Schools serving millions of students in communities devastated by hurricanes Harvey and Irma face a daunting challenge as they attempt to begin a new school year in the midst of tragedy. Students are returning to school having experienced the death of a friend or family member, the loss of their homes and possessions, and many lost days of valuable class time.
Pure Edge is a national leader in providing open educational resources and professional development services that include self-care of staff and daily classroom integration of brain breaks and other techniques that promote social, emotional and academic development. Pure Edge is giving educators open access to the online curriculum, which provides session plans and exercises for breathing, movement, and mindfulness.
“Studies have shown that teaching mindful movement, breathing and focus has a positive and life-changing impact on students and their teachers,” said Pure Edge Executive Director Terry Grier, a former Houston ISD superintendent. “We understand the challenge facing school administrators and teachers as they seek to rebuild their school communities. That’s why we are encouraging school districts to take advantage of these resources, even if it’s simply the addition of a 1-minute breathing exercise at the start of class. We know from teachers who are already using the health and wellness curriculum that these techniques can open the mind, even during times of trauma, to learning.”
The Pure Edge curriculum has been adopted by more than a dozen school districts across America.
In San Marcos Consolidated ISD in Central Texas, a region that has experienced severe flooding emergencies, Superintendent Michael Cardona is implementing Pure Edge district-wide to help staff and students cope with the trauma that typically follows a natural disaster.
“A crack of lightning can have people on edge in this area. What has happened in the Houston area, Florida, and parts of Central Texas, with four major floods in the past five years, creates a significant amount of trauma for kids and families,” Cardona said at a recent training session where teachers accessed the curriculum on smartphones and practiced breathing and movement techniques. “Pure Edge was a natural fit because students can’t learn if they’re not settled emotionally. Taking brain breaks and just calming the body down benefits our staff and our students. And in this day and age, I think it’s really important to just stop for a minute and prioritize our health and our wellness.”
Pure Edge’s proprietary curriculum is the subject of ongoing research being conducted by Stanford University.
School districts interested in receiving free curriculum may access it here: http://pureedgeinc.org/curriculum.
Russell Case, Director of Partnerships
SOURCE Pure Edge Inc.
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