A new ClassDojo study of 1,000 U.S. families and 900 U.S. teachers analyzed data from a massive mindfulness survey conducted in March this year. ClassDojo is a communication platform for teachers, students and parents. The content indicated in your latest report is derived from more than 180 countries and 95% of pre-K-8 schools in the USA.
Participants were interviewed about their views on courses implemented in schools that can help young students better combat stress and anxiety, particularly by using mindfulness exercises as opposed to traditional psychiatric treatment.
How common are mental health problems among young children?
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 7.1% of children (only about 4 million) between the ages of 3-17 were diagnosed with anxiety and nearly two million of this same demographic was diagnosed with depression. These disorders usually appear in unison, in fact, 78% of children who suffer from depression have anxiety as well. The CDC also reports an increase in these disorders in youth:
“Having been diagnosed with anxiety or depression at any time” among children aged 6 to 17 years increased from 5.4% in 2003 to 8% in 2007 and to 8.4% in 2011–2012.
“Having been diagnosed with anxiety” increased from 5.5% in 2007 to 6.4% in 2011-2012.
“Never having been diagnosed with depression” has not changed between 2007 (4.7%) and 2011-2012 (4.9%). ”
The conclusions of the March edition of the ClassDojo report reflect the trend just above. Ninety-eight percent of teachers in the most recent details said that at least some of their students expressed anxiety about school life in particular.
Many psychologists recommend anchoring techniques to lessen the effects of anxiety. The act of focusing awareness and fully recognizing feelings and emotions in the present is referred to as mindfulness. When faced with impending anxiety, inquire about your agency. Try to locate your pulse without touching it, inhale and exhale and examine each passing emotion.
Sixty-seven percent of parents and 64% of teachers said that learning to alleviate feelings of stress and anxiety is just as important as schoolwork. Thirty-two percent of parents and 26% of teachers believed it was really more important.
Parents who took responsibility for practicing mindfulness exercises in their own home reported a wide range of benefits. Sixty-four percent of parents found that their children were better at handling and discerning their emotions. Forty-three percent said their son was calmer and less anxious. Thirty-nine percent had a greater focus, 35% noted that their child was happier overall, and 32% felt that their child was more empathic.
Ninety-seven percent of teachers agreed that introducing mindfulness at an early age is important for overall growth and development, even though not all individualistic members of that percentage think it is more important than school work.
An additional 92% of teachers would be interested in providing a mindfulness course in their district, even though only 10% of schools actually offer one. Seventy-nine percent of parents insist on practicing mindfulness with their child at home, 52% of whom spend up to 15 minutes a night doing this.