Within the past 10 years, there has been an increased interest in providing teachers with mindfulness training. This is due largely in part to the amount of stress that K-12 teachers report as a result of the profession and the research proposing that practicing mindfulness helps one cope with stress and offers the potential to promote one's well-being.
This qualitative study explores the intersection of mindfulness and K-12 teaching. Four K-12 teachers who self-identified as mindfulness practitioners were interviewed, and their lived experiences as mindfulness practitioners and teachers are explored throughout this study. Through in-depth, phenomenologically-based interviews, the participants' life histories in relation to becoming mindfulness practitioners and teachers are uncovered, as well as their experiences as mindfulness practitioners in the classroom, and their reflections upon what is means to be a mindfulness practitioner and a teacher.
For the participants in this study, they believed their mindfulness practices helped them cope with the demands of teaching. The participants also viewed mindfulness practices as a pedagogical tool for promoting their students' social and emotional well-being. As one of the first studies to explore teachers who have personal mindfulness practices and how those practices transfer or do not transfer into their professional experiences, it adds teachers' voices to the mindfulness in education phenomena.