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Resources For Schools

The mission of Circling The Wagons is focused on two complimentary objectives:

  1. Teaching & Coaching young people so they have the life skills they need to thrive in the digital age.
  2. Providing resources, training, & support for parents & educators.

One of the most renowned educators of our time, recently featured on PBS, has this to say about us:

"I learned so much about what I did not know I did not know. I also appreciated all the suggestions about what works and why. Thank-you so much and keep up the great work."  (Dr. Martha Urioste, PhD)


Given the on-going challenges posed by COVID-19, you'll be very happy to know that our CTW Stress-Reduction Series is ready for you to download from the Mindfulness page, and that our live programs are available on Zoom. 

Likewise, as you'll see in the "Teen Talk" section below, we are offering a special series called "YES I CAN!" It is designed to strengthen Mental Health, SEL, & Life Skills in response to the pandemic. The focus is on reducing stress, and increasing capacity, tenacity, & resilience. "YES I CAN!" provides kids with the tools they need to navigate their new circumstances with optimism & skill, grace & grit. With these inner pillars in place, they are much better equipped to stay focused academically & strong emotionally.

Given the on-going stress of COVID-19, NOW is the time for PTAs & PTOs to focus their efforts on Stress Reduction, SEL, & Mental Health. This is the best way to support students, parents, & educators, whose job has never been more difficult. We MUST circle the wagons. All of us. Together. NOW. We're in! 

CTW Stress-Reduction Series

It is sad but true that many schools do not have the resources to hire enough mental-health professionals to handle the ever-increasing case-load of kids who are suffering from anxiety & depression, and a host of emotional, attentional, and behavioral issues. This mental-health crisis is wreaking havoc, making it harder and harder for teachers to teach and for students to learn.

In response, more and more schools in-the-know have begun integrating the practice of Mindfulness into their classrooms and guidance counseling departments, with fantastic results. Decades of evidence-based research has proven that Mindfulness:

-Reduces stress, anxiety, depression, & anger
-Eases difficult emotions
-Increases well-being
-Strengthens compassion for self & others
-Increases concentration
(Kabat-Zinn et al, beginning in 1982 )

-Increases activation in the left prefrontal cortex, the area of the brain associated with happiness, positive thoughts & emotions.
(Richard Davidson et al 2003)

-Decreases gray matter density in the amygdala, which is known to play an important role in anxiety & stress.
-Increases gray matter density in the temporal-parietal junction, which is associated with self-awareness, compassion & introspection, and in the hippocampus, which is known to be important for memory & learning.
(Britta Holzel et al 2011)

As such, we are delighted to make available the CTW Stress-Reduction Series, which can be downloaded from the Mindfulness page, and which was created by CTW Founder, Sharada Nizami. Decades ago she trained in Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) with the scientist who developed it, MIT educated Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn. She is delighted that you too can now benefit from these simple, beautiful, transformational practices. 

Designed for classroom-use by teachers and home-use by students, the CTW Stress-Reduction Series includes 10 professionally recorded MP3s and a full-color 22-page Practice Guide.  This gives teachers & students quick & easy access to the full range of classroom-management and stress-reduction tools they now have at their fingertips. The CTW Stress-Reduction Series is totally customizable, empowering teachers to respond promptly & skillfully to what is happening in their classrooms, and providing students with 24/7 support at home. 


"We become what we do repeatedly. So we need to be careful what we do repeatedly." (Dr. Clif Tennison - CTW Psychiatrist)

Kids and adults respond to stress unskillfully because they have not been taught how to respond skillfully.  So we designed the CTW Stress-Reduction Series to teach them.  

It can be used with the entire class or with individual students to:

  • Focus attention at the beginning of class
  • Reduce stress before an exam
  • Increase energy after lunch
  • Foster kindness & social skills
  • Strengthen resilience & emotional intelligence
  • Restore inner peace when a child is out of control
  • Ease difficult emotions
  • Transform ‘behavior problems’ into personal growth
  • Instill optimism & altruism
  • Shift students’ inner condition from stressed to blessed
  • Increase clarity, tenacity, & capacity
  • Improve concentration & executive functioning
  • Boost academic performance

Learn More


The objective of this series is to fill in some of the curriculum gaps in Mental-Health Education and Social & Emotional Learning (SEL) that exist in many schools. CTW Teen Talk is designed to expand, uplift, and enlighten teens’ thinking, and equip them for intra-and inter-personal success and robust mental health in the digital age. Presented in an engaging and entertaining manner, CTW Teen Talk sparks individual reflection, meaningful conversation, and personal & social transformation. When all is said and done, when all the parents, teachers, guidance counselors, & social workers are gone, we want to have empowered young people with strong IQ, EQ, & SEL so they can navigate their lives skillfully & happily.


"YES I CAN!" : Rising to the Challenge of COVID-19 : Seven Steps for Strengthening Mental Health & Developing The New Life Skills The Pandemic Demands 

In order to protect our physical health during this pandemic, there are some very specific steps we must take. Likewise with our mental health. There are only two ways to respond to life's challenges: unskillfully & skillfully. People respond unskillfully because they have not been taught how to respond skillfully. We created this series to give students, parents, & educators the tools they need to respond skillfully, so they know WHAT TO DO & WHY. "YES I CAN!" teaches the principles & practices that MUST be put in place to strengthen mental health and develop the new life skills the pandemic demands. 

COVID-19 came upon us so unexpectedly, catching people off guard, completely psychologically unprepared. What we hoped would be a sprint has certainly become a marathon. We are being asked nothing less than to rethink and redesign virtually every aspect of our lives, including how we educate our children. In order to act wisely, we must see clearly. This requires inner stability. Equanimity. Consistent, compassionate present-moment awareness of ourselves and our surroundings. AKA Mindfulness. In order to run this marathon successfully, students, parents, & educators need a great deal of support. We CAN win this race IF we are in great shape psychologically & emotionally, with stress levels very low, Mindfulness very high, and new life skills very strong.

That is why we created "YES I CAN!" This groundbreaking series provides practical strategies for reducing stress and increasing the capacity, tenacity, & resilience everyone needs to succeed. The strength of these inner pillars is what empowers us to stay focused & productive, resilient & optimistic. 

SOLUTION-FOCUSED & SKILL-BUILDING, this dynamic series is presented in seven weekly sessions, so that step by step, the new skills can be integrated into daily life. Each session includes clear learning objectives, in-class activities, after-class activities, and practical strategies for kids, parents, & educators. It also includes heaping doses of love & encouragement kids desperately need.



-PROTECTING YOUR AMAZING BRAIN – Part I – Why Devices Wreak Havoc

-PROTECTING YOUR AMAZING BRAIN– Part II – Why Mindfulness Brings Peace

-REAL FRIENDS – Part I : Why We Need Them

-REAL FRIENDS - Part II : How to Be A Great Friend & Cultivate Great Friendships

-COMMUNICATION SKILLS - Part I : Learning When to Text, Call, or Meet-Up

-COMMUNICATION SKILLS - Part II: Learning How To Listen Deeply & Speak Authentically

-KINDNESS – Part I -  The Golden Rule: Why Being Kind is Always Right

-KINDNESS – Part II - The Neuroscience of Kindness & Why Being Kind Makes You Happy  

-HAPPINESS- Part 1  - How to Increase It in Daily Life

-HAPPINESS -Part II - Harnessing The Power of Habit

–MAXIMIZING MY TIME & LIFE -  Part II —The Joy of Service




More and more schools in-the-know are setting up designated spaces in their buildings where kids who are struggling can go to calm down, collect themselves, re-group, and re-focus, so they can return to class ready to learn. Schools are also using these spaces for self-reflection in lieu of detention. Here at CTW, we are keenly interested in galvanizing a paradigm shift from retributive to restorative when it comes to kids who are having a hard time.

It is no secret that ‘behavior problems’ are often triggered by emotional and psychological issues, and that on-site mental-health professionals are in short supply. As such, we designed CTW Breathing Rooms to give kids the opportunity to learn vital self-management skills, and to give schools an accessible, affordable, viable solution to the mounting disruption that is wreaking havoc in the classroom.

In schools where Mindfulness is taught, it is not uncommon for kids to return to class ready to apologize to their teacher and classmates. Schools that are integrating Mindfulness into the culture of their learning community are reducing suspensions, and increasing social harmony & academic productivity.

As such, we are delighted to provide on-site training for teachers, guidance counselors, and parent volunteers, equipping them to set up CTW Breathing Rooms and facilitate 1-on-1 sessions with students. We’d be honored to help you. 



Educators & Administrators are painfully aware of how increasingly complicated and difficult it is to effectively deliver content. Kids are chronically distracted and digitally addicted, making it nearly impossible for them to concentrate on their studies.  Making the situation even more daunting are the unprecedented levels of emotional and psychological issues that are impairing cognitive & executive functioning, emotional intelligence, and social skills. All of these factors continue to exacerbate the complexity of administering, the challenge of teaching, and the obstacles to learning.

In response to this knotty problem, Circling The Wagons is providing Educational Consulting to schools in both the public and private sectors. By definition, consultants are not caught up in the daily grind, and as such, possess the decisive advantage of having an outsider’s perspective. And in our case, the CTW Team also has three hundred years of experience in all the disciplines that impinge upon the current crisis in our schools: education, psychiatry, psychotherapy, pediatrics, guidance counseling, teaching, administration, mindfulness-based stress reduction, and life-coaching. Our Consulting Services are intentionally holistic because this is what is needed. We’d be honored to help you.     

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