Self-esteem and school adjustment of children in the lower grades of primary school, the beginning stage of school life, have a close relationship with development of personality, mental health and
characters of children. Therefore, the present study aimed to verify the effect of school-based the Meditation program on children in the lower grades of primary school, as a personality education
program. The result showed that the experimental group with application of The Meditation program had significant improvements in self-esteem and school adjustment, compared to the control group without the application. In conclusion, since the study provides significant evidence that the intervention of The Meditation program had positive effects on self-esteem and school adjustment of children in the early stage of primary school, it is suggested to actively employ The Meditation as a school-based meditation program for mental health promotion of children in the early school ages, the stage of formation of personalities and habits.
This study is projected to give assistance to children’s school life and further to set a direction to establish a strategy for promoting mental health of primary school students, by verifying the effects of the ‘ Meditation program’ on self-esteem and school adjustment of primary school students.
A school selected for the study is N primary school located in a dense residential apartment area in K city. The parents of N school tend to have high educational qualifications and dual incomes, which means that they belong to above-average financial status of middle class. For the study participants, the experimental group was composed of 25 students, a whole class of the third grade of this primary school, from March 2012 to July 2012. The randomly selected control group included 25 students. None of the participants had any current medical or mental disorders that justified exclusion from the course, and none had previous experience of meditation.
The experimental group who participates in the Meditation program will mark higher in the self-esteem scores immediately and at 5 weeks after the program than will the comparison group.
For the experimental group, it increased from 2.32 (SD=0.21) of pre-test to 2.45 (SD=0.24) of post-test, and further to 2.57 (SD=0.22) at the follow-up test. For the comparison group, it was 2.28 (SD=0.24) at the pre-test, 2.29 (SD=0.29) at the post-test, and 2.29 (SD=0.29) at the follow-up test. It remained nearly unchanged. As a result of repeated measures analysis of variances analysis, a significantly conspicuous difference was observed statistically, between the experimental group and the control group (F=7.516, p=0.009). A significant difference was observed from along with time passage (F=5.396, p=0.008) and from the interaction between the group and the passage of time (F=4.798, p=0.013). Therefore, hypothesis 1 was supported. From this, it was evident that the aspects of change of self-esteem were different by groups along the passage of time
The experimental group who participates in the The Meditation program will mark higher in the school adjustment scores immediately and 5 weeks after the program than will the comparison group.
For the experimental group, it increased from 2.37 (SD=0.26) at the pre-test to 2.52 (SD=0.27) and further to 2.57 (SD=0.25). For the comparison group, it slightly decreased from 2.29 (SD=0.27) at the pre-test to 2.24 (SD=0.29), and increased to 2.33 (SD=0.32). From the repeated measures analysis of variances, a significantly conspicuous difference was evident between the experimental group and the control group (F=7.738, p=0.008). Significantly conspicuous differences were statistically evident from along with time (F=8.010, p=0.001) and from the interaction between the group and the time passage (F=5.694, p=0.005). Therefore, hypothesis 2 was supported. This showed that the aspects of change of school adjustment were different by groups along the passage of time
In conclusion, the study showed that the The Meditation intervention had positive influences on self-esteem and on school adjustment for the lower grade students of primary school despite of a small sample size. Therefore, we suggest employing The Meditation as a school-based meditation program for mental health promotion of children for formation of their personality and habits. Based on the results of this study, we suggest the following. First, due to the small sample size, it was not possible to draw generalized conclusions. Therefore, future researches could implement this program using a larger sample size, i.e. a larger number of students. Second, this study relied entirely upon paper-and-pencil self-reports and did not include physiological measures of research variables. Therefore, future researches could include multidimensional outcome measures, which capture physiological or behavioral changes.