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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Visitacion Valley Middle School

Grades 6-8 | San Francisco, CA

Infographic: Meditation in Schools Across America

As a growing body of research points to positive outcomes from meditation in schools, programs are spreading across the country.
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The Teachers' Rating Scale of Social Competence is incorrectly attributed to Schonert-Reichl & Miller 2005; it should be attributed to Schonert-Reichl & Lawlor 2010.

Infographic: Maili Holiman

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Samer Rabadi's picture
Samer Rabadi
Online Community Manager

Emily, it looks like Lancaster, PA is the place to go. According to the NY Times, "...the school district with possibly the best experience has been Lancaster, Pa., where mindfulness is taught in 25 classes a week at eight schools." You can find the reference here: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/16/us/16mindful.html

George Ross Elementary is mentioned specifically in the article.

Brian Sztabnik's picture
Brian Sztabnik
AP Literature teacher from Miller Place, NY

I just read 10% Happier, the memoir of ABC anchor Dan Harris. Aside from providing his story as a journalist, he explains how he stumbled upon meditation. The book then becomes more of a self-help guide and Dan offers practical advice on how meditation and mindfulness can make one 10% Happier. It has me intrigued and I'm looking to experiment with this practice and do further reading. I would also like to teach my students about the scientific benefits of meditation, and have them try it, yet I fear their prejudices and judgements. Any advice on how to approach this on the high school level?

Samer Rabadi's picture
Samer Rabadi
Online Community Manager

Brian, there's been a recent wave of interest in introducing mindfulness into schools. You might want to check out this article from Greater Good that looks at 4 relatively recent studies (from 2013): http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/article/item/research_round_up_school_ba.... In each case, the results were promising.

Earlier in the conversation, Laura Thomas recommended a resource. You can also check out Mindful Schools. I've not tried them out, but I understand that they provide online classes. Their website is: http://www.mindfulschools.org.

Emily's picture

Thank you so much! I will be sure to look up this article as well as the school.

Susan Dreyer Leon's picture

Hi Brian, you might also want to look at .b,( http://mindfulnessinschools.org/what-is-b/) A group called Inward Bound Meditation or ibme (http://ibme.info/) and Mindful Schools (http://www.mindfulschools.org/). All of these organizations are working hard on developing great quality curriculum and meditation opportunities for teens. I think as the field evolves, we are learning that different approaches work better for different age groups, and of course, different contexts. Another resource I really like is Still Quiet Place from Dr. Amy Saltzman. Her website has excellent meditation activities for kids, teens and adults (http://www.stillquietplace.com/). Finally, we here at Antioch University New England have been running a year-long fully on-line certificate program in Mindfulness for Educators, for those who are exploring mindfulness work for themselves and their teaching or who may have done some of these other trainings and now want to add an academic component to their resume. For those who are interested in potentially doing research and teaching in the field, we also have an M.Ed in Mindfulness for Educators. For more information you can visit www.antiochne.edu or email me at sdreyerleon@antioch.edu

Brian Sztabnik's picture
Brian Sztabnik
AP Literature teacher from Miller Place, NY

Thanks Susan. I believe that mindfulness can be a rewarding experience for students and offer them an outlet from the digital hive that they inhabit. Yet the question that still remains for me as a high school teacher is one of context. Where should one situate a mindfulness unit? Does it belong in physical education? Art or music? Or is it something that should exist in a homeroom period or mentoring program? Your thoughts?

Harmeet Kaur's picture

Hi! I work in an Experiential school in India and Silence Time is observed twice a day (once in the morning, to mark the beginning of a great day ahead and the other at the end of the day in the afternoon to introspect the good things and learnings that happened that day). It is a great practice and followed judiciously across K-12.

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