The mindful approach to reading engagement and achievement
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A quasi-experimental comparison study took place over the course of six weeks in a special education resource room in a rural Wisconsin school district. The purpose of the study was to determine the potential benefits of using a mindfulness program prior to individualized reading intervention. Students received 1:1 individualized reading instruction designed to work on specific IEP (individualized education plan) goals and objectives. For the initial three weeks of the study, students were presented with reading instruction as usual. For the final three weeks, students were given the option to participate in a mindfulness activity prior to beginning reading intervention. Mindfulness activities were pulled from the Cosmic Kids website and included yoga, guided meditation, deep breathing, and positive affirmations. Each week, data were collected using progress monitoring measures for words read correctly per minute (WCPM), comprehension, and attention redirection. Analysis of the final data points suggested that mindful practices can have significant positive effects on elementary-aged students’ engagement and achievement in reading intervention.