Yoga 4 Classrooms®

Tools for learning. Lessons for life.

Who We Are

In 2007, while volunteering to teach yoga in a local elementary school, Lisa Flynn was inspired and challenged by the classroom teachers she encountered to create a yoga and mindfulness-based program focused on the whole child that would also be appropriate for the classroom setting. After three and a half years of research, development and test piloting, Yoga 4 Classrooms was born. Yoga 4 Classrooms has grown rapidly with hundreds of public as well as school in-service workshops being held in communities and schools across the U.S., as well as online. And, the popular Yoga 4 Classrooms Activity Card Deck is successfully used in schools, homes and therapeutic settings worldwide. As the model continues to evolve, school teams are now empowered to lead school wide program integration through the IMPLEMENT Leadership Training which was developed to help ensure customized and sustainable implementation in schools. By providing training and resources to support sustainable, school wide implementation, we empower schools to meet improvement goals while preparing students for a lifetime of success.

 

Lisa Flynn, Founder & CEO

Lisa Flynn is founder of ChildLight Yoga and its affiliate Yoga 4 Classrooms, national organizations providing evidence and trauma-informed yoga and mindfulness education for children and professional development training, curricula, products and support for thousands of educators, counselors, allied health professionals, parents, kids’ yoga teachers and others who support the social, emotional, cognitive and physical well-being of children, youth and families. Lisa is author of the Yoga 4 Classrooms Activity Card Deck (2011); Yoga for Children: 200+ Yoga Poses, Breathing Exercises and Meditations for Healthier, Happier, More Resilient Children (2013); and the newly released Yoga for Children—Yoga Cards: 50+ Yoga and Mindfulness Activities for Kids (2018); contributor to Best Practices for Yoga in Schools; and sponsor of the Research Repository: Yoga, Meditation and Mindfulness for Children, Adolescents and in Schools, a free resource for schools, program providers, researchers and others interested in the growing body of evidence supporting mindful practices in schools. She contributed to the first published research study to use subjective and objective data to examine the acute and longitudinal effects of a school-based yoga intervention.

Lisa's work has been featured on Fox News as well as in Education Week, Forbes, Yoga Journal, and Parents Magazine, among others. In addition to supporting a diverse group of schools in implementing yoga and mindfulness school wide, she serves as a national presenter and passionate advocate for youth mental health. Lisa lives in Southern Maine with her husband and two teenage children, who inspired the development of her programs in 2005.

 

Our Trainers
Our Yoga 4 Classrooms Trainers include a diverse group of experienced current and former school professionals who have first hand expertise with the tremendously beneficial impact of yoga and mindfulness integration at school. Our trainers provide a variety of in-service trainings at schools and related presentations at professional conferences around the country and Canada.

Meet our Trainers.

Bethany Butzer, Research Advisor

Bethany Butzer, Ph.D. has been affiliated with Yoga 4 Classrooms for several years, first by collaborating with researchers at UMass Lowell to publish a peer-reviewed research study on the effects of the Y4C curriculum on perceived behavior and cortisol concentrations in 2nd and 3rd graders. She also collaborated with Lisa Flynn to write an article on the scientific evidence for yoga in schools, as well as compile a comprehensive, free research repository which includes an organized reference list of peer-reviewed, published studies and research review articles on yoga and meditation for youth. 

Bethany received her Ph.D. in psychology in 2008 from the University of Western Ontario, Canada.  She recently spent 2.5 years as a postdoctoral research fellow at Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, where she studied the effects of yoga in school settings. She is also an author, speaker, researcher, and yoga teacher who helps people create a life they love. Most of Bethany’s research and teaching focuses on positive psychology, which emphasizes the development of human strength and potential. 

Bethany currently lives in Prague where, in addition to serving as Y4C's research advisor, she teaches a positive psychology course and continues to research yoga and meditation for youth.


With Gratitude


Many individuals have contributed to the ongoing development of Yoga 4 Classrooms. Classroom teachers, school principals and guidance counselors, school nurses, yoga teachers, psychologists, social workers, researchers from the Department of Physical Therapy at UMass Lowell, and many others provided input and feedback which contributed to the design of the program delivery model and curriculum.

Our deepest gratitude goes to former school Principal, Vicki Stewart, and the students and staff of Central Elementary School in South Berwick, Maine, for welcoming us into their classrooms from 2007 to 2010. Their feedback and encouragement during the 3-year pilot program were the inspiration to continue on to develop our program delivery model such that other school communities might benefit from implementation of Yoga 4 Classrooms.

To follow Yoga 4 Classrooms, we encourage you to subscribe to the E-newsletter and to follow our blog.  You can also find us on Facebook and Twitter.

It is so important for children to get in touch with themselves. Thank you for providing a program that gives teachers the tools to help them with that goal.

–S.A., Grade 3 Teacher

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