St Mary’s Anglican Girls’ students find calm and focus in meditation program


Tina Higgins, Lily Sickinghe, Nadia Thavaseelan, Gemma Musk and Maia Rhodes.
Tina Higgins, Lily Sickinghe, Nadia Thavaseelan, Gemma Musk and Maia Rhodes.

ST Mary’s Anglican Girls’ School staff said the school’s new mindfulness and meditation program made junior school students more calm and focused in the classroom.

The program was launched this year as part of the Health and Wellness curriculum at the Karrinyup-based school.

Positive education teacher Tina Higgins said children, like adults, needed time to stay still throughout their busy day.

“We began these meditation sessions by learning about our breathing, our posture and having a focus point, something to look at,” she said.

“It is our hope that by offering such classes and incorporating meditation and mindfulness activities as part of their daily practice, the children will develop the skills to pay greater attention and become more focused, and in turn, help them in the classroom to plan, reason and problem-solve better.”

Year 2 teacher Emma Gerloff said the classes mainly focused on relaxation activities and practising mindfulness techniques.

“By introducing these classes before school and during some break times we give students the opportunity to find a place of calm amidst their busy days, offering the opportunity to learn some useful life skills in relaxation and mindfulness,” she said.

Junior school psychologist Joanne Wilkinson said the program helped girls learn the value of taking time off and ‘staying in the zone’.

“Such skills may help with their sustained focus on tasks, reduce anxiety levels and focus on increasing their personal well-being, overall happiness and resilience,” she said.

“Many of our girls have reported that the strategies are helping them to sleep.”