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Youth and Family Mindfulness Programs

Art created by teens in our program

Art created by one of our teen program participants.

Our vision is to encourage young people to explore and deepen an awareness of self through mindfulness training. We teach a curriculum that is designed to support social and emotional learning and cultivate awareness of stress reactivity in children and adolescents. Mindfulness-based practices inspire discernment in decision-making and lead to healthier and happier choices. These experiential programs offer youth, and the families who care for them, an opportunity to discover their capacity for a deeper purpose and more meaningful connection to themselves and the world around them.

~ Mindfulness is the new ABCs of education: Attention, Balance and Concentration
~ Susan Kaiser-Greenland

The Center’s Youth and Family Mindfulness Programs Include

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Making Friends with Yourself: A Mindful Self-Compassion Program for Teens

Adolescence is a time of change and growth. It is the period of life reserved for rebellion and self-discovery, but as the demands in life increase for teens, this time is often fraught with confusion, anxiety or depression. For many teens these challenges lead to disconnection and isolation. This course in Mindful Self-Compassion is designed to facilitate awareness, self-kindness and stronger connections in response to these growing challenges. Through developmentally appropriate activities and carefully crafted practices and meditations, teens have an opportunity to learn how to navigate the emotional ups and downs of life with greater ease. This course creates an opportunity for adolescents to construct a healthier and more equitable world-view and gives rise to greater compassion and empathy toward self and others. In a preliminary research study, this program demonstrated a significant decrease in depression, anxiety, perceived stress and negative mood. This curriculum was adapted from the adult model of Mindful Self-Compassion created by Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer.

Registration Fee: $295 for an 8-week course

Program Schedule and Registration

Mindful Education

A Mindful Education curriculum designed for the classroom. These programs, offered to elementary, middle and high school students, use age-appropriate training materials and practices that inspire exploration and curiosity. The result is higher levels of concentration, organization, and the ability to attend to problems with greater patience and empathy. In some cases, it may be appropriate (and preferable) to train classroom teachers in the methods and practices of mindfulness to facilitate implementation of the curriculum.

Mindful Teen & Pre-Teen Programs

A Mindful Teen & Pre-Teen Programs. Held on the premises of the UCSD Center for Mindfulness, these two weekly programs are designed for kids aged 12-18 and 8-13, respectively. The Mindful Teen & Pre-Teen programs utilize a combination of age-appropriate exercises, that include yoga, art, meditation practices and multimedia to encourage insight, self-awareness and strengthen the capacity for self-regulation. Neuroscience research provides strong evidence that these mindfulness practices can alter the structure and function of the brain to improve quality of life.

Mindful Parenting Program

A Mindful Parenting program. 8-week program for parents who are interested in learning Mindfulness practices, to help them navigate the parenting process and deepen their connection to their family. Through these workshops, parents will be exposed to methods of problem solving and communicating that help build emotional resilience in their children.

School In-Service Training

Two-hour In-Service Training, one-day workshops and 8-week programs in mindfulness training designed to create a sustainable model of mindfulness in the schools. Evidence based research demonstrates the value and benefits of mindfulness in promoting greater concentration, emotional regulation and focused attention in the classroom.

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities; in the expert’s mind there are few” ~ Jon Kabat-Zinn



Center for Mindfulness
UC San Diego Center for Integrative Medicine and Department of Psychiatry
5060 Shoreham Place, Suite 330
San Diego, CA 92122-0980
858-334-4631
Fax: 858-334-4601
mindfulness@ucsd.edu