Think back to your elementary school days. When you were unlucky (read: unruly) enough to receive detention, what was it like? A silent study hall? How much reflection were you able to do, and did you stay out of detention after that?
Robert W. Coleman Elementary School in Baltimore, MD is changing the way its students are disciplined — by offering meditation instead of detention.
Working together with a local nonprofit called Holistic Life Foundation, the school has introduced The Mindful Moment Room, a room filled with lamps, decorations, and plush, purple pillows. Now, when students act out, instead of being issued a detention or sent to the principal's office, they are asked to sit in The Mindful Moment Room to practice breathing and meditation, calm down, and talk through what happened.
"It's amazing," said Kirk Philips, the Holistic Me coordinator at Robert W. Coleman. "You wouldn't think that little kids would meditate in silence. And they do."
The Holistic Life Foundation is no stranger to mindful practices like meditation. For the past 10 years, the organization has coordinated an after-school program called Holistic Me, in which students from Pre-K through the fifth grade practice mindfulness and yoga.
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It's difficult to measure exactly how well the new holistic measures are working, but Philips says that Robert W. Coleman has seen zero suspensions last school year and so far this school year. A nearby high school that also teaches Holistic Life Foundation-based mindfulness has seen a decrease in suspensions and even an increase in attendance.
What do you think? Should all schools adopt policies of meditation? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
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