About Us

Our vision is for every school to be a mindful community in which all students can learn, thrive, and become compassionate citizens empowered to strengthen the well-being of the world.

teacher leading yoga in the classroom

Our Mission

Our mission is to empower educators to create mindful classrooms that embody a culture of compassion and inclusion, support whole child development, and enhance student success.

Our easy-to-implement training and resources encourage the integration of simple, impactful “mindful moments” designed to enrich the daily teaching and learning experience while promoting students’ social, emotional, physical and academic growth, teacher well-being, and positive climate.

Y4C provides school communities with a new language of wellness and a “toolbox for resiliency” – coping skills and mindful habits that will enable students’ to become self and socially-aware, responsible, compassionate citizens who thrive at school, home and throughout their lives.

Our Story

In 2007, while volunteering to teach yoga and mindfulness in a local elementary school, Lisa Flynn was inspired and challenged by the classroom teachers and students she encountered to create a yoga and mindfulness-based program focused on supporting whole child development, and ultimately, student success. The challenge? Making it simple, inclusive of and accessible to all, suitable for the typical classroom space, cost-effective, and sustainable.

In 2010, after three years of development, piloting and research, Yoga 4 Classrooms, the first classroom-specific yoga and mindfulness program in the world, was officially launched. With a simple 3-Step Implementation Success Path focusing on empowering schools from the inside, Y4C quickly became recognized as an innovative leader in the growing field of MY-SEL (mindfulness, yoga and SEL) in education. With a growing team of experienced educator trainers, Y4C’s reach grew rapidly. While individual school professionals completed the Yoga & Mindfulness in the Classroom Training via the self-paced course or in person learning opportunities held across the nation, schools and school districts began requesting Y4C Professional Development days for their entire staffs. At the same time, our signature product, the Yoga 4 Classrooms Activity Cards, became a best-seller.

From the start, we recognized the recipe for successful implementation of a school-based yoga and mindfulness is unique to each school and depends on many variables. In 2012, we launched the IMPLEMENT Leadership Training, a train-the-trainer program designed to inspire and empower experienced school-based professionals and teams to develop customized, phased action plans for leading schoolwide implementation in their own schools.

In 2020, due to the pandemic, we pivoted to live remote teaching and learning formats which have not only been enjoyable and effective, but have expanded accessibility to all aspects of the program. That led us to up-level our online presence with a rebrand and a new, more user-friendly website launched in the fall of 2021. To date, Y4C is implemented in more than 60,000 classrooms, reaching well over 1,200,000 students worldwide. In addition, nearly 250 Y4C School IMPLEMENT Leaders are supporting schoolwide implementation in their schools. In order to better serve and support our growing community of educators and schools, we’ll soon be expanding our offerings to include exciting new continuing education and professional development courses, as well as innovative tools to enhance implementation and impact.

We want to empower entire all school communities with the many gifts of mindful awareness. We want to empower educators to create inclusive, positive, connected classrooms while supporting their own self-care and well-being. We want to empower students to thrive at school and become resilient, responsible, compassionate adults who create positive change in the world. We want to support schools and school districts in meeting their goals focused on SEL, mental health, and the creation of safe and healthy schools.

We hope you’ll join us in this mission!

Group photo of classroom yoga leaders
Meet Lisa

Our Founder

Lisa Flynn, founder of Yoga 4 Classrooms, is a mission-driven author, trainer, and education consultant dedicated to supporting educators and schools in sustainably implementing yoga, mindfulness and SEL to support the well-being of the entire school community. With a particular interest in its potential to support mental health and prevention, she believes mindfulness should be encouraged from an early age and made accessible to all.

Lisa Flynn headshot, yoga in the classroom

Our Team

Lisa Stevens

Lisa Stevens

Accounting Manager

Y4C IMPLEMENT Leaders

Our Y4C School IMPLEMENT Leaders are school-based teams and individual school professionals who have completed our advanced level trainer-the-trainer IMPLEMENT Leadership Training. Their goal?  Launch or expand yoga and mindfulness as a schoolwide initiative to support physical, social, and emotional health and wellness, learning readiness and a positive and compassionate school climate. Currently there are 250 Y4C School IMPLEMENT Leaders and counting spread out in schools/districts across the nation and beyond. Join us!

group photo of yoga in the classroom leaders

Join Our Team!

We are currently seeking a skilled Content & Digital Marketing Coordinator to join our team part-time (remote). Think you’d be a perfect fit for our team? We’d love to hear from you!

Our Company Values

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Lisa Flynn

Lisa Flynn

Y4C Founder

Lisa Flynn, E-RYT 500, RCYT, founded Yoga 4 Classrooms in 2007 with a mission to empower youth with the skills they need to healthy, happy, resilient at school, at home and throughout their lives. Y4C provides professional development training and resources to school professionals, schools and related organizations that support the social, emotional, cognitive and physical well-being of children, youth and the adults who serve them. The program is used in over 60,000 classrooms worldwide.

With a degree in Communication, an entrepreneurial spirit and a deeply personal passion for supporting youth resilience and mental health and prevention, Lisa retired from a 10-year career in marketing and business management before founding ChildLight Yoga (now ChildLight Education Company) in 2005, and then launching its sub-brand, Yoga 4 Classrooms, a fews later. After growing both brands for 15 years, she passed the reins of ChildLight to new ownership in 2019 in order to focus on forwarding the mission of Y4C full-time.

Lisa is author of several titles including Yoga 4 Classrooms Activity Card Deck (2011); Yoga for Children: 200+ Yoga Poses, Breathing Exercises and Meditations for Healthier, Happier, More Resilient Children; and Yoga for Children–Yoga Cards: 50+ Yoga and Mindfulness Activities for Kids (2018). She also is a contributing author of  Best Practices for Yoga in Schools (2015) and Stories of School Yoga: Narratives from the Field (2019). As well, she sponsors the Research Repository: Yoga, Meditation and Mindfulness for Children, Adolescents and in Schools, a continuously updated resource she developed for schools, program providers, researchers and others interested in the growing body of evidence supporting mindful practices in schools. Lisa also contributed to Effects of a classroom-based yoga intervention…, the first peer-reviewed and published research study to use both subjective and objective data to examine the acute and longitudinal effects of a school-based yoga program.

As national presenter, trainer and consultant, Lisa supports educators, school leaders and districts in sustainably implementing yoga, mindfulness and SEL to support the unique needs of their school communities. Her work has been featured in media such as Fox News, Education Week, Forbes, Yoga Journal, Greater Good, and HuffPost Parents. She has been honored with several business awards including “Influential Businesswoman of the Year” and “Small Business of the Year” for innovative contributions to the local and national community.

Closer to home, Lisa is a University of New Hampshire PD&T faculty member, and a school board director for the southern Maine school district in which she and her husband raised their now college-aged children. In her downtime, you might find her batch cooking or mindful walking through the local state park.,

Lisa Stevens

Lisa Stevens

Accounting Manager

Lisa Stevens joined the Yoga 4 Classroom team in 2018. As Accounting Manager, she handles all day-to-day financial operations. She has worked in accounting with a variety of non-profit and for-profit companies and is proud to be part of a mission-driven organization making such an impactful difference in the lives of children and teachers. Lisa graduated from the University of South Carolina with a B.A. in International Studies and a Minor in Spanish. She lives in New Hampshire with her family where she enjoys outdoor activities and practicing yoga with her 8 yr. old daughter, Lucy.

Jennifer Griest-Hayes

Jennifer Griest-Hayes

Trainer

For more than 9 years, Jen Griest Hayes, BS, MA, E-RYT, RCYT, has served as a national trainer for Yoga 4 Classrooms, inspiring school professionals to integrate yoga and mindfulness throughout the school day to support self-regulation, learning and positive climate. She spent 17 years in the classroom as an Intervention Specialist and team teacher, spanning grades K-12.  As a yoga practitioner, she intuitively integrated movement-based tools and mindfulness techniques to help her students increase self-awareness while learning individual regulation skills. Noticing the tremendous benefit her students were experiencing, Jen went on to obtain yoga teacher certifications for all ages and abilities, from birth through teens and into adulthood, including those with autism/special needs.  She completed the 95 hour Registered Children’s Yoga Teacher certification through the ChildLight Yoga program (RCYS) and her RYT-200 through Nirvana Yoga. She has also studied with Mindful Schools and has a special interest in the impact of trauma and trauma-informed yoga and instruction. 

As the owner of Afterlight Fitness and Educational Consulting, Jen provides yoga, movement, and mindfulness programming as well as customized professional development in mental, emotional, and physical well-being for educational institutions, health and human services, and community organizations. She is also an Instructor and the Director of Curriculum and Instruction Development for ZENworks Yoga, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization that provides yoga and mindfulness programming for children and families in underserved communities in and surrounding Cleveland and Akron, Ohio.  

When she is not providing instruction to others or practicing yoga herself, Jen enjoys spending time in nature hiking with her family, cooking, creating, and hosting events for family and friend

Meg Durkin

Meg Durkin

Trainer

Meg Durkin is a national trainer for Yoga 4 Classrooms having led over 60 Yoga 4 Classrooms professional development trainings in 13 states and online since 2012. She has always believed that yoga and mindfulness belong in school so that all children can learn life skills of self-regulation, self-awareness, and character education. In fact, she had been actively seeking a ready-to-go curriculum to share with students in a space-crunched classroom, something that was accessible and inclusive of all. She was so impressed and inspired by the Y4C training, materials, and the impact in the classroom, she asked to join the team!

In addition to being a registered adult and child yoga teacher through Yoga Alliance with credentials including RYT 500, E-RYT 200, and RCYT, Meg has studied MBSR in Mind-Body Medicine with Jon Kabat-Zinn and is also a certified health coach through the Institute of Integrative Nutrition. Meg has represented Yoga 4 Classrooms leading mindful movement breaks at the New Hampshire School Counselor Association Conference (NHSCA) and the Mindfulness in Society Conference. She is also a repeat presenter at the National Kids Yoga Conference. Meg holds a B.A. from Middlebury College and a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from Simmons College.

Through her work with Yoga 4 Classrooms, ChildLight Education Company and her own Boston area company, Mindfulness with Meg, she continues to support educators, children’s yoga and mindfulness providers, parents and children promoting stress reduction, nutrition, movement and mindfulness as a foundation for success at home, school and in life. When she’s not planting seeds of yoga and mindfulness, you can Meg out in nature walking, biking, kayaking, or cross country skiing.