Building Skills and Mindful Learning

Mount Madonna School sixth and seventh grade students recently constructed 14 meditation benches to be used as part of the middle school yoga program.

Meditation benches are used to assist with kneeling, making sitting in an alert position for meditation more comfortable. To complete this work, the students learned basic carpentry skills and worked with reclaimed wood to craft each bench. Students sanded and prepared each piece, and marked and measured the pieces for drilling and assembly. They pre-drilled holes with a power tool and fastened with wood screws. Every bench is slightly unique, and students were encouraged to use stencils and stamps to paint the benches and add a personal, artistic touch.

Katrina Leni-Konig, part of the middle school yoga teaching team, worked with the students during their Life Skills course.

“It was the perfect opportunity to make these benches for our yoga program, said Leni-Konig. “I believe that middle school is an excellent time to teach students how to use tools to create something useful. You wouldn’t believe how these carpentry projects engage the students in the work at hand. In addition to practical skills, they practice mindfulness, cooperation, problem solving, and build confidence in their abilities.”

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Contact: Leigh Ann Clifton, director of marketing & communications, [email protected]

Nestled among the redwoods on 355 mountaintop acres, Mount Madonna is a safe and nurturing college-preparatory school that supports students in becoming caring, self-aware and articulate critical thinkers, who are prepared to meet challenges with perseverance, creativity and integrity. The CAIS and WASC accredited program emphasizes academic excellence, creative self-expression and positive character development. Located on Summit Road between Gilroy and Watsonville.