LOCAL NEWS

Jordan School District creates ‘zen center’ break area for teachers

Aug 23, 2022, 5:04 PM | Updated: 6:48 pm

WEST JORDAN, Utah — The last couple of years have been tough on students and teachers alike. Schools across the country have tried to answer those needs by borrowing ideas that have not necessarily been a part of traditional schools. The Jordan School District has come up with an idea for teachers that others may want to follow.

Teachers have been stressed out by the demands of the pandemic, staffing shortages, and the typical demands of teaching. They’re also stressed out by all of the things that stress out the rest of the population, like inflation and the housing crunch. So, the Jordan School District recognized they need a quiet space of their own.

“Teachers were just having a rough time. So, they started it out as soon as they could,” Cody Owen, enjoying a little bit of peace and quiet in the Zen Center at Sunset Middle School in West Jordan said.

Owen is an eighth-grade US History Teacher. He’s taking a break, enjoying a massage chair, the tranquility of a water feature, and clearing his head in the Zen Center.

“A place to come and be like… You know what? I need to relax,” he said.

When they’re in front of the students, teachers must keep their cool. They have to keep their struggles inside, no matter what they are.

“You’ve got to let some of the small stuff go,” Owen said. “So, that can really get to you. So to have a small quiet space to be able to like… take a deep breath, we’re here.”

The Zen Center provides a space for teachers to shake off whatever is troubling them, and recharge. “This is your quiet space where you can kind of let your stresses melt off a little bit, take a breather before you go back out into the fray,” Owen said.

A space that attends to a teacher’s needs in a way that the original school might not.

“If the adults aren’t OK, the kids don’t stand a chance. So, we need to be at our best while we’re here in the nest,” said Audrey Fish, Sunset Ridge Principal.

Fish said they borrowed the idea from the wellness room for the students.

“The adult one is called the Zen Center, and the kids’ is called the Zen Den.”

They started the Zen Den for students prior to the pandemic.

“That’s a really used space,” Fish said.

Recognizing wellness challenges for students and teachers, the district now has centers for students in all schools and plans to add rooms in each school for teachers.

“A space for them to just be if they want,” Fish said. “We don’t have a check-in, check out. It’s whoever wants to come and use it. But they can come and take a minute.”

It’s a way to make sure the students and teachers are having productive days.

“The main reason you teach is because you want to help students,” Owen said. “And, you can’t help students if you are about to jump down their throat.”

Funding for the wellness rooms for both the students and the teachers is coming from the Jordan Education Foundation and also the Ron McBride Foundation.

KSL 5 TV Live

Local News

Utah State GOP Chair Robert Axson expects turnout to be north of 100,000 people statewide for Super...

Lindsay Aerts

Utah Republicans ‘confident’ for caucus night Super Tuesday

Utahns are heading out Tuesday to cast their votes for who they want for President during Super Tuesday. 

4 minutes ago

Eagle Mountain homes still cleaning up tumbleweeds, days after the windstorm covered homes....

Garna Mejia

Eagle Mountain residents are still digging themselves out of tumbleweeds

Eagle Mountain residents are still cleaning up thousands of tumbleweeds that blew on their doorsteps during the weekend storm.

7 minutes ago

FILE - Utah's 2024 legislative session. (KSL TV)...

Shara Park

Opposition groups call for Gov. Cox to veto employee firearm bill for teachers, school staff

Opponents of HB119 are calling for Utah's Gov. Spencer Cox to veto.

12 minutes ago

Follow @KSL5TVLike us on Facebook...

Deanie Wimmer

Sterling Scholar program’s impressive legacy

From the Navajo reservation to Harvard to the University of Utah – a Utah student makes impressive gain with help from KSL/Deseret News Sterling Scholar program.

34 minutes ago

After a workplace shooting Sunday afternoon, the CEO of Varex Imaging, an international X-ray busin...

Brianna Chavez

CEO of Varex Imaging says he’s focused on helping employees after workplace shooting

After a workplace shooting Sunday afternoon, the CEO of Varex Imaging, an international X-ray business, told KSL the aftermath has been sad but is focused on how to move forward.

51 minutes ago

Jhon Alvaro-Alarcon Paredes, 20, is accused of shooting a teenager in a McDonald's parking lot in U...

Mary Culbertson

‘Wanted fugitive’: McDonald’s shooting suspect in custody after fleeing to Colorado

A man is in custody in Colorado after he allegedly shot a teenager in the parking lot of a Utah McDonald's and then fled the scene.

1 hour ago

Sponsored Articles

Modern chandelier hanging from a white slanted ceiling with windows in the backgruond...

Lighting Design

Light Up Your Home With These Top Lighting Trends for 2024

Check out the latest lighting design trends for 2024 and tips on how you can incorporate them into your home.

Technician woman fixing hardware of desktop computer. Close up....

PC Laptops

Tips for Hassle-Free Computer Repairs

Experiencing a glitch in your computer can be frustrating, but with these tips you can have your computer repaired without the stress.

Close up of finger on keyboard button with number 11 logo...

PC Laptops

7 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade Your Laptop to Windows 11

Explore the benefits of upgrading to Windows 11 for a smoother, more secure, and feature-packed computing experience.

Stylish room interior with beautiful Christmas tree and decorative fireplace...

Lighting Design

Create a Festive Home with Our Easy-to-Follow Holiday Prep Guide

Get ready for festive celebrations! Discover expert tips to prepare your home for the holidays, creating a warm and welcoming atmosphere for unforgettable moments.

Battery low message on mobile device screen. Internet and technology concept...

PC Laptops

9 Tips to Get More Power Out of Your Laptop Battery

Get more power out of your laptop battery and help it last longer by implementing some of these tips from our guide.

Users display warnings about the use of artificial intelligence (AI), access to malicious software ...

Les Olson

How to Stay Safe from Cybersecurity Threats

Read our tips for reading for how to respond to rising cybersecurity threats in 2023 and beyond to keep yourself and your company safe.

Jordan School District creates ‘zen center’ break area for teachers