Over the past several weeks, faculty members participated in a “mindfulness project.” The project, led by local instructor Nina Mongendre-Samonov, helps teachers identify the students’ emotional states and how they can affect the learning process. Mongendre-Samonov provided tools and exercises to manage negative emotions, and restore students’ well-being and focus in the classroom.

Instructor Nina Mongendre-Samonov

Funded by the FASP Parents’ Association, faculty members participated in the mindfulness project during a short series of Zoom sessions. Mongendre-Samonov, a Neurological Empowerment Coach located in the Hopewell area, provided a series of activities, discussions and new resources to help identify key emotions that teachers often encounter throughout the school day. Faculty members can then take these resources to the classroom, such as observing moments of calmness and even stretching to refocus.

Head of Maternelle Carine Hinant feels that the sessions help identify emotional states, especially in young learners.

“As an educator, I am always looking for widening my practices to improve our students’ well-being,” said Hinant. “I am very grateful that FASP allowed us to take part in these mindfulness sessions which have helped me to develop a better understanding of the students’ emotional state and lead me towards new rituals to help them cope with their emotions.”

While using the brain-based model of neuro-emotional coaching, Mongendre-Samonov provides her clients with a powerful way to heal trauma, as well as tools for them to experience the healing power of feeling and allowing emotions.

“It’s not you, it is your brain,” said Mongendre-Samonov. “Often, our brain’s first instinct is to go into survival mode, a state of fight/flight/freeze/appease in which we cannot process our emotions and do not have access to our executive functions such as learning new information.”

Since the sessions, faculty members conducted classroom activities to restore their students’ well-being. In second grade, students took a brief moment after lunch to breathe, stretch and refocus:

 

 

 

 

 

 

To learn more, visit Nina Mongendre-Samonov’s website here: https://www.ninasamonov.com/