Students enjoy meditation and nature in LPP class


One of our Japanese teachers has recently discovered a wonderful method of improving focus and behaviour in class, while incorporating cultural learning.

Melissa found that her year 4-5 Japanese LPP (Language Partnership Program) class to be a bit more “roudy” than most. It is a large group of 30 students that seemed to always be talking over one another.

After trying a few behavioural management techniques that weren’t quite as effective as she hoped, Melissa began the unit shinrinyoku. Meaning “forest-bathing”, this is a popular Japanese activity for looking after your health and wellbeing, by just being out in nature and taking in your surroundings.

“Students did a few meditations in class and out in nature. During the meditations, and at other points in class, we practised mindful breathing as a tool to feel better and become calm while in class. Students would breathe in calmly, noticing how their muscles felt, and then breathe out, while relaxing their muscles.

“Today we had a moment in the classroom where students were talking over each other, so I made a clear statement that we will have plenty of group discussion time, but that right now it is time for just one person to speak.

“They respected this fully for the first time, and continued to be respectful during the lesson. I asked them all to spend 30 seconds in silence just thinking about their answer to a question, and they all did.

“At the end of the lesson one student asked me, ‘Can we do more meditation? Because it’s making us behave better’. All of the class seemed to agree with this.

“I was so proud of them because they have improved their behaviour so much, they are aware of what they can do to improve their learning, and they are actively seeking to improve their classroom experiences.”

Last updated: 21 June 2019