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DeStress Monday in Baltimore Public Schools

Johns Hopkins University has teamed up with The Monday Campaigns to develop DeStress Monday in Schools, focused on teachers and students.

Dr. Tamar Mendelson from the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health and Dr. Erica Sibinga from the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine have collaborated with the Monday Campaigns to pilot DeStress Monday at School, a program that brings mindfulness instruction to teachers and students in Baltimore Public Schools.

The Monday Campaigns is a movement based on the idea that Mondays provide moments when one can reflect on the previous week and cultivate a positive attitude for the week ahead. DeStress Monday at School is an initiative specifically tailored toward the classroom, bringing in activities, audio files, and videos for the school environment.

In an effort to support teachers and address unmet emotional and behavioral needs in the classroom, the program sends weekly mindfulness resources to teachers, who then implement mindfulness-based activities in their classroom throughout the week.

The teachers’ program includes five themes that teachers identified as important prior to the study: Starting the Day, Boosting Energy, Improving Focus, Calming the Mind, and Connecting. Students and teachers can all benefit from deep breathing, yoga, intention-setting, mindful listening, and a variety of other exercises included in the program.

Surveys before and after the 9-week pilot program indicated improvements in stress, anxiety symptoms, and sleep for teachers who participated in DeStress Monday at School. Moving forward, the study will continue with a control group, allowing researchers to better evaluate the effects of the program on teachers’ perceived stress, coping skills, sleep, depression, and anxiety symptoms.


As you watch, consider the following, post your response below, and reply to comments of other learners:

How else could the program managers and researchers have learned about the needs of their target population (the teachers)?

Provide some suggestions for alternative strategies for conducting a needs assessment for this project.

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The Monday Campaigns: Lessons in Public Health Promotion

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