Wellness succeeds in relieving stressed minds

Chloe Kennedy, Staff Writer

Deep within the basement hallways of BSM, room 27 houses an aura of centering and relaxation as students sprawl across the floor on mats and blankets during their Wellness meditation class. As an hour of release from stress and providing strict concentration on the health of body, mind, and spirit, Wellness classes have proved to be a revolutionary addition to the BSM curriculum.

When Ms. Connie Fourre began her work as Wellness Director two years ago and started BSM’s Wellness program, she never imagined it would turn into the success it is today. “[The program is] better than what I originally envisioned. I never thought there would be all these activities, no BSM hour for a break,” said Ms.Fourre.

Ms. Fourre started out with simple expectations for the wellness program. “I was just seeing the level of stress kids are experiencing as a theology teacher. I wanted to help integrate the theology part with the rest of [our lives],” said Ms. Fourre.

The wellness hour began to take form in the spring of 2010. “It was just six Fridays a semester and we were doing more traditional wellness activities such as cooking or casual games. We even tried to take the kids to the park for recess,” said Fourre.

Although wellness hour was first met with confusion and dislike, it seems as though opponents have started to come around. “The program this year is doing really well…from what I hear from students [they really like it], and parents agree, even the ones who were skeptical,” said Ms. Fourre.

One of the many logistics that goes into a successful Wellness program is getting 700 students into the classes they asked for. Also, PowerSchool doesn’t support classes that last a quarter, requiring deans to use an entirely different system to sign students up for their wellness calsses. “Ms. Rasmussen has been heroic. With the help of the other deans, she has taken at least 40 hours in the last ten days to put the schedule together. It couldn’t happen without her,” said Ms. Fourre.

Ms. Fourre considers the program a success, especially when put into the prospective of the students. “I’m seeing kids knitting in the library and during their classes, telling me that it calms them down. That is exactly what I wanted to see from the Wellness program. I didn’t think they would take it home or even out of the room,” said Ms.Fourre.

One of Ms. Fourre’s favorite parts of the Wellness hour is that it is designed by students and based off student suggestions. “This all happened because kids asked for it. They asked for biking, asked for nets and rackets, asked for knitting. It’s one of those things that we get to design ourselves,”said Fourre.

Because of these student suggestions, Ms. Fourre considers adding kickboxing on to one of the existing classes. She encourages further suggestions, hoping that the hear of the BSM wellness will stem from student desires and participation.

Please contact Ms.Fourre in room 27 with any suggestions regarding wellness opportunities or classes.