Mindfulness in the Classroom

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Contact Information

Organization Information

Project Summary

Research shows that classroom-based mindfulness interventions are associated with improved mental and emotional well-being. At J. Andrew Morrow Primary School, teachers are implementing mindfulness initiatives to improve student well-being. Second grade teachers Sarah Adams and Jenni Lane have spearheaded efforts to improve child wellness through multiple strategies to promote mindfulness and movement in the classroom. In their classroom, they implement four mindfulness strategies: 1. Daily Yoga Practice – Students participate in yoga to take a break from learning, wake their bodies and engage in movement mindfulness. The act of practicing yoga poses encourages students to clear their mind and focus on the effort of the pose. Then they transfer that into their daily life. 2. Guided Meditation for children –Students practice meditating through sitting still, breathing and paying attention to their bodies, thoughts, and space around them 3. Peace Corner – Students access this comfortable space to take an individual mindfulness break 4. Growth Mindset – Students learn self-regulation techniques and communicate positive language to train the brain to learn positivity and awareness

Project Goal

Problem statement: Research shows that with increasing academic demands, students are often stressed, anxious and have difficulty paying attention due to prolonged sitting periods. Goals include: o Improve emotional coping mechanisms o Increase physical activity o Improve focus and attentiveness o Foster positive self-regulation o Develop body and self-awareness o Develop a sense of calmness o Increase confidence and self esteem o Provide a supportive social and emotional learning environment o Increase awareness of one’s actions, relationships, emotions

Promotional Methods

This project is communicated through the following: District Wellness council meetings School administration meetings Teacher meetings With parents via letters home and pictures/posts on ClassDojo Informal teacher communication Collecting student feedback through written reflections

Project Challenges

This program encountered little barriers. However, for schools and teachers looking to replicate, they should begin implementation with simple changes to help students adjust to a new routine. For example, learning one yoga pose per day. Routines and procedures for all activities need to be established and explicitly taught.

Project Results

Each day, students receive an average of four movement breaks (approximately 4 minutes each), one guided meditation (3-6 minutes), and five breathing exercises. Students may also choose to take a 3-minute mindfulness break in the Peace Corner as needed. Teachers notice overall that students show improvements in: Behavior, concentration/focus, positive mindset, readiness to learn, peer relationships, dealing with stress/anxiety, respect for self, others, and school. Students with poor emotional-coping respond positively to mindfulness techniques. They have shown less anger and improved self-awareness and regulation skills.

Organization Type

Academic Institution

Types of Practices

  • K-12 Schools
  • Other

Target Age Ranges

  • Children

Gender(s)

  • All

Race/Ethnicity

  • All

Project Service Type

  • Awareness
  • Counseling
  • Education / Training / Resource Development
  • Prevention

Project Content Area

  • Behavioral Health
  • Health (general)
  • Mental Health
  • Overweight/Obesity
  • Physical Activity

Project/Program Care Team Target Population

  • Behavioral Health Specialists
  • Health Educators

Counties Served

  • Bradford

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