“Pay Attention!”: A Curriculum Unit on Mindful Awareness in the 3-5 Classroom

Jordan Barnhill, 4th Grade, Oakhurst Steam Academy

Curriculum Unit (PDF)


In this curriculum unit, students will participate in a problem-based learning project that focuses on helping an inattentive, struggling class. Before presenting solutions to this problem, students will learn key components that promote positive mental health and well-being, with the goal of improving attention. Students will learn about the field of neuroscience to better understand the function of the brain and nervous system. In addition, they will learn about the concept of neuroplasticity and how their brain regulates emotions. Students also will learn about mindful awareness, or the intentional non-judgmental awareness of the present moment. They will learn and practice mindful awareness (mindful breathing, mindful seeing, and mindful listening) to develop focused attention, emotional balance, and well-being. To gauge levels of understanding of the content, students will create presentations demonstrating learned mindfulness strategies and exercises to the inattentive, struggling class. In addition, students will complete a post mindfulness self-assessment that will be used to gauge their current application levels of mindful awareness. This data should be compared to data collected at the beginning of the unit to gauge student learning.