A Qualitative Exploration of Primary School Students’ Experience and Utilisation of Mindfulness

Bavani Bannirchelvam, Karen L Bell, Shane Christopher Costello

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review


Despite the increasing utilisation of mindfulness-based interventions in children, research investigating the impact of these interventions in children is still in its infancy. One significant gap in the literature is the general omission of the child’s voice in how they experience and benefit from mindfulness-based intervention. Therefore, the present study explored children’s experiences of a mindfulness-based intervention, as well as why and how they utilised mindfulness techniques. A semi-structured interview was undertaken with eight upper primary school-aged students after completion of a classroom-based eight-session mindfulness intervention. Thematic analysis elicited 11 key themes across the three research questions. Students generally liked the mindfulness-based intervention but preferred experiential over passive program components. Students utilised mindfulness techniques for emotion regulation, typically by focusing on their breathing, shifting their attention to the present, and using a smartphone application. These findings provide insights into factors contributing to program engagement and children’s use of mindfulness as a strategy for emotion regulation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)304-316
Number of pages13
JournalContemporary School Psychology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jul 2017


  • Mindfulness
  • Children
  • Classroom
  • Child's voice
  • Emotion regulation

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