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.
Our mission is to empower educators to create classrooms that embody a culture of compassion and inclusion, support whole child development, and enhance student success, one mindful moment at a time.
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, at home and throughout their lives.
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 to implement, 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 school-wide implementation in their own schools.
In 2020, due to the pandemic and related school closures, we pivoted to live remote teaching and learning formats. This not only had the unexpected benefit of being enjoyable and effective, but it also expanded accessibility to all aspects of the program while reducing costs for individuals, schools and districts who previously had to pay for related travel. That led us to up-level our online presence with a rebrand and a new, more user-friendly website which was launched Fall 2021. In 2023, Lisa Flynn passed the reins of Yoga 4 Classrooms to Sarah Kirk. Sarah went through the Y4C training and IMPLEMENT training in 2019 and saw firsthand the difference yoga and mindfulness can make in the school setting. As a past school counselor and educational consultant, Sarah is a passionate advocate for the social and emotional development of all students. She looks forward to continuing to bring this vital work to schools across the nation and beyond.
To date, Y4C has been implemented in more than 60,000 classrooms, reaching well over 1,200,000 students worldwide. In addition, over 250 Y4C School IMPLEMENT Leaders are currently supporting schoolwide implementation in their own schools and school districts. 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.
Yoga 4 Classrooms endeavors to:
Empower all school communities with the many gifts of mindful awareness.
Empower educators to create inclusive, positive, connected classrooms while supporting their own self-care and well-being.
Empower students to thrive at school and become resilient, responsible, compassionate adults who create positive change in the world.
Empower schools and school districts to meet their goals focused on SEL, mental health, and the creation of safe and healthy schools.
Please join us!
Dr. Sarah Kirk is a visionary leader and passionate advocate for bringing the power of yoga and mindfulness into educational settings. In 2023, she assumed the role of owner and CEO of Yoga 4 Classrooms, an organization dedicated to fostering well-being, emotional regulation, and focus among students, teachers, and school staff. With extensive experience successfully implementing yoga and mindfulness in the classroom as a school counselor, Sarah has seen firsthand the positive impact of yoga and mindfulness in schools.
And then there are those who are doing this work every day on the ground in their classrooms and schools and school districts! Our Y4C School IMPLEMENT Leaders are school-based teams and individual school professionals who have completed our advanced level trainer-the-trainer IMPLEMENT Leadership program. Their goal? To launch or expand MY-SEL (yoga, mindfulness and SEL) as a schoolwide initiative to support physical, social, and emotional wellbeing, 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 U.S. and beyond.
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Check back soon for more info about why these values are so important to us!
Dr. Sarah Kirk is a visionary leader and passionate advocate for bringing the power of yoga and mindfulness into educational settings. In 2023, she assumed the role of owner and CEO of Yoga 4 Classrooms, an organization dedicated to fostering well-being, emotional regulation, and focus among students, teachers, and school staff. With extensive experience successfully implementing yoga and mindfulness in the classroom, Sarah has seen firsthand the positive impact of yoga and mindfulness in schools.
Sarah has spent her career advocating for the holistic well-being of students. She is dedicated to helping students, educators, and caregivers live more peacefully through mindfulness, positive behavioral supports, and emotion management. She recognizes the critical role social and emotional learning plays in a child’s development and is a relentless advocate for addressing mental health and social and emotional development in schools. She firmly believes that every child deserves access to tools and resources that foster their holistic development. Through her work and advocacy, she is committed to creating a world where every child can thrive academically, socially, and emotionally.
Recognized for her exceptional contributions to the school counseling field, Sarah was honored as Oklahoma’s School Counselor of the Year in 2018 and was a finalist for the National School Counselor of the Year award in 2019. In 2019, her School Counseling Program became a Recognized ASCA Model Program (RAMP), becoming only the second school in the state of Oklahoma to receive the prestigious award. From 2020-2023, Sarah worked for the Oklahoma State Department of Education as a school counseling leader, working to implement comprehensive school counseling and schoolwide social and emotional, academic, and college and career development across the state. Her influence extended beyond her state and schools, as she served on the Board of Directors for the esteemed American School Counselor Association from 2019 to 2022. Her work at both the local and national levels has driven progress in the field of school counseling and school support systems.
Sarah’s journey began with a solid academic foundation. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development and Family Science from Oklahoma State University, laying the groundwork for her compassionate and empathetic approach to school counseling. She furthered her education by obtaining a Master of Science degree in Counseling from Oklahoma State University, equipping her with the skills to make a genuine difference in the lives of those she serves. Always striving to enhance her expertise, Sarah received her Ph.D. in Counselor Education and Supervision from Capella University in 2023.
In her free time, Sarah finds joy in nurturing her relationships with friends and family. Whether it’s sharing laughter over a meal, embarking on new adventures, or simply spending quality time together, she cherishes the connections she has built. She adores her role as an aunt to her niece and three nephews. Sarah shares her life and adventures with her partner, Ben, and their beloved dog, Crew, in San Diego, California. Together, they embrace the beautiful landscapes and diverse culture that California has to offer. Whether exploring the great outdoors, enjoying quality time with those she loves, or embarking on new experiences, you can always count on Sarah to be up to something new!
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 10 year old daughter, Lucy.
Stepfani Croteau joined the Yoga 4 Classrooms team in 2022. As the Founder & Senior Marketing Specialist of SKC Creative, she brings with her over a decade of marketing experience across non-profit organizations, small businesses, and multi-million dollar corporations across the United States.
Stepfani is passionate about forming lasting relationships with those that she works with. Having spent many years in business development, she creates new friendships everywhere she goes. Her enthusiasm and dedication to her work are infectious, and she has the ability to make those around her just as excited about her designs as she is.
Not only is Stepfani fluent in the world of marketing, but her education in business makes her well-versed in the general business process as well. She is certified in Lean Six Sigma, which provides her with an understanding of how to implement, perform, interpret, and apply various methodologies to improve a company’s overall performance.
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 few years 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 has supported 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, she has served for many years as a University of New Hampshire PD&T faculty member.
In the Summer 2023, Lisa passed on the ownership of Yoga 4 Classrooms to Dr. Sarah Kirk. Although she has since started a new career, she enjoys a part-time role with the company as Consultant & Trainer. In addition, she continues to serve her community as School Board Director of the Southern Maine school district in which she and her family reside.