The “Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child Model,” or WSCC, was created by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to highlight health and wellness components that affect adolescents throughout their school day, at home and in their community. The WSCC model includes health education, physical education and activity, nutrition environment and services, physical environment, social and emotional climate, counseling and psychological and social services. All components are important in helping schools provide a healthy environment consistent with the World Health Organization’s definition of health: “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” We are proud of our partners that have created innovative school programming that demonstrate the WSCC model. Georgia Breathes is one of them, read on!
Created and produced by Lady Inhale, Georgia Breathes aims to empower students and teachers with tools to create a healthy emotional and social school environment. Georgia Breathes believes in the power of: the breath to connect the mind and body, the teacher to connect students to each other, and Georgia to connect classrooms state wide.
Based on science and research, it takes 40 days to create a habit and break through negative mental blocks. That’s why Georgia Breathes Deep Breath Initiative, encourages schools throughout Georgia to participate in a deep breath initiative for 40 days.
Breath technology offers specific practices to students to adjust undesirable habits and allow for transformation, renewal, repair and regeneration both individually and as a classroom unit. Students learn four breaths, empowering them to break through negative blocks and create new habits. Each breath in the sequence is accessible, easy-to-learn, and a tool for creating the mind-body connection.
The four breaths taught to students are:
- Breath of Joy—Extend, expand, reach, release joy.
- Washing Machine—Wash in clarity, wash out dust. Wash in. Wash out.
- Wake Up Mountain—When your movement follows your breath, you feel more alive. Get up. Set up. Wake up.
- Lotus Breath—Root down into your heart. Rise up with your breath inside. Root to rise.
Schools joined the 40-day challenge during the Deep Breath Initiative’s statewide kickoff Sept. 11, 2018. All classrooms across the state were encouraged to breathe together. Breathing kits were provided to classrooms which included, “On the Same Breath,” breathing flags made in Nepal, each of the four breaths and poses, guided instructions, a 40-day breath tracker, student assessments and student reflections. Classrooms that missed the kickoff were encouraged to start when they were ready and to create their own schedule for their students.
Globe Academy in DeKalb County began learning the breaths a few month ago and had both teachers and students practice teaching them to fellow classmates.
“My students seem to be enjoying the process,” said a teacher from Global Academy. “We are practicing breathing after recess and the kids ask daily if we are going to do it.”
Oakhurst Elementary School in Decatur has also been participating in four breaths over 40 days. Parents are noticing a change in their children’s attitudes and academic performance.
“Usually my child shuts down and gets so frustrated when we try to read together,” said one Oakhurst parent. “Tonight, she didn’t. It took a while, but she didn’t shut down. She spent a long time talking about and demonstrating the different types of breath work she learned in PE. She never goes into detail like this. The breathing techniques are tools she can use when overwhelmed or frustrated when reading. She totally got it. It was such a win!”
To learn more about Georgia Breathes, visit https://georgiabreathes.org/