As educators and policy makers are questioning traditional education models as being effective, a number of teachers and administrators are taking initiative to implement new concepts in their schools and classrooms. A number of these approaches have been outlined or mentioned in other blog posts; in continuing with this scope of new approaches, I’d like to shine light on one of these particular method: teaching mindfulness.
Highly unconventional by traditional K-12 models, mindfulness education absolutely holds promise in improving education. Practices range from meditation, to yoga, to teaching students to understand and correctly label their emotions, to exercises such as having children tighten and relax fists, arms, etc. The philosophy underlying the practicality is in the common complaint that children (particularly in younger years) fidget, and have a hard time paying attention. Backing the argument for mindfulness implementation is that attention is a skill; as opposed to merely an inherent ability. If we teach students how to utilize, develop and sharpen their attention, the benefits are sure to carry over into their overall academic performance.
Sure enough, the results alone speak for the efficiency of these practices and incorporating them into classrooms.
For more reading on this topic: http://www.gisc.org/gestaltreview/documents/TeachingMindfulnesstoChildren.pdf