It has long been known that meditation can help calm chil dren down, but new research is helping quantify its benefits for elementary school children. A 2015 study found that fourthand fifthgraders who participated in a fourmonth programme showed improvements in cognitive control, working memory , cognitive flexibility -and better math grades. A recent study recently in `Mindfulness’ found similar improvements in mathematics in fifth graders with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. These investigations illustrate how meditative practices have the potential to change the structure and function of the brain to foster academic success.
Fundamental principles of neuroscience suggest that meditation can have a great impact on cognition when the brain is in its earliest stages of development.This is because the brain develops connections in prefrontal circuits at its fastest rate in childhood. This extra plasticity creates the potential for meditation to have greater impact on executive functioning.
Many parents too report on its benefits. Heather Maurer of Vienna, leads her daughter, Daisy , 9, through visualization techniques and focused breathing exercises three nights a week, and says her daughter has become noticeably better at self-regulating her emotions. When Daisy is upset, she will sit herself down and concentrate on her breathing until she is refocused,.
The meditation seems to act like a `hard reboot’ for his brain, almost instantly resolving mood swings or lessening anger.