Everyone Can Learn to Thrive

Bringing the science of attention, well-being, and resilience to the world’s educators, caregivers, and schools.

Learning to Thrive provides schools with the resources for outward change in their school culture through the inner change of their teachers, students, parents, and administrators.

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Move Beyond Just Surviving.

Learning to Thrive helps you build a program that empowers everyone in your community to not just survive, but actively thrive.

For many of us, health class was narrowly focused on minimizing risky behaviors and avoiding disease; being healthy meant getting by without any major health problems. Now, an increasing body of research points to the importance of also teaching practices that bolster positive physical, social, emotional wellbeing.

By cultivating specific habits of mind and body, we can do more than just “not get sick” or “not be stressed”; we can lead happier, more engaged, and more emotionally balanced lives and foster greater connections with ourselves, our neighbors, and our world.

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Change Starts with Teachers.

Learning to Thrive helps you to create a culture where personal development is professional development, so that the adults working with your students show up as healthy, whole, and resilient.

We would never expect a teacher who can’t read music to teach band, or a coach who has never played basketball to coach the varsity basketball team. But we often expect teachers who are stressed, anxious, or disconnected to teach SEL (social and emotional learning) to students. Only adults who incorporate wellness practices into their daily lives and embody self-care can successfully bring these practices to children.

When teachers learn and adopt these practices for themselves, not only does their personal wellbeing improve but so does their instruction1. We focus on empowering teachers with the necessary tools for emotional awareness and resilience so that they can teach their students those same skills from their lived experience and can model wholeness and wellbeing every time they show up in the classroom, even if they’re not teaching SEL or wellness.

1 Emerson et al (2017), Jennings et al (2011, 2013), Jennings & Greenberg (2009)

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The science is only helpful if you apply it.

Learning to Thrive delivers programming that emphasizes practical experiences that help create real, livable change.

Understanding the science of wellbeing only gets you so far. Reading about exercise is different from going to the gym; listening to a podcast on nutrition is different than changing your diet. Because wellbeing is a lived experience, our workshops are always based in actively trying new practices and learning to incorporate them in your life. (This is good, since there’s nothing worse than a faculty meeting or assembly where you’re forced to listen to one person talk at you the whole time!)

Incorporating small changes into regular routines (e.g. a minute of mindfulness at the start of each day, noticing what went well at the end of each day) can yield a big benefit over time--for individual teachers, students and families, and for the larger home or school culture.

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SEL is More Than a “Soft Skill”

Learning to Thrive’s programming helps to create a culture of connection, where both classroom instruction and student interactions are built on positive relationships.

Institutions that position SEL (Social & Emotional Learning) as secondary to academic learning miss the fact that it is precisely SEL skills that make students learning-ready. Without emotional regulation and balance, and without a sense of safety and connectedness, the very parts of our brain that allow us to access sustained attention, memory, and critical thinking are inhibited. So SEL is the most important skill we can provide students if we value their academic learning.

Students take teachers as much as they take classes, and SEL fosters the kinds of relationships that promote learning. To foster wellness in schools is to foster environments of deep learning and to foster the success of all members in the community.

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