Reception: Brain Smart Start
How To Use Brain Smart Starts at Reception
The Conscious Discipline Brain Smart Start of the day consists of four activities: An activity to unite, an activity to connect, an activity to disengage stress and an activity to commit. Dr. Bailey designed this combination of activities using current brain research in order to promote an optimal learning state. Each classroom will conduct its own Brain Smart Start daily. Additionally, schools utilizing school-wide announcements will incorporate a Brain Smart Start into their regular announcement routine.
- The activity to unite as a School Family involves everyone doing something together. It builds connection, fosters a sense of safety and releases endorphins.
- The activity to disengage stress involves deep breathing and stretching. It prepares the brain for cortical learning and turns off the stress response.
- The activity to connect the students to the teacher and to each other helps to maintain focused attention and the motivation to learn. It also releases oxytocin, which promotes connection and reduces aggression.
- The activity to commit oneself to learning involves affirmations and positive thinking. It produces serotonin, teaches responsibility, promotes mindful attention and develops the prefrontal lobe.
Theses activities can be combined, for example, a School Family chant involving music and movement with a partner would both unite and connect.
Dr. Bailey discusses “Becoming Brain Smart” in Workshop 1 of the NEW 10-session online course, Conscious Discipline: Building Resilient Schools and Homes, Chapter 8 of the Creating the School Family book contains specific activities to facilitate the Brain Smart Start, and the “Brain Smart Start Chart” on the School Family Make-N-Take, available as digital downloads as part of our Premium Resource Toolkit, helps you to organize this structure. Several songs support the Brain Smart Start, including “Get Ready” and “Welcome” on It Starts in the Heart, “It’s Brain Smart Time” on Kindness Counts, and “Greetings” on Brain Boogie Boosters.
Video Examples: Brain Smart Starts at Reception
Younger Children: Brain Smart Start - School-wide Morning News
Younger Children: Brain Smart Start - Nancy with the News Leads the Whole School
Younger Children: Brain Smart Start - Schoolwide in Elementary
Younger Children: Brain Smart Start - Administrator doing Schoolwide Brain Smart Start
Older Children: Brain Smart Start - 4 Key Components
Older Children: Brain Smart Start - Nancy with the News Morning Broadcast
Photo Examples: Brain Smart Starts at Reception