On January 21, seventh graders conducted mindfulness exercises under the direction of CCSD’s psychologist coach, Dr. Anita Kilea. Mindfulness is a calming meditative practice achieved by focusing awareness inward and on the present moment to realize and accept one’s emotions, thoughts, and physical sensations. Tuesday’s sessions were born out of discussions with the seventh grade’s Key Communicator students, who suggested mindfulness as a way to overcome the anxiety they had about taking their first-ever midterm exams this week. In response, CMS counselor Jackie Hoffman arranged to have Dr. Kilea in the day before midterms began to lead mindfulness sessions for all seventh graders during their social studies time. Along with studying, getting a good night’s sleep, and eating well, students could apply mindfulness techniques to prepare for a big test or any other anxiety inducing situation they may face.