Screen legend Goldie Hawn teaches Hackney children about Buddhist techniques

10:19 06 December 2012

Hollywood actress Goldie Hawn visited Lauriston Primary School in Hackney. Picture: Isabel Infantes

Hollywood actress Goldie Hawn visited Lauriston Primary School in Hackney. Picture: Isabel Infantes

Archant

Legendary film star Goldie Hawn brought her charismatic enthusiasm and joy to youngsters at a Hackney school, giving them life lessons in how to be peaceful citizens and walk away from bullies.

Goldie Hawn spent time looking at children's work.Goldie Hawn spent time looking at children's work.

The still-stunning 67-year old actress, director, and producer stopped off at Lauriston School to see the Hawn Foundation’s MindUP programme, which teaches Buddhist techniques of mindfulness, in action.

Hawn founded the organisation seven years ago to pursue her vision of nurturing happiness, joy and empathy and to promote children’s academic success through emotional learning.

Despite only being implemented at the school in Rutland Road two months ago, teachers and governors there are astounded at the impact it has been making.

The Private Benjamin star began her visit on Monday by discussing how the brain affects emotions with a class of six and seven-year-olds, and was clearly moved by a Year 5 poetry performance about soldiers who fought in the First World War.

Hawn spoke about Buddhist techniques. Picture: Isabel InfantesHawn spoke about Buddhist techniques. Picture: Isabel Infantes

She said: “What we are talking about is empathy. Empathy is something you feel for others.

“And what an interesting thing, because war is a very terrible thing. Who fights wars? People. And who starts wars? People. Because who makes up the government? People.

“So we are all just people, so we have to make sure that you leaders of tomorrow will literally become the greatest people you can be and you can be peace,” she told them.

Hawn then met a Year 6 class to lead a “brain break” sitting cross-legged on the floor. Signalled by a bell, the children focused on their breathing and were still for a few minutes until the bell rang again.

The Hollywood actress was greeted enthusiastically. Picture: Isabel InfantesThe Hollywood actress was greeted enthusiastically. Picture: Isabel Infantes

“It’s really a good thing to do this. It helps you be more creative, it helps you learn better, it helps you remember more. We do this three times a day, guys you are going to love this,” Hawn said.

Before she left, she told the Hackney Gazette: “I just think this school is amazing. These children are so receptive. I mean they are really going to do well, and they have only just started implementing it.

“I have seven-year-olds explaining how the brain works. I was almost brought to tears, so great work at this school.”

The Hawn Foundation began work in Hackney two years ago at Nightingale Primary School in Hackney Wick.

Now seven Hackney schools are among 20 across London that are following the programme.

Sign up for our news alerts today!

Our editors' picks for the day's top news delivered to your inbox or phone.

Sign up for email alerts Sign up for mobile alerts
1
2 3 4 5 6
7

Latest London Education News

Islington Council denies school pork ban

Thursday, February 12, 2015
Banned: Pork products are off the menu at primary schools

The town hall has made an apparent U-turn on its decision not to serve pork in primary schools.

Haydn Evans

An award-winning secondary school in London’s East End is going into special measures over concerns about its sixth-form Islamic society’s possible links to radical preachers.

Students from across the country take part in a march through the capital to protest against tuition fees, debt and spending cuts (Picture: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire)

Thousands of students from across the country descended on central London to plead with politicians to scrap tuition fees and wipe debts - but the protest was marred by a minority who attacked officers and caused damage to buildings.

London
Actress Barbara Windsor. Picture: PA Images/Anwar Hussein

Much-loved Barbara Windsor—star of Carry On films and TV’s EastEnders—is being awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of East London.

Girls celebrate while opening their GCSE results at Stoke Newington school  (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

London’s children do better at GCSEs than the rest of the country because more of them come from ethnic minorities, according to research.

United Kingdom
Kids Company founder Camila Batmanghelidjh in discussion with the Prime Minister (Photo by Oli Scarff/Getty Images)

Child poverty has become such a problem in the capital that many parents go without food to feed their children, and some turn to desperate measures.

United Kingdom

Latest Stories from SNAP.PA

Beautiful Instagram pic and motivational comment. What’s not to love?

Read more

After the whole internet was discussing #TheDress it was inevitable the two stories would collide.

Read more

The political editor will be taking time off for treatment.

Read more

Promoted content

A look at one of our previous Design Fairs

Chelsea Old Town Hall will be the venue for the renowned Desire Fair from 6-8 March 2015. This stunning mixed media jewellery and silversmithing event where visitors can purchase direct from contemporary designer makers selected from the best in the UK is an event not to be missed.

Take our quiz and find out!

A survey conducted last year revealed that Britain is the fourth sexiest country in the world, with the UK sex toy industry worth an estimated £250 million a year.

What is this?

Near You Now

Don't Miss...

The political editor will be taking time off for treatment.

It involves a picture of a hand. You can guess what shape it is making.

About 40 swans have died in the last year and local vet says she has never seen anything like this in her 30 years in practice.

Quirky London