Education of the Heart Resources

We are pleased to share the following resources—links to organizations, curricula, and tools—that may be helpful in bringing the principles and practices of “Education of the Heart” to schools and communities.

We recognize this is not an exhaustive list. We have included organizations whose work was presented at the 33rd Mind & Life Dialogue as well as others with which we are familiar.

Organizations & Curricula

Academy for the Love of Learning, Institute for Teaching

At the Academy for the Love of Learning based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the learning spirit itself is at the heart of education. The Academy’s mission is to liberate the learning spirit by linking it to one’s innate sense of purpose, wonder and ongoing awakening of the heart. Their innovative contemplative-based learning practices and transformative methodologies are the subject of a major study illuminating how their work contributes to personal and community well-being.

Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-based Ethics, Emory University

The Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics supports a research-based approach to educating both heart and mind. The Center developed the SEE Learning program described in Chapter 5. Its programs are grounded in a theoretical framework for the cultivation of competencies that lead to the prosocial behaviors and outcomes that support flourishing and well-being for individuals and societies.

Center for Healthy Minds, University of Wisconsin, Kindness Curriculum

The Kindness Curriculum was developed through studies conducted by the Center for Healthy Minds at the University of Wisconsin. The curriculum teaches children to practice kindness and forgiveness, as well as to recognize and process their emotions. The mindfulness-based curriculum is free to download from the Center for Healthy Minds’ website and is available in both English and Spanish.

Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning

The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) defined SEL more than two decades ago. Today it collaborates with leading experts and supports districts, schools, and states across the U.S. to drive research, guide practice, and inform policy.

Compassion Matters

Compassion Matters, a project from The Dalai Lama Centre for Compassion in Oxford, United Kingdom, aims to create a kinder and happier society by showing children what compassion is and by inspiring them to lead compassionate lives. The organization seeks to achieve this by sharing its compassion and ethics curriculum with schools and education charities.

Compassionate Schools Project

The Compassionate Schools Project in Louisville, Kentucky is a partnership between the University of Virginia and Jefferson County Public Schools with support from Louisville Metro Government. It seeks to implement a curriculum developed by world-­class educators, scientists, and practitioners, that teaches elementary school students to cultivate focus, resilience, and well-­being for academic success. Facilitating the integrated development of mind and body, the project interweaves support in academic achievement, mental fitness, health, and compassionate character.

Cultivating Awareness and Resilience in Education

Cultivating Awareness and Resilience in Education (CARE) is a unique professional development program that helps teachers handle the stresses and rediscover the joys of teaching. The program offers teachers and administrators tools and resources for reducing stress, preventing burnout, enlivening teaching, and helping students thrive socially, emotionally and academically. Developed by and for teachers, CARE workshops can be provided in a variety of ways to meet the needs of different educator audiences.

DeStress for Success

DeStress for Success provides stress education for children making the transition from middle to high school. The program teaches children and teenagers what stress is, how to recognize it, and how to cope with it in their lives. DeStress for Success builds on what the students already know and provides them with the knowledge to recognize the ways in which stress affects the brain and body.

Flourish Foundation

Flourish Foundation is inspiring systemic change through heartmind cultivation, promoting personal well-being, benevolent social action, and environmental stewardship. To actualize this mission in schools, Flourish is developing and teaching a K-12 year-long curriculum that focuses on attention skills, emotional awareness, empathy, and kindness. Flourish also offers a vibrant multi-year leadership program for teens and young adults that builds an intentional youth community based on compassion, altruism, and human connection.

Greater Good in Education

Greater Good in Education is produced by UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center (GGSC). GGSC’s Education Program seeks to help education professionals better understand the roots of kind, helpful—or “prosocial”—behavior and emotional well-being, and how they can build those skills in themselves, their colleagues, and their students. The website offers free research-based strategies and practices to aid students’ social, emotional, and ethical development and to create flourishing schoolwide cultures.

Inner Kids Collaborative

Born in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Inner Kids Collaborative is a pay-what-you-can online platform that offers mindfulness lessons for children, tweens, and teens as well as for parents, caregivers, and educators via Zoom. Classes teach mindfulness through activity-based exercises and introspective practices led by experienced teachers. Participants gain skills to better cope with stress, develop friendly and open-minded awareness, and connect with others in a welcoming community.

Institute of Social Emotional Education

The Institute of Social Emotional Education (ISEE), described in Chapter 5, is dedicated to bringing the insights and techniques of social and emotional learning (SEL) to key sectors of society—schools, families, communities, and the workplace—in order to foster healthy relationships. It has expanded on the well-researched and validated SEL framework (e.g., self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills, and responsible decision making) to include a 6th component— interdependence—to facilitate the teaching of compassion, interconnectedness, cooperative learning, conflict resolution, and ethics.

Mindful Life Project

The Mindful Life Project supports the mental and emotional wellness of students, teachers, staff, leaders, and families through mindfulness programming. Its goal: to create a foundation of well-being at the individual level that leads to a connected school culture and climate where everyone feels safe, welcomed, valued, and believed in. Its work is focused on whole child education at the K-8th grade level.

Mindfulness Without Borders

Mindfulness Without Borders (MWB) provides secular, evidenced-based programs on mindfulness and social-emotional intelligence. MWB’s The RETHINK Kit is an online resource for educators, health professionals, and parents interested in developing skills in young people to systematically learn how to become more present and connected in their life. Weaving together technology and innovation, these activities encourage self-reflection, critical thinking, perspective-taking, and what it means to reach beyond oneself by extending compassion to others and the environment.


MindUP is the signature program of The Goldie Hawn Foundation. Based in neuroscience, MindUP gives children the knowledge and tools they need to manage stress, regulate emotions, and face the challenges of the 21st century with optimism, resilience, and compassion.

Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), Future of Education and Skills 2030

Recognizing the urgent need to open a global discussion about education, in 2015 the OECD launched the Future of Education and Skills 2030 project. The project aims to set goals and develop a common language for teaching and learning. Phase I of the project focuses on curriculum redesign and developing a conceptual framework for learning 2030. Phase II focuses on curriculum implementation and creating a conceptual framework for teaching 2030.

Toolbox Project

The Toolbox Project is a research-based, community-tested (K-6th grade) social and emotional learning (SEL) program that builds and strengthens children’s inherent capacity for resilience, self-mastery, and empathy for self and others through its curricula, methods, and strategies. TOOLBOX™ directs children to the experience and awareness of 12 innate “Tools” that already exist inside them. TOOLBOX naturally encourages social equity through empathy, understanding, and 12 skills or practices to navigate the complexities of everyday life.

Books & Articles

Chapter 2: Social and Emotional Learning: A Movement Comes of Age

Chapter 3: A Growing Crisis of Emotion

Chapter 4: Nature and Nurture in Human Development and SEL

Chapter 6: Helping Students and Teachers Manage Stress

Chapter 7: Mindfulness and the Training of Attention and Awareness

Chapter 9: Why Compassion Matters

Related Mind & Life Dialogues with the Dalai Lama

read more: