Karuna School Curricula

Life Skills

Some of the questions asked in the Life Skills Program are:

“Who am I?”

“How can I be my most authentic, effective and balanced self?”

“What is my unique contribution to the world?”

“Who are you and how are we connected?’

The cornerstone of the Life Skills curriculum is the practice of “council,” a communication ritual that fosters discipline, deep listening, focused speaking, respect for differences, and awareness of unexpected similarities. Students and teachers sit in a circle exploring beliefs, values, and concerns, speaking only when holding a ”talking object,” thus giving everyone the right to speak or be silent without interruption or response.

Other methods for teaching life skills include journaling and other writing exercises, experiential exercises for group building, role play, information sessions offered by teachers, films or guest speakers, and mindfulness meditation, guided imagery and relaxation exercises.

Units in the Life Skills Program

  • Mindfulness Meditation
  • Compassion Training
  • Happiness 101
  • Non-Violent Communication
  • Mindful Listening
  • Leading a Balanced Life
  • Managing Emotions
  • Time Management
  • Relationship Skills
  • Decision-Making
  • Coping with Change
  • What Does a Mindful Relationship to Substances Look Like?
  • What Does a Mindful Relationship to Sexuality Look Like?
  • What Does a Mindful Relationship to Technology Look Like?
  • Death and Grieving
  • Media Literacy
  • Fear, Courage and Trust
  • Understanding Your Learning Style
  • Understanding Money

Peace and Equity Studies

  • Systems Theory and Interdependence
  • The History of Non-Violent Movements
  • Organizational Development and Leadership
  • Unlearning Privilege
  • Mediation Training and Conflict Resolution
  • Restorative Justice
  • Reconciliation and Forgiveness
  • Homelessness and Poverty
  • Children of War
  • Making Peace with Mother Earth

World Religions and Values

  • Religions of the World
  • Values in World Thought
  • The Empathic Civilization: The Race to Global Consciousness
  • Social Ethics
  • Women and Violence and Gender Reconciliation
  • Indigenous Ways of Knowing

Sustainability Studies

  • Sustainable Living and Green Building
  • Ecobiology
  • Environmental Activism
  • Outdoor Leadership and Adventure Education
  • Systems Theory and Interdependence
  • Organic and Biodynamic Gardening and Permaculture
  • A Farm to Table Program

Service Learning, Adventure Learning and Rites of Passage

The cornerstone of the service learning program is a deep respect for the perspective, experience and needs of the people whom we are serving and a curiosity about how we are being served at the same time. We strive for mutuality in all our relationships, maintaining the conviction that everyone in authentic relationship is in the process of being changed by the other.

  • Service Learning from Local to Global
  • 9th Grade Adventure Trip (3 days)
  • 12th Grade Rite of Passage Trip (5 days)
  • Service Learning Trip to South Dakota: volunteering on the Cheyenne River Reservation and interviewing Chief Arvol Looking Horse, 19th generation Keeper of the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe
  • The Global Village: Preparing for a Global Service Learning Experience
  • Service Learning Trip to India: volunteering in Hindu and Tibetan orphanages/schools and interviewing His Holiness the Dalai Lama
  • Service Learning Trip to South Africa: volunteering in township orphanages/schools and interviewing Archbishop Desmond Tutu
  • Service Learning Trip to the Sachamama Center in the Peruvian high Amazon for Spanish emersion and studying and participating in bio-cultural regeneration projects

Contemplative Practice

  • Mindfulness Meditation
  • Focusing
  • Deep Listening
  • Yoga On and Off the Mat
  • Tai Chi
  • Sacred Chanting
  • Contemplative Dance
Ventolin And Xerostomia