They say that kids are like farts because people only like their own, which must make it really hard for teachers to deal with upwards of 30 them at once. That’s why schools have detentions (and bathrooms). But research suggests detentions are an ineffective form of discipline, so what’s an educator to do? According to one Baltimore school, the answer is to breath.
At least that’s what Robert W. Coleman Elementary School did when they replaced detention with a Mindful Moment Room for meditation, which surprisingly, is not code for naps. The school created the room, filled with lamps, decorations, plush pillows, and whatever else Enya’s into, with the help of the nonprofit Holistic Life Foundation (HLF). When a kid is being a real piece of work, they’re sent to the room, where they engage in practices like deep breathing, because they can’t be expected to participate in circle time when they’re not centered.
You could assume that if kids actually liked meditation they’d eventually catch on and start misbehaving on purpose, but since creating the Mindful Moment Room the school suspensions have dropped to zero. It’s not exactly silent meditation — the room is staffed, and counselors talk with kids about what happened, which perhaps explains why there aren’t more repeat offenders. Still, a growing body of research shows that mindfulness programs reduce depression, increase focus, and may even be effective in treating autism, and it’s could make you a better parent too. Hell, even Daniel Tiger is into it, and that guy is already chiller than ice cubes in Antarctica.