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Behavioral Impacts of a Mindfulness Pilot Intervention for Elementary School Students

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Elementary school students in today's urban classrooms face many life circumstances at home and in their communities that contribute to stress and coping needs. These stressors are often brought into the classroom, which impact learning, behaviors, and overall academic performance. Mindfulness has been used in classroom settings, particularly with older children and adolescents to help with behavioral and academic outcomes in school. The purpose of this pilot study was to test a 10-week Mindfulness program that was integrated daily at the morning homeroom check-in with a classroom of 4th graders, and compared to a matched comparison classroom. Teachers provided pre-intervention and post-intervention data on student behavior and academic performance; students gave qualitative feedback about the program. While there were no significant differences on the Mindfulness measures, teachers reported significant differences in prosocial behaviors, emotional regulation, and academic performance within group and across comparison groups. Students also reported high satisfaction with the curriculum and gave examples of how they used Mindfulness for emotional regulation and in classroom. Findings support the use of Mindfulness in urban classroom settings as a feasible option for students to help with personal stress and coping, as well as emotional and behavior regulation in schools and at home.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2016

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  • Education publishes original investigations and theoretical papers dealing with worthwhile innovations in learning, teaching, and education. Preference is given to innovations in the school — proposed or actual — and theoretical or evaluative. Papers concern all levels and every area of education and learning. Education is primarily concerned with teacher preparation in all of its many aspects.
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