Meditation Vs. Detention: Switching Punishment For Mindfulness Exercises Better For School Kids

By Amanda Moore, Parent Herald November 16, 04:00 am
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Children doing meditation exercises are said to be more inclined to resolve conflicts peaceful and do better in school.
(Photo : Amanda Edwards/Getty Images )

Meditation has brought better results than detention as attested by experts. Since switching towards mindfulness practices instead of punishing school kids who act out in class, the Robert W. Coleman Elementary School in Baltimore has seen favorable improvements among problematic students.

According to New York Magazine, the school has seen a big drop in suspension since the meditation program was introduced four years ago. Instead of sending students to after-school detentions, they are asked to do meditation or yoga exercises when they misbehave.

School officials have also noticed that the students have grown to handle conflicts peacefully since meditation has helped them become less impulsive. Class attendance is also up as suspensions have gone down.

The Baltimore school partners with Holistic Life Foundation in teaching the students the meditation and mindfulness techniques. In fact, the school has an actual program that's not only limited to problem students. Over 120 kids are participating in regular yoga, reflection and meditation exercises, which are held after school.

Others educational institutions have been following the Baltimore school initiative in replacing detention with meditation. NY Mag also cited a scientific study published in the National Institutes of Health that showed improved behavior and academic performance among Bay Area elementary students who are encouraged to meditate in school.

Sending kids to meditation instead of detention is believed to more proactive in dealing with what really bothers the children to the point that they misbehave. Meditation allows school kids to reflect on themselves, which could bring about enlightenment. On the other hand, detention -- where teachers usually leave children to write down their mistakes, or finish their homework, or stare blankly into space -- does not have any bearing to affect behavioral change.

The suspension and expulsion of students also bear negative effects. "In addition to not allowing a child to learn at his or her best, these practices create anxiety that can cause more disruptive behavior," Kristen Johnson of the National Association for the Education of Young Children said, according to CityLab.

Is your child's school still enforcing detention? Would you rather they introduce meditation techniques? Talk to us in the comments!

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