In addition to our students’ practice of Transcendental Meditation, we have a unique course that distinguishes our Consciousness-Based Education approach.
It’s called Consciousness, Connections, and Life Skills. As the title implies, the course has three interrelated aspects:
1) Consciousness: deepening students’ understanding and experience of consciousness
Topics: practice of Transcendental Mediation, yoga, pranayama (breathing technique), advanced TM techniques, brain coherence, theories of human development and higher states of consciousness, collective consciousness, and research on consciousness.
2) Connections: exploring underlying, universal principles and qualities that are common to the structure and functioning of all aspects of life—their academic subjects, in nature, and in themselves
Topics: 16 Life Principles, 50 Qualities and 16 Values of Creative Intelligence.
For example, we see how “Life is found in layers”: whether in the earth’s crust, our government, the analysis of literature, a math theorem, or one’s family and personality.
This is one way Maharishi School cultivates both horizontal and vertical thinking: making connections between all the details on the surface of life and with the big ideas at their basis.
3) Life Skills: developing social-emotional awareness and skills as a foundation for their personal and academic growth.
Topics: Social-Emotional Learning (SEL), Comprehensive Health, Positive Discipline and Restorative Justice
Social and Emotional Learning curriculum in our Upper School consists of 5 main competencies as formulated by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL):
- Self-Awareness: the ability to accurately recognize one’s own emotions, thoughts, and values and how they influence behavior.
- Self-Management: the ability to successfully regulate one’s emotions, thoughts, and behaviors in different situations.
- Social Awareness: the ability to take the perspective of and empathize with others, including those from diverse backgrounds and cultures.
- Relationship Skills: the ability to establish and maintain healthy and rewarding relationships with diverse individuals and groups.
- Responsible Decision-Making: the ability to make constructive choices about personal behavior and social interactions.
Comprehensive Health curriculum: We use the K-12 curriculum from Advocates for Youth called Rights, Respect, and Responsibility. This curriculum includes age-appropriate lessons that cover a wide range of health areas, including relationships and consent, STDs and contraception, dating abuse, etc.
Positive Discipline is designed to teach young people to become responsible, respectful, and resourceful members of their communities. Our overall goal for positive discipline is to culture mutual respect between peers and adults, and to make sure all children are heard, respected, and intrinsically motivated.
- In Middle School, communication skills and conflict resolution are the main focus.
- In the Upper School, many aspects of Positive Discipline (such as effective communication and problem-solving skills) are covered in the SEL curriculum and practiced in the classroom. The upper school also utilizes Restorative Justice talking circles and practices, which are much in line with Positive Discipline.
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