Will the introduction of a weekly mindfulness journal promote individual self-regulation in primary aged children?
The Scottish Government clearly outlines that the health and wellbeing of children should be a priority in Scottish Education. The SHANARRI indicators demonstrate the importance for a child to be healthy, safe, achieving, nurtured, active, respected, responsible, and included. The learning and teaching in the Scottish Curriculum for Excellence is used to support children to achieve each indicator. Mental, emotional, social, and physical wellbeing are a crucial area in the curricular experiences and outcomes (Scottish Government 2008).
In my teaching practice, I have recognised that children can struggle to use appropriate strategies to regulate their emotions. The inability to regulate emotions, can directly impact a child’s mental wellbeing (Pekrun, R., 2014). Consequently, social, or emotional barriers would limit a pupil’s ability to learn efficiently and limit their access to the curriculum (Cremin and Arthur, 2014). Therefore, it is necessary that children are supported to learn regulation strategies to support their mental wellbeing.
Mindfulness-Based Interventions (MBIs) have been evidenced to show benefits for a children’s mental wellbeing. It has been shown to increase a child’s life satisfaction and positive outlooks (Amundsen, R et al 2020). Increasing efforts to support children’s emotional and wellbeing within the classroom has led to an increase of mindfulness-based interventions in a classroom setting. However, there is limited guidance on how to effectively utilise this within the classroom (Mazza-Davies, L.L., 2015)
The aim of the enquiry is to investigate whether a weekly mindful journal would promote individual self-regulation. Children will be given a way to express their feelings and emotions while reflecting on how they regulate their emotions. The hypothesis is that pupils in the enquiry will be influenced to use self-regulation strategies. Accordingly, children will become aware of their own emotions and how they can most effectively regulate them. It is hoped that this would improve the children’s emotional wellbeing.