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J Sch Psychol. 2014 Jun;52(3):263-78. doi: 10.1016/j.jsp.2014.03.002. Epub 2014 Apr 27.

A randomized controlled pilot trial of classroom-based mindfulness meditation compared to an active control condition in sixth-grade children.

Author information

1
Brown University Contemplative Studies Initiative, USA; Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Brown University Medical School, USA. Electronic address: Willoughby_Britton@Brown.edu.
2
Brown University Contemplative Studies Initiative, USA.
3
Brown University Contemplative Studies Initiative, USA; Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, USA.
4
Brown University Contemplative Studies Initiative, USA; Mind & Life Institute, USA.
5
Brown University Contemplative Studies Initiative, USA; Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, Brown University Medical School, USA.
6
Brown University Contemplative Studies Initiative, USA; Moses Brown School, USA.

Abstract

The current study is a pilot trial to examine the effects of a nonelective, classroom-based, teacher-implemented, mindfulness meditation intervention on standard clinical measures of mental health and affect in middle school children. A total of 101 healthy sixth-grade students (55 boys, 46 girls) were randomized to either an Asian history course with daily mindfulness meditation practice (intervention group) or an African history course with a matched experiential activity (active control group). Self-reported measures included the Youth Self Report (YSR), a modified Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, and the Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Measure -Revised. Both groups decreased significantly on clinical syndrome subscales and affect but did not differ in the extent of their improvements. Meditators were significantly less likely to develop suicidal ideation or thoughts of self-harm than controls. These results suggest that mindfulness training may yield both unique and non-specific benefits that are shared by other novel activities.

KEYWORDS:

Children; Contemplative education; Mindfulness meditation; Pre-adolescent; School; Social and emotional learning

PMID:
24930819
PMCID:
PMC4060047
DOI:
10.1016/j.jsp.2014.03.002
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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