Mindful Education Summit & AISD Staff Mindfulness Retreat
  • Staff/Campus Mindfulness -- Mindful Attention Awareness Scale
  • Classroom Implementation -- 5 4 3 2 1 Grounding Practices
  • Mindful Happenings in AISD -- Shouts to Lively, Houston & Norman Sims
  • Related Newsletters & Blog -- CP&I and SEL

Reminder: 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.

Photo: Austin City Limits Music Festival


Gratitude Journaling

I learned about this cool research from my SEL colleague Katie O'Neil, and have been implementing gratitude journaling into my daily mindfulness routine. I've found it very helpful. Check out the article that talks about the research. "New research is starting to explore how gratitude works to improve our mental health." -Joel Wong & Joshua Brown

Reminder: Headspace , Calm and Stop Breathe Think offer FREE subscription services for educators.


Mindful Education Summit--FREE Online Event from Awake Network & Oct. 16th-20th

Fall AISD Staff Mindfulness Retreat--Register Before It Fills Up

Limited space available. Register below...

Huge shout out to Brooke Elementary for hosting our 1st edition of the Fall AISD Staff Mindfulness Retreat. I'm so excited that award-winning hip-hop duo/overall incredible people, Riders Against the Storm will be our keynote and also teach some classes during the Retreat! Below is the tentative schedule. There is more information on HCP. Unfortunately, due to liability, no childcare will be offered.

9:00 -- Registration & Welcome

9:15 -- Keynote from Riders Against the Storm

10:00 -- Session 1 (participants will choose from a selection of classes)

11:00 -- Session 2 (participants will choose from a selection of classes)

12:00 -- Session 3 (participants will choose from a selection of classes)

12:45 -- Closing

Big thanks to Amala Foundation for putting this amazing free event together for AISD staff.

Mindfulness 101/201 & 301

Register below...

More sections & varieties will be offered in the Spring and Summer. Remember, Isolating Race is a prerequisite for Mindfulness 101, 201 & 301. More Isolating Race will be available next semester as well. See the August newsletter for details behind the "why."


Mindful Attention Awareness Scale

How mindful are you? And what exactly does it mean to be mindful? This Mindful Attention Awareness Scale from Positive Psychology provides some interesting insight and an actual self-assessment. Remember to show yourself compassion and just use it as an awareness tool. There is no prize for being most mindful. :) This could be a great activity during PLCs, Faculty Meeting, etc.

**Additionally, is your campus interested in a regular mindfulness practice opportunity for staff members? The SEL Department has partnered with the Amala Foundation to provide this opportunity to a select number of campuses. The service is free of charge to campuses. Fill out the form below or click here to apply. Application deadline extended to October 15th


Elementary Resource

A brief video from the Mindful AISD YouTube Playlist guiding you through a 5-4-3-2-1 mindfulness exercise which is a great grounding practice. This video could be used for secondary as well.
5-4-3-2-1 Mindfulness Exercise

Secondary Resource

Below are some additional resources for the 5-4-3-2-1 mindfulness exercise that can be used as a coping technique for anxiety.

Books of the Month

Suggestions to add to your classroom or school library if you don't already have them.
The Mamba Mentality by Kobe Bryant

From Amazon: "For the first time, and in his own words, Bryant reveals his famously detailed approach and the steps he took to prepare mentally and physically to not just succeed at the game, but to excel. Readers will learn how Bryant studied an opponent, how he channeled his passion for the game, how he played through injuries. They’ll also get fascinating granular detail as he breaks down specific plays and match-ups from throughout his career."

My Magic Breath: Finding Calm Through Mindful Breathing by Nick Ortner

“Polizzi’s airy watercolors nicely harmonize with the interactive aspect of the text, giving the book potential as either a resource for anxious readers or as a choice for group readalouds.” (Publishers Weekly)


Click on images below to open tweets.

Additional Resources

CP&I and SEL Newsletters & Blog

Check out this month's Cultural Proficiency & Inclusiveness Newsletter and Social Emotional Learning Newsletter & Blog

Compilation of Mindfulness Resources for Educators

Free App Subscriptions, Research, Articles, Videos & More.

Mindful AISD Newsletters from 2016-2019

Every Mindfulness Newsletter from the last 3 school years.

Sign Up for Mindfulness Support

Interested in the monthly mindfulness newsletters? Want to highlight your mindfulness work in AISD? Would like additional mindfulness support in AISD? Fill out the form below.

James Butler, M.Ed.

Austin ISD SEL Mindfulness Specialist

2014 Austin ISD Teacher of the Year

Author of Mindful Classrooms: Daily 5-Minute Practices to Support Social-Emotional Learning