WellesleyWeston Magazine

FALL 2018

Launched in 2005, WellesleyWeston Magazine is a quarterly publication tailored to Wellesley and Weston residents and edited to enrich the experience of living in two of Massachusetts' most desirable communities.

Issue link: https://wellesleywestonmagazine.epubxp.com/i/1011917

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Page 152 of 207

successful." Challenge Success's philosophy is that, "society has become too focused on grades, test scores, and performance, leaving kids little time to develop the necessary skills to become resilient, ethical, and motivated learners." The Challenge Success Student Advisory Group has implemented a number of student-initiated activities at the high school, like Smarties candy for everyone during MCAS, finals week fun, and a visit from Barn Babies to help make school less stressful. Social and Emotional Programs Schools across the country are teaching mindfulness strategies to kids as young as kindergarten to provide them with long-term strategies for reducing stress. Early on, they learn techniques for relaxing their mind and body that they can use anywhere, not just in the classroom. "We have kids close their eyes and think of a really calm place, then breathe deeply," explained Goodman. "Some kids use the Calm app because the sound of waves can actually make your blood pressure go down." To practice mindfulness, you don't need to be in a room with dim lights, you can take a moment to look up into the sky and just listen. Anyone can do it. "Try picking out three different sounds," suggested Goodman. "Even practicing for 30 seconds a day can make a difference when you feel your heart begin to race." Wellesley Middle School has a social-emotional program called SEED (Social and Emotional Educational Development) to nurture mental wellness. "We look at every grade to help students think about their social and emotional health," said Principal Ito. "We also have a program that teaches students about self-care and developing self- identity as well as a community service day to help kids understand how they can positively impact and care for others." Both Wellesley and Weston schools use the Open Circle curriculum to encourage dialogue with peers and teachers. Principal Maguire added, "This fall we're 151 W e l l e s l e y W e s t o n M a g a z i n e | f a l l 2 0 1 8 fitness & health "kids can experience stress at any age"

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