Using Mindfulness/Contemplative Practices to Help Students Focus in Mathematics Classrooms
Can using mindfulness/contemplative practices help students become mindful, focused, and present in the mathematics classroom? In this study, mindfulness/contemplative practices were used in the mathematics classroom to determine if students were encouraged to be mindful, focused, and present or engaged in problem solving. During class time, students engaged in the following 2 contemplative practices: a “Mindful Minute of Deep Breathing” and “Beholding the Mathematics”. The one minute of mindful Deep Breathing took place usually at the beginning of class. Then, during a regular class period, students used Beholding to look more deeply at topics, probe questions, and investigate answers to questions. The survey responses indicated that the mindfulness/contemplative practices were very useful in the mathematics classroom to help students to be mindful (both inside and outside of the classroom), focus on the mathematics taught, and be present or engaged in the problem solving.