Mossman’s St Augustine’s School launches world-first whole-school wellbeing program.
This year St Augustine’s School, Mossman launched a world-first, evaluated trial of ‘Kichido – The Path of Positivity’. The program, introduced by Workplace Wellbeing Institute, includes a mindfulness-based, slow, rhythmic and integrated breathing, movement and relaxation technique that teaches the foundation skills of being grounded, centred and present. Before school starts each day, the entire school participates in the breathing practice to set the tone for the day.
“We use Kichido for all students, staff and any parents/caregivers that would like to stay and join us to start the day together in a peaceful way,” said Kerrilee Beaumont, School Counsellor at St Augustine’s School, Mossman.
“The Year 6 class are instrumental in the program and help students to focus on their breath as the Kichido Leaders facilitate the program using ‘breathing spheres’ to assist the students to slow everything down. Low, slow and rhythmic breathing switches on the body’s relaxation response. The Kichido leaders encourage the students to inhale loving kindness for themselves, and on the exhale, spread loving kindness far and wide.”
According to Kerrilee, the first breathing practice helps students to feel grounded, which assists in the creation of a true sense of internal safety and security.
“This is an essential life skill for creating and maintaining healthy and respectful relationships.”
The next stage of the practice helps students to become centred and tune into our second brain or ‘gut-brain’ according to Kerrilee, who said feedback from students, staff and parents has been very positive.
“The idea of the whole school starting the day together by practising Kichido is so we can head into the school day feeling centred and grounded and ready to learn,” said Kerrilee.
Students and staff will be providing feedback to track the impact Kichido has on wellbeing, compassion satisfaction, secondary traumatic stress and burnout. Preliminary data will be available for presentation at the Trauma Aware Schooling Conference in June.