Robert W. Coleman Elementary School in Baltimore MD has been doing something different when students act out: offering meditation. Instead of punishing disruptive kids or sending them to the principal's office, the Baltimore school has something called the Mindful Moment Room instead. The room looks nothing like your standard windowless detention room. Instead, it's filled with lamps, decorations, and plush purple pillows. Misbehaving kids are encouraged to sit in the room and go through practices like breathing or meditation, helping them calm down and re-center. They are also asked to talk through what happened. A study suggests mindful meditation could improve a person's attention span and focus.
The Mindful Moment Room isn't the only way Robert W. Coleman Elementary has been encouraging its kids. The program also helps mentor and tutor the kids, as well as teach them about the environment.The children help clean up local parks, build gardens, and visit nearby farms. they even teach kids to be co-teachers, letting them run the yoga sessions.
Oh, and by the way, the schools are seeing a tangible benefit from this program, too. Kirk Philips, the Holistic Me coordinator at Robert W. Coleman Elementary said there have been exactly zero suspensions last year and so far this year. Meanwhile, nearby Patterson Park High School, which also uses the mindfulness programs, said suspension rates dropped and attendance increased as well.