I believe we need to teach meditation in schools. Kids are under a lot of pressure these days. And later in life the pressure will probably get worse. More and more young people suffer from burnout symptoms. That is why we need to learn the art and skill of meditation at a young age. Keep reading.
When we teach meditation in schools our kids will learn an essential skill that may turn out to be just as important as learning to read and write.
What is the one thing I wish I had learned in school when I was a kid? It has nothing to do with numbers or letters. But it is a skill that would have helped me a lot during my years at school and later in life. I am convinced that – with learning this skill – I would have done even better at home and in school. That is why I believe we need to teach meditation in schools.
The power of daily meditation
I discovered the power of meditation when I was in my thirties. And I have only been meditating daily now – and reaping the benefits – for 1.5 years. Meditation learned me a lot about myself. It has also helped me coping with the daily stress of our busy modern lives.
What if I would have been meditating daily for 10 years now? Or 20? Or even 30?
Still, I had an easy time when I was a kid. Because kids are under a lot more pressure these days. With things like: homework, tests, extremely busy social lives, sports and sometimes problems at home.
Smartphones make things even worse. With the constant messaging and social networking, demanding their attention, destroying their self-images and stealing their precious sleep. They are the first generation to spend their entire adolescence with smartphones. Spending a lot of time online and on social media.
More than a quarter of teens report feeling extreme stress during the school year. Nearly half said they weren’t doing enough or weren’t sure if they were doing enough to manage their stress.
Later in life, the pressure will probably get worse. About one in four students experience burnout problems. And we all know how many people working a job suffer from a burnout these days.
Learning how to find rest and relaxation, being alone with yourself and quieting your brain is essential. But those are skills we all need to learn.
Why don’t we teach meditation in schools?
Teach meditation in schools
Research showed that teaching meditation in schools has positive effects on students’ well-being, social skills and academic skills.
Meditation changes your brain
A while ago they studied the brains of people who had never meditated. They made a brain scan before they participated in an 8-week, 30-minute meditation program. When they compared these with a brain scan they made after the meditation they noticed changes in different brain regions. In particular, thickness increased in certain areas of the brain related to learning, memory, and emotion regulation as well as perspective-taking, empathy, and compassion.
Students who were taught meditation at school reported higher optimism, more positive emotions, stronger self-identity, greater self-acceptance and took better care of their health as well as experiencing reduced anxiety, stress and depression.
The review also showed that meditation helps the social life of students by leading to increases in pro-social behaviour (like helping others) and decreases in anti-social behaviour (like anger and disobedience).
Finally, meditation was found to improve a host of academic and learning skills in students. These included faster information processing, greater focus, more effective working memory, more creativity and cognitive flexibility.