For kids at Robert W. Coleman Elementary School in Baltimore, Maryland, the answer is yes. This school has recently been implementing an after school program, called Holistic Me, which focuses on providing high quality yoga and mediation to students. Instead of sending misbehaving kids to detention, they send them to meditation. Has it worked? So far so good! The school has reported zero suspensions last year and this year. A nearby high school that also implements this program says that their suspension rates have dropped and their attendance has increased.
Giving children (and adults) the tools to deal with stress, anxiety and frustration can be a huge benefit to themselves and those around them. We teach our children manners, math, and reading, but often don’t talk about how to handle negative feelings, actions and emotions. Although talk therapy plays an important role in helping the social and emotional behavior of children, mind body exercises like yoga and mediation can help a child go deeper into themselves to heal and calm themselves.
As a mother, I know it’s not easy to meditate. When do we have the time?! However, according to the Mayo Clinic, meditation can help with conditions including depression, sleep disorders, anxiety, and chronic pain. So it’s worth it for us to take the time and learn to meditate. For the best meditation apps, check out Healthline’s article: The Best Meditation Apps of 2016.
My daughter was recently having a difficult morning with her brother, so I walked her into another room and told her we were going to meditate together. She kind of said “yeah whatever” but I stayed the course. I initiated some deep breathing techniques as we sat next to each other. After a few deep breathes, I asked her to continue to meditate and then to come back to the group when she felt ready and calm enough to have a positive morning. She did just that. She re-entered the room a new person. It was great because there was no disciplining, no raising of voices, and I felt calmer after the few deep breathes as well.
If your child has a hard time relaxing into his or her body, you may want to give acupuncture a try. Many of my pediatric patients’ parents tell me their children are never so relaxed as when they are receiving acupuncture. Wouldn’t it be great if the next time your child misbehaves, you can both take a few minutes to meditate together? During meditation, your child may realize what he or she needs to feel, act and do better.
#kidsmeditation #acupuncture #kidshealth