Math teacher introduces Mindfulness Mondays


Meditating, Pxhere, Creative Commons

Math teacher Ms. Monica Weir sees mindfulness as a way to cope with stress, and this year she is bring her knowledge to her students.

In the midst of the chaos that is 2020, BSM math teacher Ms. Monica Weir has released a program to help relieve stress.

This school year, Weir noticed that there were many factors increasing stress for both the students and staff at BSM. To help them cope with the stress of the tense political climate, the division in the country, the Covid-19 pandemic, and the social justice issues facing our society, Weir started the ten-week Mindfulness Monday program. “People are trying to figure out how to navigate their stresses…mindfulness is not a cure, but it’s definitely a strategy,” Weir said

Each Monday, she sends an email to the faculty and staff at BSM, complete with a video created by Weir, inspiration messages with a voice-over, and a written explanation of the practice. So far, the program has covered focusing on breathing, a full-body scan, and gratitude journaling. These practices can help students and staff focus on their feelings and finding their place during this chaos. “This is my attempt at trying to provide people with a strategy [to] figure out ‘how I feel and how I figure out my place among everything that’s going on,’” Weir said.

Weir has been practicing mindfulness for a few years, and she felt compelled to share what she learned with the BSM community. She researched the important outcomes of mindfulness, such as training her brain to focus on the positive, pause, and respond to surroundings more efficiently. “You can train your brain, ” Weir said

Mindfulness is not a cure, but it’s definitely a strategy.”

— Ms. Monica Weir

Weir hopes that her program will help others accomplish these goals and inspire them to continue practicing mindfulness. To get the most out of the program, Weir reminds her students and fellow staff members to be willing to try. “Just be open-minded,” Weir said.

Each Monday, Weir takes time out of her various math classes to lead students through her mindfulness exercises. Students use this time to slow down and reflect on their feelings and stress levels. “They’re a good break from the normal schedule,” sophomore Ella Kocourek said.

Weir is excited about continuing with her ten-week program, and she plans on leading her second quarter classes through the same program after the first ten weeks is over.