Teaching Mindfulness in School Could Help the Most Vulnerable Students

by ParentCo. May 24, 2016

A research team in Chicago has spent a year studying whether students who are taught to be in touch with their emotions do better academically. And they say the initial results are promising.

(Amanda) Moreno and her team received $3 million, most of it from the U.S. Education Department, to study what is known as “mindfulness” in more than 30 high-poverty Chicago public schools over the course of four years. They are watching approximately 2,000 kindergarten through second-grade students. ...

That focus is important because, if mindfulness proves effective, low-income children of color may stand to benefit disproportionately. Children growing up in poverty are more likely than their affluent peers to be exposed to violence and to experience long-term stress that can derail their academic progress. ...

Moreno is pleased that mindfulness is something the government and Chicago schools are open to studying. Teachers face so much pressure to “go, go, go,” she said, that the fact that the school system and Education Department are recognizing that educators need to focus on children’s inner lives to get anything into them academically is “powerful.” But the practice may find its way into more schools around the country because the nation’s new federal education law asks schools to consider some non-academic measures, such as school climate, in evaluating how students are doing.

Source: Chicago Study Tests Mindfulness in Elementary Schools - The Atlantic



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