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Mindfulness and Mental Health

As most educators and parents are seeing, this historic pandemic is having a large effect on children and students of all ages. The current pandemic has upended in-person education, disrupted our daily routines, and  has isolated many of us from friends and family.  

A survey of 1000 students between the ages of 16 and 19, found that mental health is their top‐ranked concern for the future. The study was conducted the week of October 5, 2020.  Also of great concern was education. According to the results, 59% say Covid‐19 has negatively impacted the quality of their school work. 49% say it has negatively impacted the quality of educational instruction they’re receiving. 

One way to address the problem is the use of mindfulness in both face-to-face and virtual classrooms. Mindfulness is a way of thinking that promotes moment-to-moment attention to yourself and the environment. For young children, practicing mindfulness helps improve their Executive Function (EF) skills as well as emotion regulation and pro-social skills such as empathy. For older students and young adults, it can improve emotional well-being as well as academic performance. Learn more about mindfulness and how young people are using it to cope with Covid-19 in this recent article from The Hechinger Report.

About the Author:

Carrie FruinCarrie Fruin is the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for Reflection Sciences and holds an Education Specialist Degree in the area of Leadership in Digital Transformation. She taught high school science for over 25 years and has worked in higher education building high quality, online professional development programs for teachers. She has a strong belief that all students can learn, and it is through the understanding of Executive Function (EF) skills and their relationship to Social-emotional learning (SEL) that will assist educators in reaching all children and providing them a true foundation for success in life.

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