The Power of Pause: Student Support During Testing Season

Finding moments of calm or relaxation during testing season is a challenge every year, but as students return to standardized tests and high expectations this year – after academic, social, and emotional disruption – the stakes feel higher than ever. But we can use some of the practices we develop through social emotional learning to find moments of mindfulness, leveraging the Power of Pause to support students, educators, and families during a busy testing season.

What is The Power of Pause?

Move This World Founder & CEO Sara LaHayne explains, “The Power of Pause is about bringing the focus back to ourselves, to slow down and recognize that there’s a purpose and function for each inhale and exhale. We need to make space for them both, and we can’t do one without the other. We need to give ourselves time and space to reset, restore, and come back stronger.”

Within the Move This World curriculum, Power of Pause exercises provide educators with a dynamic, flexible library of content that they can use to support student during conflict, or transitions throughout the day, or whenever students need a moment to calm down – like during standardized testing and times of testing anxiety. We’re sharing 4 Power of Pause exercises below that you can use to bring a moment of pause, refocus, and calm to your classroom this spring.

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How Can Mindfulness Help With Test Anxiety?

Mindfulness helps to bring students and educators back to the present moment where they are able to become better connected with themselves, their thoughts and feelings, surroundings, and one another. Benefits of mindfulness include but are not limited to reduced stress, improved focus, less emotional reactivity, improved physical wellbeing, and even improved test scores.

Mindfulness incorporated into the school day, especially during exam time and the testing season, will help both students and staff to effectively identify and manage negative emotions and prevent unhealthy behaviors and coping mechanisms.

For Grades PreK-2: Air Heads

Students in Pre-K through 2nd grade are at a crucial developmental milestone. With their big imaginations, young students take naturally to our unique interactive videos. By inviting them to play, Move This World seamlessly introduces SEL concepts into their daily routine. In this sample video, students practice mindfulness and build resiliency by drawing shapes with their hands and celebrate messing up.

For Grades 3-5: Skywalkers

Students in late elementary grades are hitting their social stride and how they develop those skills can influence their academic success. They are still naturally inclined to play, but they’re also beginning to think about how other people perceive them. As students develop more meaningful relationships, they are curious to know what others think. Our social emotional skill development for late elementary school program helps students explore their place in the world with interactive videos made just for them. In this sample video, students practice mindfulness as they are guided through a calming meditation that sparks their imaginations.

For Grades 6-8: Wait for the 8

Students in middle school are changing drastically and developing rapidly. Students are becoming more aware of people outside their immediate circle, and beginning to understand that the world is a complicated place. Move This World’s social emotional skill development for middle school program recognizes students’ developing maturity and builds their SEL skills to navigate the complexities of life. In this sample video, students practice calming down with a breathing exercise that involves tracing a sideways 8 in the air.

For Grades 9-12: Fab Four

The transition from middle school to high school, and then from high school to the next journey, can be difficult to navigate. Students are making decisions, setting goals, and creating future plans that weigh heavily on their minds. Move This World provides one of the only social emotional skill development programs for high school students, which offers stability and guidance for students to carve their path with confidence. In this sample video, students practice mindfulness by thinking of a phrase to help navigate the challenges and stressors they are facing.

Don't let testing get you down

Mental health resources your students need

Find more mindfulness and SEL resources in our Mental Health Resources Toolkit, or learn more about SEL in Education.

The Nation’s Leading SEL Company

Move This World is the leading provider of social emotional learning (SEL) multimedia experiences for students, teachers, and families. Our SEL programs are customized for PreK-12 students and are delivered through short interactive lessons with the goal of empowering students to navigate the rapidly-changing realities of their world – both in the classroom and throughout their lives. The impactful yet simple Move This World SEL curriculum allows educators and families to incorporate Social Emotional Learning into their schedules every day, without planning or prep.

Contact us to learn more about SEL Grants and bringing Social Emotional Learning to your classroom.

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