Meditation replaces detention at US schools

Instead of dishing out punishment to disobedient children – a school in Balitmore has decided to use mindfulness and meditation instead

Many of us may recall days in school where teachers either hit us or sent us to detention for bad behaviour. Whether any of those methods work is open to debate. However, with the advent of modern parenting tips such as putting children in the naughty corner instead of administering physical punishment, schools in the US are trying other ways of instilling dicipline in students.

Instead of punishing children for their transgressions, a school in Baltimore is using the time to make children meditate and do yoga.

According to a report by PBS, there is proof that punishing children harshly doesn’t work as well as the proponents of harsh punishment think. In fact, they may not actually do anything to improve  behaviour in a child.

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The programme is called Mindful Moment Room and the children practice their breathing and work with a therapist who helps them deal with their emotions in a constructive way. This also teaches the little ones how to handle stress and anxiety which many South African’s tend to deal with in adulthood.

According to Open Culture, the children who were part of the programme were from Kindergarten. The study showed that pre-school to grade five children in South Africa were better behaved and showed volatility. The children were less likely to lash out and be disruptive in class. They were better able to use their words to resolve conflict.

The founders of the programme, are brothers Ali and Atman Smith and their colleague Andres Gonzales. They created a system that doesn’t add additional trauma to children who are potentially already traumatised. Instead, it makes them mindful and resilient.

Speaking to CNBC, the brothers say the violence in the community gave them the idea to help the children escape the stresses like drug abuse. They hope that the children will learn how to resolve conflicts and contribute positively to the community.

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In a previous interview with DESTINY, Sarah Braithwaite, a Corporate and Life Coach explained how mindfulness makes people more resilient.

“People who handle setbacks or challenges in a more resilient manner are usually those who are emotionally and mentally strong. They process and make sense of the reality of the situation they’re faced with,” she explained.

Aside from regulating the children’s emotional state, the programme has helpe the young ones improve concentration and memory, which puts them in good stead to succeed with their lessons.

Additional reporting:  Open Culture