Celebrating Goldie Hawn and MindUP

What do Meryl Streep, Kyle Maclachlan, Kurt Russell, certain players from the worlds of Washington and Wall Street, and I all have in common?

We all had the great honor to be together at the Metropolitan Club at New York’s Central Park late last month, celebrating Goldie Hawn’s work in trying to bring social and emotional learning to schools in America through the MindUP program.

MindUP features lessons to improve behavior and learning for children that, the foundation says, can fit easily into any schedule and can be implemented with minimal preparation. The program provides children with emotional and cognitive tools to help them manage emotions and behaviors, reduce stress, sharpen concentration, and increase empathy and optimism.

At the event, Hawn told how MindUP was born from her inspiration to work with the fear that the events of 9/11 seemed to be breeding in the nation’s schoolchildren. She made an empassioned and eloquent plea for the importance of working with children’s emotions as the best means of fostering better learning and citizenship. She and Kurt Russell also danced up a storm, while Kate Hudson dazzled one and all, and when she introduced her mom her short speech about raising children were all the more pointed since she appeared in a very advanced state of pregnancy.

In this video below, a talk she gave along with Dr. Dan Siegel at the 2009 TEDMed conference, Hawn offers the same background on the birth of MindUP and the rationale behind it that she reprised at the Metropolitan Club benefit. See if you’re not moved by it.