The following post was written by Anna Clark, Corporate Marketing Coordinator.
Heading back to school can be daunting: a new teacher, a new classroom, new friends, and new things to learn await our students as they return each year. However, many children can experience heightened levels of stress and frustration as this time of adjustment takes place.
Thankfully, we have our very own mindfulness mentor, Stillwater, to give us some inspiring, creative tactics on how to return to school with a calm outlook.
Many of us – whether at school or in the classroom – know what it means to be creative. Painting, coloring,scrapbooking, and collaging can all be ways that we express ourselves. Using art as a form of expression can help relax our bodies and relieve our mind of stressors.
When Stillwater invites Addy to paint a still life with him from a bowl of fruit, the activity sounds like a stress-free activity to relax the mind. However, when Karl begins to play in the yard, knocking over the fruit, Addy becomes discouraged. How can she complete her still life, while nothing around her stays still?
Addy soon learns from the help of Stillwater that art is all about the unexpected. It is impossible to control every surrounding that circles us, no matter how overwhelming. Instead, Stillwater suggests that Addy paints everything she can see, feel, and hear. Addy soon realizes that letting go of expectations can lead to the sweetest rewards.
When we create, we cannot always control our surroundings, but we can keep our mind motivated when in the process of creating. Art can help to calm us when we are feeling overwhelmed, anxious, or fearful.
To learn more about how art can be an accessible source of practicing mindfulness, read “Healing Through Art,” where Dr. Louvenia Jackson talks to Scholastic Magazines+ about her job as an art therapist.
As students head back to school, we can all learn from Addy’s example. While the classroom may be chaotic, we can breathe and immerse ourselves in our work, no matter our surroundings.
Art is an individual creative process. While we may feel uninspired or inadequate of our abilities, we can embrace that everyone is qualified to create, starting with ourselves.
Interested in seeing Stillwater and Addy’s painting? Watch what unfolds and learn more about mindfulness in the process, by checking out new episodes of Stillwater out now on Apple TV+.
Need more Stillwater? Sit back, take a deep breath, and take a mindful moment with these Stillwater Shorts:
For more back to school resources for kids and families, click here.