The Sentinel: Educators say APS mental health infusion bringing a wealth of benefits

Children reach to the sky, for a yoga pose, in a first grade class at Elkhart Elementary, Sept. 20, 2019. APS is spending tax revenue on student mental health support. Photo by Philp B. Poston/Sentinel Colorado

Story excerpt:

"The clear sound of a bell rang through Bobbie Kuminka’s fifth-grade class at Elkhart Elementary School. The twenty-some students sat in silence, heads down on their desks, with eyes closed. The bell’s note hung in the air and slowly slipped away.

'You should just be listening to your own breath,' Kuminka told them.

The peaceful exercise was meant to facilitate 'mindfulness' – reflection or contemplation – in the crop of young students.

They were quiet Friday as Kuminka led them through other mindfulness exercises. Once again, they rested their heads on desks and closed their eyes, this time raising their arms in response to basic questions. How were they feeling that day? Were they exhausted, stressed out, focused, anxious?

Mindfulness routines are familiar to many Elkhart students."