Smiling Mind aims to build happier, healthier and more compassionate young people. Our Mindfulness Meditation programs are designed to assist people in dealing with the pressure, stress and challenges of daily life.
Smiling Mind's Education Programs are designed:
- As a preemptive and proactive tool to enhance mental health and wellbeing
- To arm students with the skills to better manage stress and build resilience
- To encourage participants to feel calm, clear and content.
The program has been developed to complement existing mental health, wellbeing and pastoral care programs, and can be used in a variety of ways, including:
- As part of classroom activities, session training, daily routine or roll call
- As part of wellbeing or pastoral care programs, sessions or lessons
- As a general supplement and support to the everyday curriculum.
In this vein, Smiling Mind has partnered with KidsMatter as our Mindfulness Meditation programs can be used by participating KidsMatter schools to effectively fulfil program components and Target Areas.
You can find further information on the KidsMatter program here
or you can view the joint resource and information flyer here
In these capacities, the Smiling Mind Program may:
- Encourage participants to be focused on the present moment when engaged in set activities
- Provide a grounded start to the day/ session/ training
- Encourage focused attention
- Increase levels of empathy with fellow students.
We promote Smiling Mind as a stress management and resilience tool, and see it as an accessible, simple and affordable way to provide pre-emptive mental health strategies to young people (and adults!). A great way for people to understand Smiling Mind and Mindfulness Meditation a bit more, is to watch this video with our youth ambassador Oliver Forbes
There are various ways of implementing the program. We have designed it so it is highly flexible and can be used to suit the needs of the curriculum, school environment and of course, students.
The audio files can be streamed live from the website via the Resource Centre, or for easy plug and play use, can be downloaded for free as Podcasts via iTunes (we have a Podcast for each age-specific program). Once downloaded, the tracks can be burnt to a CD and played off a speaker, or played directly from the computer.
Suggested methods of implementation:
1. Group meditation.
Teacher plays the meditation via a CD, computer or speaker and the class listens to it as a group.
2. On devices.
Individuals register their own account and take themselves through their own journey (both during set class times and in their own time) on the App or website, using iPad/iPhone or laptop.
Create a class account and work through the program together. This can be particularly great as the website is highly visual and creates an additional level of engagement that way. It also means that the class can participate in the pre and post-evaluations as a group.
4. On an individual as-needs basis.
Either as some ‘timeout’ or downtime as needed within class, or within a counselling-type setting. This can be useful if you come across a young person who is particularly worked up or agitated - if you think they would respond well, you can suggest they do a meditation (or you do it together) before you have a chat.
5. Referral tool.
Teachers, nurses and counsellors can refer young people to Smiling Mind for them to use outside of the school environment.
As there is an Adults program also, Smiling Mind is something you can implement amongst staff as well - to provide them with a tool in dealing with stress and building resilience for themselves in and out of the classroom. And of course, if staff are engaged in the program this will flow onto to the students.
The Smiling Mind program is available for four different age groups:
- 7-11 years
- 12-15 years
- 16-22 years
- Adults (can also be used for staff training)
Some young people may find the recordings in the age group above or below them more suitable. We recommend teachers/ facilitators listen to a few tracks from different age groups to decide which is most appropriate for their group.
Each age-specific program runs for an initial 8-10 week period. The program is comprised of short .mp3 audio sessions, each only 5-15 minutes long.
There are three types of sessions that participants will be guided through:
These outline the key learnings of Mindfulness Meditation. As the program progresses, these Introductory Sessions introduce and explore different aspects of being mindful. For example, Exploring the Breath or Exploring Thoughts.
Click here to listen to an example Introductory Session from the age 12-15 program
Daily Mindfulness Guides:
The Daily Mindfulness Guides consolidate the learnings of the Introductory Sessions. The Daily Mindfulness Guides are designed to be used every day after each new Session, before moving onto the next Introductory Session.
Click here to listen to a Daily Mindfulness Guide from the age 7-11 program
Take Home Activities:
These are additional recordings and/or PDF handouts, which assist in incorporating mindfulness and its benefits into everyday activities, outside of formal meditation practice. For each Introductory Session, there is a corresponding Take Home Activity.
Click here for an example Take Home Activity pdf. from the age 7-11 program or here for a corresponding audio file
Once the initial 8-10 weeks has been completed, it is recommended that any or all of the audio recordings be used continually as daily meditations.
How to sign up and get started
To implement the Smiling Mind program within your classroom or organisation, please complete the free registration here
. (Note, this will sign you up for the Education Program only. If you would like to sign up to multiple programs at once, click here
We ask you to register so we can keep in contact with you whilst you are administering the program. Once registered, you will be able to access our Resource Centre. This contains a suite of Learning Activities, Audio Files, Teachers’ Manuals and Bite Sized Meditations for each of the four age-specific groups.
Simply follow the prompts, click on the age group or program desired and you will be able to play the audio files straight from the website or download them onto your own computer/iPad.
Alternatively, all of our meditations are available for free download as Podcasts via iTunes.
The Manual for Teachers/Facilitators provides you with the information needed to implement the group program. Upon registering, you will be required to fill out a short registration survey about the environment and intended participants of the program. This will take approximately 5 minutes to complete.
You will receive two further emails from Smiling Mind once you have commenced the program; one at the halfway mark, and another at your completion date. These emails will ask you to briefly log your progress and thoughts.
Please note, we are committed to protecting and respecting your privacy in accordance with the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth). Should Smiling Mind wish to use any personal information provided, we will only do so upon receiving written permission from yourself or your organisation.