Doug Worthen guided his small class of ninth graders at Middlesex School through an exercise designed to focus their attention. On his screen, he saw the students sitting outside or at desks and lounging across their beds as they joined their weekly mindfulness class online. One by one the students clicked off their cameras, each square became a white and gray icon and Worthen began the meditation.
“Notice where your attention is,” he said, prompting them to guide their attention back to their “home base” — the sounds around them or body sensations — when it drifted.
At the end of the meditation, the students were guided to open their eyes. They turned their screens back on and Worthen posed a question to the group. “I learned that my attention isn’t very stable,” a student said. She estimated that her attention was focused on her home base 14 percent of the time.
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