Moshi for Schools: Mindfulness in the Classroom Case Study
Name: Shawnda Fukano
School: Mount View Elementary School, Highline Public Schools
City, State: Seattle, WA
Focus: Primary Instructional Specialist; Orange County Department of Education – Guided Language Acquisition Design Trainer
Shawnda Fukano works with primary grades as an instructional specialist and is also a parent from Seattle, WA. She first discovered Moshi when other moms recommended it for use at home with kids at bedtime. This is when she discovered that Moshi has a school component and thought “Of course, why didn’t I think of that!”. We are delighted that Shawnda offered to share her experience with using Moshi for Schools in her work with first and second-grade students. These are things she tried out in different classrooms during the past year.
What issues were you facing that you felt Moshi for schools could help you deal with?
I was teaching online – distance learning – last year and Moshi helped me solve two different issues. The first was that I had much less live time with my students than I would normally, so I needed to integrate content as much as possible. Our school is a dual-language school, so content integration and thematic teaching are the norms. A second issue was that my first and second graders needed a lot of brain breaks during our Zoom classtime. Moshi helped me solve those problems by making brain breaks a meaningful part of my teaching. Instead of this just being just a break time, it was teaching time – such as noticing what their bodies and brains needed for that break.
How has Moshi for schools helped you in your classroom?
I am an instructional coach, so I work with multiple classrooms but do not have a class of my own. This past year I worked closely with seven 1st and 2nd grade classrooms. I have used Moshi in several ways in these classrooms.
Moshi Music has helped me in the classroom to provide a positive learning environment for my students. The peaceful music provides my students with a calm environment as they work independently and a gentle reminder to keep their voices low so as not to interrupt their classmates. In our virtual classroom, having music playing for students during independent work time helped to remind them that they were still in class, even though they were working on their own and not necessarily looking at the screen.
Moshi Moments have greatly expanded my resources for brain breaks – brain “boosts” as my school likes to call them. I found that these short clips provided a perfect amount of time for students to relax and reset in a calm way. They would close their eyes or turn away from their device (giving them a break from looking at the screen) and listen to the moment. I especially appreciate that I can choose from a variety of topics/emotions to target based on the mood and needs of my students, and thus integrate SEL (Social-Emotional Learning) instruction into our break time. This allows me to maximize instruction time, which was shorter than usual during distance learning.
Moshi Meditations are very useful for specific SEL instruction time and class meetings when I have a longer chunk of time to explicitly teach SEL topics and strategies. As a specialist, I don’t teach these parts of the day as often and therefore haven’t had as much experience using Moshi in this way. However, I have read through some of the SEL lesson plans on the Moshi for Schools website and find them to be useful and, most important, simple to read and user-friendly. It’s awesome that they are aligned to SEL and academic standards! As a parent, my son uses Moshi Meditations and Moments to get into the right frame of mind before starting on school work and projects that require more focus or that he knows will be challenging.
Do you have any suggestions and/or recommendations for using Moshi for Schools?
My suggestion to other teachers is to start small — try using one thing (music, moments, etc.) in your class, and that will naturally expand to using other Moshi resources. The online platform and app are both super easy to use. It’s not another digital tool that is overwhelming or complicated.