Friday, September 23, 2016

Spare the meditation, spoil the child?

When boys and girls misbehave in class at the Robert Coleman Elementary School in west Baltimore, Maryland, they don't get punished or sent to the principal's office. Instead, they go to the "mindful moment room" where they can decompress through meditation. Since the meditation room was opened, the school has issued no suspensions -- not even one. The program was organized by the Holistic Life Foundation,  a Baltimore-based non-profit dedicated to helping kids in underserved neighborhoods.

Research shows meditation relieves stress and increases productivity. It's also an anger management tool. Andres Gonzalez, one of the project organizers, says stressed parents yell at kids at home and then kids come to school stressed and yell at each other. Meditation can stop this trickle-down process. According to Gonzalez, "We've had parents tell us, 'I came home the other day stressed out, and my daughter said, Hey, mom, you need to sit down. I need to teach you how to breathe.'"

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