Item ID : 4009

The Hawn Foundation’s MindUP program

Item ID : 4009

Retrieved mostly from and from a number of publications as indicated.

MindUP is an initiative of the Hawn Foundation established by world renowned actress Goldie Hawn in 2005. The rationale of the program is based on “mind-heart education” more familiarly known as Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) associated here with Daniel Goleman’s “Emotional Intelligence” and Martin Seligman’s “Positive Psychology”. The mission is stated in diverse ways on the Hawn Foundation’s website: “to develop and deliver social and emotional learning, supported by brain research that nurtures children and ensures their future and ours.”  “to help young minds by nurturing resilience, hope, and optimism”,” to help transform children’s lives by providing them with opportunities to acquire vital social and emotional skills, to improve academic performance, enhance the quality of their lives, and to help them feel more connected to their communities.”

MindUP is the flag program of the foundation. It includes: a collection of social, emotional, and attention enhancing self-regulatory skills and strategies developed for cultivating wellbeing, emotional balance, and resiliency. The MindUP program offers different curriculum models for pre-K to 2nd grade, 3rd-5th, 6th-8th. These have been implemented in classrooms by over 1000 educators through North America. The program is designed to fit into classroom routine. It consists of 15 lessons divided in four units progressing from self-awareness to involvement in community as follows (retrieved directly from the website):

  1. Let’s Get Focused! (1. Learning How Our Brains Work; 2. Understanding Mindful Attention; 3. Focusing Our Awareness: The Core Practice)
  2. Paying Attention to Our Senses (4. Mindful Listening; 5. Mindful Seeing; 6. Mindful Smelling; 7. Mindful Tasting; 8. Mindful Movement I; 9. Mindful Movement II)
  3. It’s All About Attitude (10. Perspective Taking; 11. Choosing Optimism; 12. Savoring Happy Experiences)
  4. Taking Action Mindfully (13. Acting with Gratitude; 14. Performing Acts of Kindness; 15. Taking Mindful Action in Our Community)

“Curriculum Connections” are offered as short activities that integrate lesson plans with the principles and concepts of MindUP lessons.

The program helps:

  • Reduce stress and anxiety;
  • Improve concentration and academic performance;
  • Understand the brain science linking emotions, thoughts, and behaviors;
  • Manage emotions and behavior more effectively;
  • Develop greater empathy for others and the world;
  • Be optimistic and happy.
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