Category Archives: education

Glugs Wine, Listens to Silence

Are you Tuned in?

Just imagine being together as a family and really listening to each other, responding, and emotionally tuning in. Can you hand on heart say you do this, that nobody is distracted by anything else going on? You are truly present and in the moment… ah nice.  Then the kids have a disagreement, it escalates, and it all goes horribly wrong, (keeping it real) and it does, let’s face it.  What do you do in the eye of the storm – mum or dad in the middle?  Is their argument a result of unresolved conflict,which the kids are too upset about and maybe too immature to let go of.  Perhaps, they haven’t had a space to talk about their upset or be listened to?  Does it ever feel just a little like groundhog day?

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Decline in Listening Skills 

Research has found a significant decrease in children’s listening skills over the past decade,  can you guess why? I wonder too if this doesn’t apply to adults and sitting together as a family.  I’ve put together a ‘listening’ programme which  I’m sharing with the children and colleagues  I teach alongside  in school.

Meanwhile, parent(s) finishes meal and glugs more wine and enjoys listening to silence, and tunes out. Silent is listen rearranged.

What do you DO after a family UPSET, how does it leave you feeling and what’s that like?

What do you Need?

How do we create time for family connection, spaces to talk to one another and be heard?

Today, just become AWARE of the above.  And Pause. (a previous blog about Pausing) .  I have a photo of an owl, which reminds me to  listen, notice and be wise. Often, I think of the owl when I have a quiet time or meditate. Perhaps imagery will help you too?

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I’ll share listening ideas on my social media page this week. @FrustrationExpert

I hear you

So right now what do you need? What can make family life calmer?

Each month, I’m  creating a regular morning of family connection which will respond to your needs and those of your  family, it will be ‘agile’ and ‘flexible’ and at the moment in Guildford, venue tbc. I hear you.

What do you like best?

What could help you to disconnect from all the busyness of life, to be more present and bonded as a family? Have a read of this link here  and see what you like best about the mornings. Come along with your children to learn some of these simple skills and take them away to use with your family between sessions. You will feel more relaxed, more present to listen and this will filter across family life. Plus they’ll be ongoing support for you between meet ups. If your children prefer not to join you then come by yourself, as I’ll share ideas for you to use at home. 

Seeking Open Hearts & Curious Minds

Please do share this with any family you think would benefit from joining us. I’ve not specified ages, just a willingness to give it a go with an open heart and curious mind.

Jane x

#frustrationexpert

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‘Miss, The Elephants’

Ladybird Ladybird 

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‘Please put that back where you found it,  hurry up and get back into line,’ words shouted to a 6 year old child in a school I was teaching in a while ago. The little girl had a ladybird in the palm of her hand and was showing it to a friend.  She set the ladybird free and lined up in the straight line with all the other children.

‘Miss, the elephant’ 

A teaching mentor once advised me ‘Don’t be the teacher who misses the elephant walking past the classroom’

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When I was teaching in Tanzania, we often had monkeys visiting the classroom, no matter how many times they came in to steal crumbs from the floor the kids got distracted and excited. At the time, I was also studying to ‘BE’ a mindfulness teacher and completing a yoga teaching course, so despite feeling irritated,  I reminded myself to be present with the experience, have a 10431412_10152530791344789_4232260385897800258_obeginners mind with the visits and to see them through the children’s fresh curious eyes!

The children also used to love the large birds that perched on the telephone wires outside and sometimes we’d all just stand by the windows watching them. We’d find out what they were called, researching the photos in our small collection of bird spotting books and of course if the electricity and internet were working we’d use google.

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Lessons From the Ladybird

After the ladybird was set free,  I went back to class to tell my children about it and found out what they knew about them.  We looked at photos online of  different ladybirds, found out where they lived,  counted the different spots and introduced the word symmetry, little children love big words and there’s so many avenues still to explore. We added this learning to the slug, snails and power ranger interest zone.

Monkey Minds

Often I talk with the children about their busy monkey minds, and teach them ways to settle and calm ourselves, largely because I ‘need’ them to be quiet on the carpet.  Kids are naturally curious, playful and present, are we teaching them to be busy, distracted and stressed?

I Missed the Elephant

Whilst typing this I forgot to pay attention, the birds have been singing outside all the while and I didn’t notice –  I missed the elephant.

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Seize the day.

A PLAYce to BE

I’m facilitating a PLAYce to BE You on the 14th October at Clandon Wood near Guildford in Surrey. You might like to join in and notice the beautiful nature reserve with us. Why not come along and take a couple of hours out to just BE. Info here. 

If you would like me to come and talk to your organisation about simple ways to get present, please email me jane@janetyson.co.uk.

#frustrationexpert

What Will You Settle On Today?

What will you settle on today?

Some people love being preoccupied with thoughts.

Thoughts provide them with constant entertainment, interaction, they believe thinking is important.

They are addicted to distraction and fearful of boredom, inner silence, or feeling alone without them.

Our minds are often likened to busy monkeys leaping from tree to tree or butterflies fluttering from flower to flower.

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We are good at multitasking, reacting, and scanning for the pleasant, unpleasant or neutral and choosing all the time between them.

Life is fast paced, work is busy, families are doing, schools are cramming…

So what can we settle on today to stabilise our mind and respond more to situations?

How can we allow the butterfly to settle, the monkey to still?

Jane Tyson

Have Bag Will Pop Up or In!

Pop Up Talks for your Family, School, Business, Workplace.

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These flexible, fun and fairly priced 1.5 – 3 hour sessions include –
– What’s all the Stress About? – ways to teach each other to relax.
– Contented Parenting – a Behavioural Transformation model
– Mind Space in the Work Place – creating space to just BE?
– Yoga & Mindfulness –  how 5 minute movement breaks can create a calm and flexible school/family/workplace community
– Lessons From A Teenager –  lessons FROM teens – giving them a powerful voice
– How to Love What You Do
– Social Media – The Principles of Using Social Media Successfully – the importance of creating who you are, who your network is and understanding edge ranking.
– How to Grow Your Own Vegetables!
& more to suit you.
Why not get a group together and we will come to you?
Pick a day and time from these slots – Monday & Tuesday between 9.30am – 3.00pm,  Wednesdays 6.00pm to 10.00pm and Saturday afternoons 1.00pm – 5.00pm
We can also Pop In and offer one to one sessions for kids, parents, friends, business owners & colleagues.
Please see our meetup group for more scheduled workshops too.

Just Put Your Lips Together & Breathe

A Random Diablog.

Want to restore Calm, Balance, Energy, Creativity… try this it’s free

Long busy days, late nights, screens, after school clubs etc most kids it seems, are pretty busy and so are most adults.

A Pause in Your Day

When I’m teaching, I often have a slot where I encourage the class to have a pause in their day. They’ll sit up straight or stand, close their mouths, put their index finger near the tip of their nose, to help them focus, and breathe, as simple as that, just breathe. There’s always one or two who take big gulps of air, mess about and giggle but they soon get into it –  a nice, slow, easy, continuous deep breath in, and then out for a little longer.

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Restore Calm, Balance, Energy, Creativity

I explain that noticing their breath is a wonderful tool to use at any time of day, it can restore calm, balance, energy, creativity and give them a moment where they can chose to respond or react to a situation.

The Amyglada

I may even teach them about the ‘amyglada‘ in their brain and share a child-like story about a dog to help them to understand it, and why sometimes this area benefits from a little tlc.

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How can we introduce breathe work?

If you’d like to introduce this breathing idea to a child, pick a time when they are receptive, sometimes I find it easier to teach a class of 33 than my own children. If we are sitting together and connecting over a game, loom bands, lego or something peaceful, I might suggest it then.  The best thing we can do though is to model it ourselves to them.

Importantly, reflect on how you feel after a few of these breaths.

Join our Meet Up Group 

There are lots of ideas for how we can connect, communicate, stay calm and generally be more playful as a family,  which I’ll share at our next random meet up in  April.

In the meantime,  just put your lips together and breathe.

Jane x
Exploring Play
Random Dialogues

shake it up

‘They’ Made Me Do It.

A Random DiaBlog from a concerned Mum and Primary School Teacher.
My first Primary School teaching job was ten years after the introduction of the 1988 National Curriculum, which was about bearable.  I was an Art Coordinator; my lessons were as creative as possible, I had freedom, fun and autonomy to a point.  We made time for Golden Time and if there was Wet Play with board games, paper aeroplanes, Connect 4, craft, etc then the children were ecstatic.  A chance for them to just BE, share, collaborate and discover with their friends.

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Now, though, the intensity and control in schools is quite overwhelming and quite out of touch with 21st-century educational research and thinking.  While there is a big noise around the terms ‘mindfulness’ and ‘wellbeing’ I’m not seeing much evidence of it being practised or supported in schools.

My experiences and conversations with teachers reinforce that it’s constant lesson after lesson with little space and intense, time-wasting form filling in and marking.

The kids call me the yoga lady and I sneak in downtime: “Quick kids let’s just STOP and breathe for three breaths, and if you’re feeling rebellious you can close your eyes.”  We don’t need more mindfulness; we need to shake things up and encourage more playfulness.

In some schools I still see kids sitting in corridors missing entire playtimes for being ‘naughty’.

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Kids are playing up more I feel because they are so systemised and controlled.  From the age of 3, cameras are uploading photos of them to add to a personal statement, judgements made about their performance on tick sheets.  They are quite happy learning and playing,  put the clipboard away.  I was once advised by a forward thinking rebellious Headteacher, never to disturb a child when they were concentrating.

I see a few schools with outdoor learning provision for Year 1, but  it’s rare to see a dressing up box, role play area or golden time box valued after Year 2, ‘we haven’t got time.’ What do kids do when they go home, do they catch up on this lost play?

My son was in a detention a while back, and I remember asking his teacher if anyone had taken the time to listen to him and offer him some guidance and to think about how he might have handled it differently. The response was ‘oh we haven’t got time for all that’.   It’s often quite a  punishment escalation system – name on board, then missed playtime, loss of this, loss of that- constant carrot and stick intervention.

What no punishment? Why not create a meditation space –  a safe place, time out space for children to reflect and work things out if necessary with older kids or adults on hand to talk things over with and socially coach them with language, kindness, compassion, empathy, eye contact, sharing skills, manners, responsibility, self-control, etc.?

Why not trial a no rewards system? No stickers or house points or, ‘good boy’ remarks to work and behave well, no good or bad judgements, but instead foster a playful, self directed community where children are excited, engaged and intrinsically motivated to learn.

Playtime, Downtime, Be Time – it’s our kid’s natural state.  Kids waste a lot of time filling in their confusing and controlling Steps for Success forms and writing paragraphs using prefrontal adverbial prepositional lobotomy phrases, how about we give them back their playtime and mind space and treat them like the kids they are.

But it’s what we’ve always done. It can’t possibly change.  ‘They’ made me do it.

In my next blog, I will explain the simplest and quickest way we can help our children to find ‘space’ in these busy days.

There is always hope – a rebel alliance

Jane x
Exploring Play
Random Dialogues

shake it up