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What Is A Teacher Residency Program at HLF And How Does It Help The Instability Found In Underserved Schools?

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May 8, 2022
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HLF’s residency program entails HLF co-founders Ali Smith, Atman Smith, and Andres Gonzalez spending one week facilitating yoga and mindfulness based programs at a school working with all of the students and staff for that week.

What Is The HLF Teacher Residency Model?

This program was piloted at Lincoln Elementary School in Madison, Wisconsin. During that week, HLF taught yoga and mindfulness classes to over 400 students and 30 staff daily, in large and small group settings.

The principal identified a group of her most hard-to-reach and at-risk students for a daily intensive small group session.

HLF used their reciprocal teaching model so that at the end of the week the students were able to lead their classes through stretches, breathing exercises, centering exercises, and meditations.

Teacher Residency Programs Help Underserved Communities And Provide Real World Training To Resident

Through augmented training and greater incentives, teacher residency programs seek to help areas of recruiting, training, and retention challenges understaffed, for inner-city or underserved schools.

Teacher residents teach in an underserved school, both during their residency and for their subsequent commitment period. They serve students most in need of skilled, committed teachers.

HLF left teachers with prompt cards to aid students in leading the classes through exercises. HLF’s residency program at the Lincoln School was visited by the Superintendent of Madison County Schools, members of the Madison County school board, staff from the Center for Investigating Healthy Minds, and The University of Wisconsin Cooperative Extension, who all gave it great reviews.

What Do Our Residency Classes Look Like?

HLF instructors have been teaching yoga and mindfulness for over a decade.

We began by teaching at-risk youth in Baltimore’s underserved communities and have since expanded to teach private and group classes and workshops for students of all ages, demographics, and levels of experience.

We have taught in a variety of locations including private, physical therapy yoga classes at the Baltimore Center for Wellness and classes at drug treatment centers to help with addiction.

Many colleges, government agencies, yoga studios, and corporations have benefited from their vast array of classes.

As such, we teach our own unique style that blends several forms of yoga, mindfulness practices, Tai-Chi, and other self-healing arts.

The Holistic Life Foundation has a very long track record of happy, healthy, stress-free, relaxed, and peaceful students.  Additionally, HLF facilitates workshops in many formats including one-time workshops and workshop series.

Workshops include yoga and mindfulness practices, holistic health, Tai-Chi, games, discussions, role play, interactive activities, lectures, as well as holistic solutions for your problems.

What Are The Greater Benefits Of A Teacher Residency Program

Residents benefit from mentorship, coaching, and a robust support network that extends from their embedded classroom to their master’s degree program. Mentors, faculty, staff, and peers all contribute to encouraging, sustaining work and learning environments.

Over one year after HLF’s residency program at Lincoln, the students are still leading their classes through yoga and mindfulness techniques they were taught. Teachers have also had students self-report practicing the techniques at home and teaching family members as well.

Ultimately, that experience helps attenuate teachers to the specific needs of their students.

Suffice it to say, teacher residency programs help give birth to more  effective teachers.

HLF’s calendar is filling up quickly; contact them now to book this amazing program at your school.



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