A growing body of research suggests that mindfulness practices - those that promote intentional cultivation of moment-by-moment non-judgmental attention and awareness— reduce psychological distress and increase attention, memory, and learning in children, youth, and adults. Despite these findings, rigorous implementation and evaluation of such interventions in schools are still extremely rare. Researchers from the Johns Hopkins Schools of Education, Medicine, and Public Health will host an interdisciplinary symposium in fall 2014 to synthesize cutting-edge scientific research and showcase what is known – and currently unknown – on mindfulness and learning. Leading scholars will address the following questions:
What is known about the benefits of mindfulness practices? How do mindfulness practices—such as meditation, breathing techniques, and yoga postures—affect brain function, executive functions (e.g., attention, memory), mental health (e.g., anxiety, depression, coping), and overall well-being?
- What do mindfulness practices look like in real-life settings? How is mindfulness applied in educational and clinical settings to address barriers to learning? How do such practices vary across different K-12 groups and populations with special needs (e.g., at-risk, gifted students)?
- What are the next steps in research and evaluation? What are the most fruitful areas for future basic and applied sciences research? What challenges do researchers face in the implementation and measurement of mindfulness interventions? How can they overcome such challenges?
- Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD, Founding Director, Stress Reduction Clinic; Founding Executive Director, Center for Mindfulness in Medicine, Healthcare, & Society, University of Massachusetts, School of Medicine
- Timothy Ryan, U.S. Congressman (Ohio); Author, "A Mindful Nation"
- Richard Davidson, PhD, Waisman Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison
- Adele Diamond, PhD, Department of Psychiatry, University of British Columbia
- Mark Greenberg, PhD, Penn State University
- Patricia Jennings, PhD, Curry School of Education, University of Virginia
- Erica Sibinga, MD, MHS, Johns Hopkins University
- Tamar Mendelson, PhD, Johns Hopkins University
- September 29th, Johns Hopkins University, in Baltimore, MD.
This is a free event open to the public. Space is limited so register early at: http://mindfulnessandlearning.com/