Bringing Consciousness to Education

A thought piece on focusing on a child’s spiritual well-being through education.

Komal Shah
3 min readSep 19, 2020


Two 10 year old girls entered my classroom crying. Without questioning them, I told them to freshen up in the bathroom so I could teach the day’s lesson to the other 28 students who were sitting quietly, waiting for my instructions. The two girls entered the classroom 10 minutes later, still fraught with emotion, but they hesitantly sat down, ready to be “obedient” and learn about the algebra lesson for the day.

This was one of the moments where I asked myself the following question, “Am I actually giving my students a valuable education, or just perpetuating an antiquated education system that emphasizes IQ rather than EQ?”

The mantra goes something like this: Do well in school, get good grades, attend college, and get a good job.

And the underlying theme? Make your parents happy and fulfill your familial expectations. This is the ideal road to happiness. However, this may not be the only road to happiness.

I never struggled with education, so I never questioned the education system. But after five years of teaching middle school math, I realized how much our school system went against my personal values. I was passionate about teaching and leading. But my passion faltered under the pressure to adhere to ambitious math standards and curriculum that teachers could barely finish before the end of the school year. I felt frustrated because my kids needed more from me — not only as an educator, but as a human being.

As I’ve reflected on my own teaching career, I have begun to re-imagine what our school systems could look like for the future. Innovation is already out there. This has been seen through the implementation of movements such as the Waldorf or Montessori schools. There is no question that educators are becoming more innovative for our children. Parents are also getting involved by advocating for new ways to educate their child. And schools are moving to meet this demand.

But what if we took it a step further? What would it look like to integrate education with a focus on a child’s soul? What would it look like to teach kids beyond mere academic standards, and instead on value-based work that emphasizes emotional intelligence, love, kindness, and acceptance? What if we teach kids the goal of living a conscious and fulfilling life? Simply speaking, we could teach students to live life in the present moment.

I have begun to re-think a school that serves a purpose of raising an empowered child to live his or her own truth. This will look different from how we are educating our children now. But, our kids have the capacity to be cultivated as beings who are:






As Sadhguru, an Indian Yogi and author, has stated, “Let’s raise our kids towards consciousness, rather than college” (Isha Foundation, 2019). The question is — is this even sustainable or possible? Can our idea of success be shifted so children actually strive towards what they want to be, not what our culture and society expects of them?

So here are ideas of a school focused on spiritual well-being:

  1. Children are given access, but not required, to engage in practices that connect them with their inner selves (yoga, meditation, reiki, etc.)
  2. Children are given choices in what they want to do for the day, engaging them with things that excite THEM.
  3. Children follow the self-directed learning methodology of elective-based classes. Similar to the Montessori Movement.
  4. Children can do math and read, OR can do art and sports. All of these are key to the enrichment of a child. Thus, cultivating emphasis on creativity as a key to the development of a child.
  5. Children are supported by adults who act as mentors, guiding them on their “own” journey without perpetuating our own biases onto what learning should look like.

Does this work? There’s no answer just yet — but the time has come to re-imagine our schooling more than ever. I think back to those two 10 year old girls that walked into my classroom, knowing that all they were seeking were tools that supported their entire well-being.

With this new way, we may just be able to create a more conscious way of life for the next generation.



Komal Shah

Author of Raise Your Hand! | Speaker | Consultant. Envisioning classrooms that cultivate conscious children.