January 21, 2020

Dear Campus School Families,

I hope you and your children were able to find time over the holiday vacation to simply be and not do. By this I mean not feeling pressured to do something or go somewhere but to luxuriate in the moments at hand. In our frenetic world these moments appear less and less often and sometimes need to be manufactured, and a vacation affords us the opportunity to do so.

There is so much stimulation in our world that it can lead to emotional and cognitive overload, especially for children. When we combine that with the busyness that comes with modern life it is especially important to find the quiet “unproductive” time that gives children the space to be and breathe. Sometimes doing nothing is the most important thing we can do; the musician Brian Eno recognized this when he said “The difficulty of always feeling that you ought to be doing something is that you tend to undervalue the times when you’re apparently doing nothing, and those are very important times.” Consolidation of thoughts and feelings, creative incubation, and positive physiological outcomes can all occur when we are in this less active state.

We try to create these moments during our school day, knowing they are important parts of the mental and emotional health of children. I was in kindergarten recently and witnessed the students being invited to participate in a mindful moment, which the children eagerly embraced and clearly benefited from.

Slowing down, being without being busy, and quiet contemplation are all valuable and meaningful states in which to dwell,  and I believe many of us – and especially children – could benefit from more of these moments in our lives.