I am Carmen Stewart. I have taught art in several DC schools but I have been with Lafayette Elementary School since 2017 as an early childhood teaching assistant. I have worked as a training specialist in the DC Government and was a Creative Director of Education journals and magazines for 24 years. I feel very fortunate to now be working in Early Childhood Education.
I thrive on creativity and the spontaneity of kindergarten. I love teaching Peace of Mind to the students because I feel that it helps to instill a kind and patient spirit early in life, as well as the ability to be able to calm themselves and others. Hopefully they will carry the principles of these lessons throughout their lives. This is especially important as we navigate through a world that seems dominated by technology and instant gratification and not a lot of emphasis on coping skills. I am happy to be part of the PEACE team at Lafayette, as well as the whole community. Thank you for inviting me.
Hello, My name is Marquita McBride. I’m an early childhood teacher assistant at Lafayette Elementary School. I’ve been in education for 22 years but working for DCPS for 6 years. I love being creative and shaping little minds in a meaningful way. Teaching PEACE has been an amazing experience for the children and myself. It makes my heart smile that they are so eager to learn meaningful ways to be kind, keep their bodies calm, and deal with their emotions. Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to be a part of this platform.
Jared is a 4th grade teacher in Frederick County Maryland Public Schools. He has be utilizing the Peace of Mind Curriculum in his classroom for nearly a decade and consistently sees positive results. He lives in Frederick, MD with his wife and their Bernese Mountain Dog, Coda.
Mindfulness Researcher, Teacher, and Consultant, Founder, Allighten LLC
Dr. Laura Feagans Gould is Founder and Chief Mindfulness Officer of Allighten, LLC where she helps individuals and organizations build their inner capacity for awareness, compassion, and inquiry as well as their outer capacity to assess and measure progress towards meaningful learning and growth. She has been studying and bringing mindfulness into communities and schools for almost two decades, serving as a co-investigator on several nationally funded grants and as the Director of Research for both Minds Incorporated and A Mindful Choice.
Laura’s research has focused on understanding the essential components of mindfulness-based programs in school settings as well as their potential impact on the development of youth outcomes. As a teacher, she is committed to introducing practices of kindness and presence for modern life in accessible and practical ways, with a touch of humor. She received her PhD in developmental psychology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and completed her postdoctoral training at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is currently in her second year of the Mindfulness Meditation Teacher Certification Program through The Awareness Training Institute and the Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Berkeley.
She has an affinity for bad puns (much to her kids’ chagrin), sloths, college sports, and collecting (but not always embodying) inspiring quotes and tidbits of wisdom. She lives in Northern Virginia with her most enlightening teachers: her incredible children and husband.
Educator Outreach, Training and Support
Kelly Gilstrap is a career educator with over 14 years of experience both teaching and serving as an instructional coach. As a mindful educator, Kelly believes in the power of school communities to develop student capacity to face challenges in their lives and the world with kindness, courage, and compassion. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s in Educational Administration. After recently teaching and coaching in Washington, DC, she now serves as a consultant with Peace of Mind, providing outreach, training and educator support. In this role, she develops and delivers training for those new to PoM and schools looking to strengthen their implementation model.
Kelly now resides in the sunny state of Georgia with her children and her husband Neil Gilstrap, Co-founder and CTO of Cadmore Media.
Thursday, October 20th, 4:15 to 5:45 pm EST
Peace of Mind‘s global community and the DC, Baltimore and Prince George’s County MD COSEM communities gathered for experiential learning and conversation about integrating mindfulness and circle practices. Skilled circle facilitators Robin McNair and Dave Trachtenberg helped us explore how the intersections of mindfulness and restorative justice can empower our students and re-connect educators with their purpose. We talked about how this powerful combination can support student well-being and help us create spaces of belonging for our students that embody social justice and equity.
Robin McNair, Restorative Practices Coordinator for Prince George’s County MD Schools and COSEM chapter leader for Prince George’s County MD
Dave Trachtenberg, Mindfulness facilitator and restorative justice educator at American University’s School of Health Studies, Washington D.C. and Peace of Mind Advisor
Mia Donovan, 5th grade educator, Mindful Teacher Foundation instructor, and COSEM chapter leader for Baltimore County, MD
Linda Ryden, Peace of Mind Founder, curriculum and storybook author, and full-time Peace Teacher in DC Public Schools
SERIES 2: Mondays/Tuesdays, 7 pm to 8:15 pm EST
Tue Jan 24, Mon Feb 6, Tue Mar 7, Tue Apr 11, Tue May 23, Tue Jun 6, Tue Aug 22
Would you like to learn tools to manage your own stress and anxiety? To help your students manage theirs? This workshop is for you.
Join us to develop your own mindfulness practice and prepare to teach mindfulness to your students. Taught by Meditation Teacher Chapin Springer and Peace of Mind curriculum authors.
This 7-session introductory course, taught by MMTCP-trained meditation teacher Chapin Springer, explores the fundamentals of mindfulness while offering meditation practices to help reconnect the mind, body, and heart in our everyday lives – and particularly in times of stress and uncertainty.
Peace of Mind curriculum authors will join at the beginning of each class to lead us in a mindfulness practice from The Peace of Mind Curriculum for PreK-8, modeling a practice you can share with your students. Chapin will then guide us in the adult version of the practice, offering context and insight into why and how we practice it for ourselves and teach it to our students.
This course is open to educators using The Peace of Mind Curriculum and educators seeking to learn more about the foundations of mindfulness and how to apply it in their teaching and in their daily lives.
This training is intended for educators, school staff, and teachers serving grades pre-K through Grade 8. Participants will receive 1 professional learning unit (PLU) for full participation.
For more information, please contact Jessica Dulay, school climate specialist, at .
Laura’s work is driven by a passion for educational equity and social justice. As a former actor, teacher, teacher educator, consultant and school administrator, she has worked to empower historically marginalized voices as well as challenge and change longstanding systems of oppression. As a certified leadership coach, it is her mission to empower leaders to create equitable and inspiring, diverse environments where all people thrive. Her clients include leaders in independent and public schools as well as in organizations such as the U.S. Naval Academy. As a consultant, Laura has worked with a range of organizations, including District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS), XQ America, Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE), the Stanford Center for Assessment, Learning and Equity (SCALE), Association of American Colleges of Teacher Education (AACTE) and Independent School Management (ISM).
Currently, Laura serves as Founder and C.E.O. of her equity-driven leadership coaching and educational consulting company, Radical Becoming, LLC. Her past experience includes serving as Assistant Head of School for Curriculum and Instruction and Principal of the Lower School at Georgetown Day School in Washington, D.C. She also taught in public and private schools in the D.C. metro area and southwestern Virginia. Laura earned her Ph.D. at the University of Maryland’s Department of Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership with particular focus in teacher education and professional development. She earned her M.Ed. in Special Education from The University of Virginia, an M.A.T. in Elementary Education at The American University and a B.A. at Middlebury College. Her research examines the role of diversity and equity in teachers’ vision and practice, enactment of culturally relevant thinking and practices, and the preparation of culturally relevant, equity-centered teachers.
Outside education, Dr. Yee’s passions include gardening, hiking and camping, woodworking, cooking, and spending time with her family, including three goofball children, their two adopted pitbulls and 11 egg-laying hens.
Syreetta McArthur has served communities in Washington, D.C. for fourteen years in several capacities. As an elementary and social justice educator, she recognizes the need to practice mindfulness as she centers equity in her teaching practice. Syreetta witnesses the positive impact Peace of Mind has on her students every day and recognizes the need for it in every level of education, in every school. Syreetta holds a Masters degree in Curriculum and Instruction for Social Justice from Loyola University Maryland. Syreetta is a lifelong learner that enjoys annotating articles and research papers. She is a proud plant mom and lover of a good writing pen.
Associate Vice President and Chief Benefits Officer, Georgetown University
Charles is Chief Benefits Officer and Associate Vice President for Benefits, Payroll and Wellness at Georgetown University. Through his leadership of the Office of Faculty and Staff Benefits, Payroll Services and GUWellness, he is creating a culture in which people want to work by providing the benefits and well-being programs that will attract and retain employees. He is committed to supporting the personal, professional and financial well-being of the University community. Charles’s passion for serving others manifests itself in the workplace through GUWellness, as well as in his service on boards of organizations that influence how we serve our community. Charles is particularly honored to currently serve on the TIAA Client Advisory Council and MetLife Client Advisory Board, and to have recently concluded his term on the regional American Heart Association Board.
Charles is heavily committed to giving back to the humanitarian sector through is work serving children and refugees in the greatest need worldwide. In 2008, Charles and a colleague from Georgetown University started an art education program called Art in Kibera at a school which serves AIDS-impacted orphans in the Kibera Slum of Nairobi, Kenya. In 2013, Charles created the Kibera Art Institute serving those – age 4 to 22 – in the Kibera community more broadly in creating art and finding a voice and identity through the visual arts. The Kibera Art Institute, through the Sanaa Foundation (founded by Charles), was granted Community Based Organization Status by the Republic of Kenya. In October 2018, after 10 years of providing art education in the Kibera slum, The Nairobi National Museum hosted a two-month long exhibit entitled The Art of the Smart, Beautiful and Important Children of Kibera.
Charles also serves as the president of the board of Nyumbani USA, serving children with HIV/AIDS in Kenya, and sits on the board of the School of Hope Foundation, serving the children in a school for AIDS affected orphans. In 2013, Charles became Chair of U.S. Association for UNHCR (UN refugee organization) and was tasked with reshaping this organization as one of the leading UNHCR refugee support organizations worldwide. Under Charles’s leadership, the organization grew from $3 million annually to $60 million. This happened through active leadership, hiring the right people and ensuring the organization’s mission was clearly articulated and widely communicated. Charles is currently Chair Emeritus of USA for UNHCR. In addition to his humanitarian work, Charles also sits of the board of The Washington Ballet, as it strives to fulfill its mission of excellence, diversity and community engagement as the ballet of the Nation’s Capital.
Charles lives in Chevy Chase, DC with his husband David and their four children, Lucas, Andrew, Jasmine and Lilly. He has published two books with New Academia Publishing; Smart, Beautiful and Important: teaching art to AIDS-affected orphans in Africa’s Largest slum and Lucas and Lilly go to Kindergarten.
Social Policy Researcher
Gloriela Iguina-Colón is a social policy researcher, dialogue facilitator, and mindfulness practitioner who is committed to co-creating spaces and policies that foster belonging and joy. Her engagements span across policy, spirituality, and interpersonal relationships, and she aims to bridge people across ideologies and identities.
As a researcher, she has co-led and co-designed evaluations of social service programs and provided strategic support to improve service delivery for low-income people. She has worked across multiple institutions, including public housing authorities, community colleges, financial counseling centers, and philanthropic organizations.
As a facilitator, she has developed and co-created more than a dozen dialogues and collaborative spaces for students, community members, and researchers to develop deeper self-awareness and move towards sustainable, structural change.
As a mindfulness practitioner, she has engaged in multiple trainings, dialogue spaces, meditation practices, and dharma talks (Buddhist teachings) and aims to live every moment present and compassionately.
Gloriela is a proud Nuyorican – Puerto Rican New Yorker – and is a continuation of her ancestors on the archipelago and in the diaspora who ceaselessly assert their right to joy, creativity, community, the land, and self-determination.
She is deeply grateful for her teachers for inspiring her and paving the path for a better world and planting seeds of compassion in her, including her mother, her aunt, her partner, her MDRC colleagues, Thich Nhat Hanh, Paulo Freire, mushim ikeda, john a. powell, the Program on Intergroup Relations at the University of Michigan team, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy team, and East Bay Meditation Center community. She graduated from the Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor.
For the past twenty years, Jordan Love has worked in independent schools in Washington, D.C., and Maryland as an early childhood educator and school leader. He is currently the Co-Head of Lower School at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School, guiding programming, curriculum implementation, and professional development in preschool through kindergarten. In 2017, St. Andrew’s Lower School adopted the Peace of Mind curriculum in all PK-Grade 2 homeroom classes, and the program has since become one of the cornerstones of the social-emotional curriculum in the division.
Jordan has also provided mentorship and guidance to aspiring school and teacher leaders as an Advisory Council member for AISGW’s Emerging Leaders Institute since 2015, and has presented recently at the annual NAIS Conference and MAESA Early Childhood Educators Conference. He received his Bachelor of Art in American Cultural Studies from Bates College and Master of Education with a focus in Teacher Leadership and Effective Teaching of Reading from Johns Hopkins University. Jordan believes strongly that school communities are at their best when the environment nurtures empathy and kindness, promotes collaboration and inclusiveness, and strives to create high-quality experiences anchored in Mind, Brain, and Education Science.
Why? Part of our nonprofit’s mission is to keep our resources accessible to all who need them. We don’t want price to be a barrier for you to attend. At the same time, we feel it’s important to offer honorariums to all of our presenters as part of our commitment to equity. Educators are already asked to do way too much for free. Conference fees make this possible.
The suggested donation is $35 per person. If you need to pay less, no problem. If you can pay more, you will be supporting those who need to pay less. Just choose your price when you check out. Thank you!
Hello! Thanks so much for your interest in purchasing Peace of Mind materials! Here is the information to help you complete your purchase order:
Send to: Cheryl Dodwell, Executive Director
Peace of Mind Inc
5540 Nevada Ave
Washington DC, 20015
Phone: (Cheryl’s direct line) 240 273 8084
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Jelena Popovic is a school psychologist by training, a wanderer by choice and peacebuilder by heart. She finds humility and mindfulness practices to be foundational building blocks in peace co-creation. Her passion is facilitating dialogs that are grounded in mindful awareness and empathy thus she spends most of her time in the circle with educators, parents, and students.
Independent Consultant, Early Childhood Programs and Educator Resource Development
After working with Peace of Mind to develop and author the Peace of Mind Core Curriculum for Early Childhood and offer related training, Jillian moved off of the Peace of Mind staff and transitioned into an independent consulting role in June 2019. In this role, Jillian advises and supports Peace of Mind in the areas of Early Childhood implementation and the development of resources for educators and parents.
Jillian is a dual-certified School Counselor and Special Education teacher who works with students at Lafayette Elementary School, a public school in Washington, DC. She teaches weekly Peace of Mind classes to all Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten students at Lafayette. She is a Licensed Professional Counselor in the District of Columbia, holds Masters’ degrees in Early Childhood Special Education from the George Washington University and in Marriage & Family Counseling from the University of Florida.
An avid traveler, Jillian previously lived abroad and speaks Spanish and Italian. She currently lives in Maryland with her husband and two rambunctious boys.
Dave Trachtenberg is a certified mindfulness teacher, circle-facilitator, and restorative justice educator who has dedicated his life to creating communities where people can authentically share, learn, and grow together. With 20 years of experience with mindfulness and mind-body practices, Dave is an outspoken champion for racial justice, gender equality, and LGBTQ & immigrant rights.
For five years Dave had the honor of serving as Program Director for MINDS, a nonprofit facilitating mindfulness programs to over 18,000 students, educators, parents in Washington DC. Currently he teaches mindfulness and restorative justice with American University, is a Guiding Teacher at Mindful Schools, Mindfulness First, and Millennium Forum, and is on the Advisory Board of Peace of Mind. For 11 years Dave has offered mindfulness classes & coaching through Walk the Middle Way, working with adults & teens in schools, organizations, and communities.
Dave has trained with The Engaged Mindfulness Institute, MBSR, Mindful Schools, Restorative Justice in Education, The Academy of Guided Imagery, Tai-Chi in the Cheng Man-Ching lineage, and is completing an M.S. in Positive Organization Development from Case Western Reserve University.
Assistant Principal (retired), Lafayette Elementary School
Jackie Snowden recently retired as Assistant Principal from Lafayette Elementary School, the largest elementary school in the District of Columbia Public School (DCPS) system with almost 800 students. Lafayette is a highly sought after elementary school which provides a special learning environment with talented, dedicated teachers and other staff members supported by a very active community body. Lafayette’s mission is to help students reach their full potential through creative, challenging, and fun learning experiences in a supportive, nurturing environment.
During Jackie’s tenure, Lafayette initiated and supported the first DCPS school-wide Peace and Mindfulness program to support a positive school culture. Jackie’s 30-year career at Lafayette also included teaching grades 2, 3, 5, and 6, as well as serving as the Arts Integration Coordinator when Lafayette was the only DCPS school to be designated as a Changing Education Through the Arts (CETA) school. In this capacity, she also helped to train teachers and administrators in other DCPS designated Arts Integration schools. To this day, an emphasis on integrating the arts into all subject areas enriches every student’s learning experience at Lafayette and beyond.
As a teacher, Jackie was nominated for the Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher Award. She holds degrees from American University and Cambridge College. She is a very proud native Washingtonian, and the even more proud mother of three adult children, all of whom are Lafayette graduates and owners of successful businesses. She has been blissfully married to her husband, Rene, for 40 years.
Avideh Shashaani is the founder and president of the Fund for the Future of our Children, established in 1993 focusing on youth leadership for peace. She is the 6th recipient of the “Waging Peace” award first given to George Clooney by President Jimmy Carter.
She was the first co-director of the International Institute for Rehabilitation in Developing Countries founded by the UN, UNESCO, and UNDP and was appointed by the UN Secretary General to the United Nations Expert Group Meeting on the “Socio-Economic Implication of Investments in Rehabilitation of the Disabled”.
She is the author of three books, Tell Me Where To Be Born, Promised Paradise and Remember Me. She is the editor of “Something Deeper Happened: Young Voices and the 2008 US Election” with a foreword by Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Her poetry and writings have appeared in books, anthologies, and journals. Her poems have been featured in a one-hour program in the Library of Congress radio series.
She served as Vice-President of the DC Public Library, board chair of Refugee Women in Development, founding chair of MOSAICA and has served on the board of the Faith & Politics Institute and the Thomas Merton Institute. She has a BA in Experimental Psychology and a Ph.D. in Sufi Studies.
Principal, Horace Mann Elementary School
Liz Whisnant has served as principal of the District of Columbia Public Schools’ Horace Mann ES since 2005. Horace Mann is only one of four schools in the nation to receive the US Department of Education Blue Ribbon School of Excellence Award five times. In 2008, Liz co-founded with several principal colleagues the District of Columbia Collaborative for Change (DC3), a reform structure for school improvement in DCPS whose mission is to craft schools that are inspiring places to teach and learn. She currently serves on several boards, including The National Network of Schools in Partnership, The Theatre Lab, and Peace of Mind.
Prior to Mann, Liz served as a school leader in Charlotte, NC and as a principal coach for the University of Washington’s Center for Educational Leadership in Seattle. She launched her education career as a classroom teacher in Boston, MA.
She holds degrees from Harvard University, Lesley University, the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, and Georgetown University. She is a proud mother, lucky spouse, and an enthusiastic cook.
Senior Communications Officer, U.S. Policy, Advocacy, and Communications
Chapin is a communications professional with more than a decade of experience leading strategic communications efforts, planning, and integrated campaigns for foundations, associations, Fortune 50 companies, and non-profits.
At the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Chapin drives communications strategies across the foundation’s early learning, K-12, and postsecondary strategies on the U.S. Policy, Advocacy, and Communications team. His specialties include editorial and strategic planning, integrated communications campaigns, leadership voice/speechwriting, and video production. He also manages a portfolio of media grantees and provides counsel and support to foundation partners.
Prior to joining the foundation, Chapin served as vice president at the communications firm GMMB, where he led client accounts across a range of sectors, including education, healthcare, and wireless technology. Before starting his career in communications, he was a soap opera and stage actor in New York City.
Chapin is a graduate of Syracuse University, a daily meditator, a grateful husband, and the proud father of two daughters currently benefiting from the Peace of Mind program at Lafayette Elementary School in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Elizabeth Hoffman is the Senior Scientific Program Manager for the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development (ABCD) Study at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The ABCD Study® is a large, prospective study of child health and development conducted at 21 sites across the U.S.
In 2014 Elizabeth returned to DC after living in Beijing for 6 years where she taught psychology to international high school students. Prior to moving to China, Elizabeth was an American Psychological Association Congressional Fellow in the U.S. Senate, taught neuroscience at Georgetown University, and conducted brain research at NIH for about 10 years. She received her Ph.D. in neuropsychology from The George Washington University and her B.A. in psychology and French from Brandeis University.
Elizabeth has a passion for communicating science to the public, especially students and educators, and regularly visits DC-area elementary and middle-school classrooms to engage in experiential learning about the brain.
Subrat Biswal was a researcher in the field of lasers and optics for over ten years. He has experience conducting theoretical, analytical, and experimental research at government laboratories (Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and the Naval Research Laboratory), academia, and the private sector. Subrat holds a BS from Johns Hopkins University and a MS and PhD from the University of Michigan in Electrical Engineering. His PhD advisor was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2018. Subrat’s research efforts have resulted in over 30 publications and 3 patents.
During the past decade, Subrat has been focused on his greatest and most rewarding challenge— raising his two spirited girls. Subrat has found mindfulness to be a vital tool in improving parenting. Wanting to spread these benefits to more families, Subrat has helped to bring mindfulness and SEL programming to Maury Elementary School on Capitol Hill. He also has volunteered as a tutor for children in math, reading, and STEM related activities. Subrat enjoys running, biking, hiking, and taking deep breaths with his globe-trotting wife, Nisha.
Cheryl works closely with Peace of Mind founder, Peace Teacher Linda Ryden, and the Peace of Mind Board to develop and share Peace of Mind’s program. Cheryl is the co-author of the Peace of Mind Core Curricula for Grades 1 through Middle School and editor of the Peace of Mind Core Curriculum for Early Childhood. She oversees training and support for educators and schools using the Peace of Mind Program, and manages resource development, school outreach, fundraising and operations.
Cheryl began her career at JP Morgan in corporate finance and private banking. After realizing her life’s purpose led in another direction, Cheryl left banking for a career in the nonprofit and wellness arenas, working for The Fresh Air Fund before earning her MBA with a focus in public and nonprofit management at Stanford University. She then served as the publisher of Who Cares: A Journal of Service and Action and helped to launch the Community Wealth Ventures program at Share Our Strength. From here she dove deeply into the holistic wellness field, becoming a licensed massage therapist working with children and families and gaining a deeper understanding of the importance of nourishing not only our minds but our bodies and spirits as well. Peace of Mind offers Cheryl an opportunity to integrate her many strands of experience to be of service in a new and fulfilling way.
A long time mindfulness practitioner, Cheryl brings a mindful, inclusive and peaceful approach to her work in all areas. Cheryl holds a BA in Economics and East Asian Studies from Princeton University. She lives in Maryland with her husband James and loves spending time with her two kind and inspiring grown-up children.
Founder, Teacher, Curriculum Author, Children’s Book Author, Advocate
Linda Ryden is the creator of the Peace of Mind Program and author of the Peace of Mind Curriculum Series, a cutting-edge combination of mindfulness-based social-emotional learning, conflict resolution and social justice for Early Childhood through Middle School. Linda has served as the full-time Peace Teacher at Lafayette Elementary School, Washington DC’s largest public elementary, since 2003 and continues to teach Peace of Mind classes to more than 700 students every week. Linda is also actively engaged in supporting her school’s efforts to sustain an inclusive and equitable school climate.
Linda is the author of six mindfulness-based children’s books, 3 of which are published by Tilbury House. Her work has been featured in The Washington Post, Washingtonian Magazine, Washington Parent, Washington Family, Teaching Tolerance, Edutopia, among others. Linda was a keynote speaker at the National Network of State Teachers of the Year conference in 2020 and a featured speaker at the National Education Association Foundation Symposium in 2018, and has received a Commendation for Educational Innovation from the DC Board of Education.
Linda brings a passion for teaching peace and over 30 years of teaching experience to her work with children and adults. Linda holds a BA from Wesleyan University. Linda lives in Washington D.C. with her husband Jeremiah Cohen, owner of Bullfrog Bagels, their two children, and their dog Phoebe.
Peace of Mind is a 501c3 nonprofit organization. We are passionate about supporting educators who are teaching mindfulness-based social and emotional learning to elementary and middle school students.
Peace of Mind grew out of the work of Linda Ryden, the Peace Teacher at Lafayette Elementary, the largest public elementary school in Washington, D.C.. In 2003, Linda began teaching a weekly conflict resolution class to Lafayette students. While her first through fifth graders seemed to be mastering conflict resolution techniques in class, there were still fights on the playground. Why? Linda’s inquiry led her to mindfulness and brain science.
Once she integrated these topics into her lessons, students were finally able to transfer their skills onto the playground! They became aware of and learned how to manage their feelings to resolve conflicts before they escalated. The culture of the school began to change and educators from other schools began to notice.
Peace of Mind Inc. was founded in 2014 and, after successfully piloting the curriculum in other schools, established as a nonprofit organization in 2018 to share the Peace of Mind Program more widely.
Peace of Mind is now taught by teachers, counselors, social workers and other dedicated educators nationwide, reaching an estimated 14,000 students every year. Thank you for your interest in joining the Peace of Mind Community! We’re glad you’re here.
SHARON SALZBERG, AUTHOR OF REAL HAPPINESS AND REAL LOVE, CALLS HENRY IS KIND “BRIGHT, FUN AND ENGAGING.”
– Review on MomReadit! – https://momreadit.wordpress.com/2018/10/29/henry-is-kind-encourages-acts-of-kindness/
“What did you like about the book?Mindfulness in the classroom is a growing trend, and Henry is Kind is a wonderful way to introduce the concept to lower-grade elementary students. Henry is listening to his teacher and classmates talk about all of the kind acts they have done, and he starts getting frustrated that he can’t think of a single nice thing he did. Luckily, his classmates are there to remind him that no small act goes unnoticed, and sometimes even the littlest moments make a big impact. At the end of the book, Ryden included a few pages on Mindfulness and Heartfulness. These pages have a plethora of information and resources for readers to incorporate the practices in their own lives. To whom would you recommend this book? Parents, Public and School libraries”
– Meghann Price, Lynn Vocational Technical Institute, Lynn, MA, Youth Services Book Review
“Linda Ryden is an amazing author, teacher and overall person. Her approach to mindfulness makes it achievable for all, and I consider her an expert in the field of social emotional learning and mindfulness. Her books serve as a wonderful resource for parents, teachers, and students.”
– Wanda H. Legrand, Ed.D Deputy Chancellor District of Columbia Public Schools
Written by Linda Ryden; illustrated by Shearry Malone. Published by Tilbury House Publishers. Copyright 2018, Peace of Mind Inc.
“This book is a wonderful tool to help children make the right choices in communicating with others. ”
Five Stars from Youth Services Book Review
Written by Linda Ryden; illustrated by Shearry Malone. Published by Tilbury House Publishers. Copyright 2019, Peace of Mind Inc.
“Provides readers with an easy-to-replicate method that will help them put bad days and experiences in perspective.” (Picture book. 5-10)
– Kirkus Reviews
“When a downcast Sergio gets home from a bad day at school, his wise mother listens sympathetically to his tale of woe and then suggests an experiment….”
– Goodreads (2019 Picture Books with POC Leads)
Written by Linda Ryden; illustrated by Shearry Malone. Published by Tilbury House Publishers. Copyright 2019, Peace of Mind Inc.
Learning about our brains and big emotions
Rosie has made plans with her friend, but she has forgotten that she has a piano lesson. She doesn’t want to go! Join Rosie as she learns what happens in her brain when she gets angry, and how she can use mindfulness to calm down and find a peaceful way to solve her problem. In this engaging and relatable story, children find out how their amygdala, hippocampus and prefrontal cortex work and learn about a tool they can use to manage big emotions.
Rosita ha hecho planes con su mejor amigo, pero se olvidó de que tenía una lección de piano. ¡Ella no quiere ir! Acompaña a Rosita para aprender lo que le pasa a su cerebro cuando se enfada, y cómo puede usar mindfulness para calmarse y encontrar una manera tranquila para resolver su problema. En esta historia atractiva y relatable, los niños descubren su trabajo sobre la amígdala, el hipocampo y la corteza prefrontal, y aprenden sobre una herramienta que pueden usar para manejar grandes emociones.
Written and illustrated by Linda Ryden. El Cerebro de Rosita translated by Lauren Beversdorf and edited by Patricia Frechin and Oscar Ebro-Nebot.
Rosie’s Brain Copyright 2016 Peace of Mind Inc. El Cerebro de Rosita copyright 2020 Peace of Mind Inc.
A Kids How-To Guide
“A brilliant book… An indispensable toolkit for every classroom and home.” – Jeff Warren, Author and Meditation Teacher
Marleigh is Mindful is a wonderful book…for children learning to cope with emotions.
— Sharon Salzberg, author of Lovingkindness and Real Change
Marleigh is Mindful is a fun guide for kids about how to use mindfulness to take care of big emotions. Through familiar scenarios, Marleigh and her friends share the mindfulness practices that help them when they feel worried mad, distracted, sad, really excited, lonely, happy, and concerned for the world around them. In relatable language, Marleigh and her friends teach the reader how they can use these practices too. Warm and engaging illustrations and practical guidance make this book a must have for helping kids navigate life’s challenges from disagreement with a sibling to concern for a stranger’s well-being. A must-have on every family bookshelf!
Written by Linda Ryden and illustrated by Linda Ryden and Gigi Gonyea. Published by Peace of Mind Press. Copyright 2021 Peace of Mind inc.