Document Type

Thesis

Date of Degree Completion

Spring 2018

Degree Name

Education Specialist (Ed.S.)

Department

School Psychology

Committee Chair

Dr. Meaghan Nolte

Second Committee Member

Dr. Richard Marsicano

Third Committee Member

Dr. Fred Washburn

Abstract

ABSTRACT

THE IMPACT OF MINDFULNESS ON STUDENT SUCCESS

by

Casey D. Nightingale

May 2018

As schools are adopting the whole child approach, it is important to examine how the approach impacts academic success. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of a school-based mindfulness curriculum on student reading scores and classroom engagement. Using a multiple baseline design, this study examined the rate of improvement in reading scores and academic engagement in elementary students receiving a mindfulness curriculum. The curriculum was introduced in addition to the regular curriculum in 15-minute lessons twice a week. Rate of improvement was examined utilizing curriculum-based measures, while student engagement was evaluated through classroom observation methods. This study found that the following the implementation of a mindfulness curriculum oral reading fluency increased an average of three words correct per minute, retell fluency an average of three words per minute. Furthermore, student engagement during reading instruction increased from 52% to 75% in group one, and from 38% to 73% in group two. At maintenance, five weeks after Group One completed the mindfulness curriculum, and two weeks after Group Two completed the curriculum, oral reading fluency increased nine words per minute from baseline mean in Group One, and four words per minute in group two. Additionally, engagement for Group One increased from 52% at baseline to 65% at maintenance. Group Two’s engagement increased from 38% at baseline to 92% at maintenance. While there was a positive directionality to the group reading scores after introduction of the intervention, due to limitations of the study, causation cannot be attributed to the mindfulness curriculum.

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