A Guide to Mindfulness Education in Schools

20/10/2020

Since a long time, mindfulness has been a widely discussed topic amongst the academicians and researchers. In the recent years, however, this has started becoming a mainstream phenomenon. The growing popularity of mindfulness can be attributed to its simplicity and low cost.

Not so long ago, the idea of teaching mindfulness concepts to school children would have sounded crazy. However, numerous experts now suggest that this concept is ideally suited for all types of educational settings. This is why it is becoming increasingly important for teachers to understand how mindfulness can be incorporated effectively in the existing educational setup.

Mindfulness Education and its Goal:

Mindfulness refers to the act of paying attention to the present moment in a non-judgmental manner. Mindfulness education may be defined as the inclusion of mindfulness in education along with the principles, theories, and practices of mindful meditation. The primary goal of including mindfulness in education is to help students become familiarised with self-awareness, mindful communication, empathy, application of mindfulness skill to daily life, and help them calm and focus the mind using these skills.

Teaching Mindfulness in Schools:

In recent decades, the potential inclusion of mindfulness as a subject in school has been a popular research topic. As a result, there is no shortage of available information on how it can be applied in schools to benefit the system.

Mentioned below are some suggestions for schools interested in including mindfulness in their curriculum.

  • Teachers and staffs should receive training from professional mindfulness instructors so that they can reinforce the lessons in the right manner.
  • Teachers should encourage their students by showing complete support for the mindfulness program.
  • Parents are to be involved in the process so that certain aspects of mindfulness can be practiced at home.
  • Instead of an intense, all-at-once approach, create a long-term method because this will allow students to learn better.
  • While designing mindful activity, focus on striking a balance between structure and variety.
  • Be prepared to accept the fact that some mindfulness exercises and lessons will not work in the classroom because of constraints related to space and resources.

Benefits of Mindfulness in the Classroom:

Recent studies have revealed that mindfulness education can have a positive impact on children and adolescents in many different ways.

  • Allows children to effectively manage stress and quickly work through it.
  • Several health benefits are imparted by frequent mindfulness practice.
  • Mindfulness programs can improve resilience to stress and as well as cognitive performance.
  • Improves attention and ability to focus.
  • Better emotional reactivity management.
  • Encourages strategic thinking, planning, and other higher-order abilities.
  • Reduces mind-wandering and enhances memory and concentration.
  • Helps reduce or mitigate ADHD symptoms.

Components of a Mindfulness Curriculum:

Typically, a mindfulness curriculum for schools should be delivered in the form of frequent but short sessions covering both the principles as well as the practice of mindfulness. The curriculum may include concepts such as mindfulness, meditation, awareness, and acceptance. It should also cover exercises like mindful breathing, the body scan, mindful awareness of the senses and other mindfulness content such as relaxation imagery, guided meditations, videos, written instructions, etc.

At Willow Bee Early Learning Centre, we have a team of dedicated and qualified teachers and educators working relentlessly to bringing out the best in every child by encouraging and embracing their individual talents and personalities. If you want to know more about mindfulness education for your child, please contact us right away.