There has been a lot of talk lately about mindfulness (yoga and meditation) in the classroom. Research has shown that mindfulness training can help students physically, psychologically and emotionally, as well as helping to improve their academic performance.
While, Health has long been an important subject in schools, many schools are starting to rethink the traditional definition of health to go beyond the physical wellness and incorporate the mental wellness aspect as well. A recent article in The Wall Street Journal looks at the ways schools are expanding their traditional understanding of health. Middle and High School health curriculums are being amended to include topics like mindfulness training, yoga, social justice and food politics, among others.
In the lower elementary levels and even in preschool programs, an influx of yoga programs throughout the country can be seen. Incorporating yoga into the lives of children at a young age can help them focus, concentrate and reduce stress. Additionally yoga encourages self-regulation and executive function which prepares them for the upper grades. You don’t need a yoga instructor to introduce yoga to your children. Children can learn through DVDs and CDs, which can also serve as a great break when the children just need to get up and move.