9th Reading Forum

Meditation vs. detention article response

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Read my model response below—it is meant to be a model for formatting and length.

Use the following prompts to guide your response:


How do you feel about the article's main claim that giving young students meditation time rather than detention is a positive step?

How might this same idea work or not work for high school students?

Why do we give detentions? Are they just meant to be a punishment? A deterrent, something to prevent students from misbehaving or misbehaving again?

In order to receive credit, your response must include the following:

1) At least one direct quotation from the article to provide evidence for a claim you are making, and

2) A direct reference to someone else's response, either in agreement or disagreement. This reference should mention the student (or teacher) by name and should be included in your own response.


7:20 a.m. Still dark in the hallways, sometimes the interior doors are still locked. Time for morning detention duty. For a couple of weeks during the school year, I, like all of your teachers, have morning detention duty. Contractually, teachers are not required to be in the building until 8:00 a.m., but we have to be here at 7:20 a.m. when we have morning detention duty. We aren't paid extra like we are for other duties like supervising athletic events. It's on these mornings that I wonder why we have detention.

Detention is often synonymous with punishment, but who is being punished? Yes, students have to get up early (or stay late, if they choose p.m. detention), but it feels like punishment for teachers as well. Why not have students apologize (as the young boy in the article does) and be required to do something positive for the school, rather than merely serving time? Perhaps detention is meant to be a deterrent, a threat that stops students from disrupting class or being tardy. I'm interested in hearing what students think about this, as I don't feel many students are in class thinking "I'd do something stupid and inappropriate right now, only I don't want a detention."

I especially don't understand the point of detention for younger students. They need guidance and instruction on how to work through their frustrations in more positive ways. Meditation can help with that. As the building principal quoted in the article said, " . . . we're trying really hard here to make this a place where children feel safe and their needs are met." The connection between students who receive detentions and students whose needs are not being met outside of the school building is strong. So let's use schools to help those students rather than merely punishing them.

While I believe these lessons in how to deal with stress are even more necessary for high school students, I fear many high school students would resist such lessons. High school students would look at these exercises as weird, even though breathing exercises and yoga are things many elite athletes use to deal with stress and improve focus. And few schools have the support of a non-profit foundation to run meditation centers, as the school in the article did. Understaffed schools are much more likely to stick to the status quo and put students in detention, even though such detentions do little if anything to actually address the reasons the student earned the detention in the first place.

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  • I personally think that this meditation idea is great. I don't really see the point in detentions, because when you get one and you go in to serve it you just sit around for however long it is. With the meditation it gives the students time to reflect on what they did and then calm down in a nice environment. I think it is a positive step, because it's not really a punishment if your teacher makes you go meditate or if he/she gives you a detention. When I serve detentions I just want them to be over so I just mess around or do something else to pass the time, I never really sit back and think of why I'm sitting in that room, or why I got in trouble. I'm sure you could just do the same thing in the meditation room, but I don't think you'd be in such a hurry to leave. The reason why I say this is, because it's a nice laid back area where it'll always be peaceful and calming.

    I'm not really sure how it'd work for high school students, we'd either use it as a study hall or just mess around with friends if there are any in there. I honestly think that the students would much rather meditate than be in detention. While in detention everyone is just waiting to get out, because they are missing time to hangout with their friends or do whatever they do after school, but If they went to a meditation room during the day they wouldn't be as stressed so they'd have time to think about what happened and why they are in the room in the first place.

    I think detentions are given as a punishment, and I think some teachers expect students to take one detention and just turn to saints. From what I've seen growing up like that it's never happened before, if anything it just makes us more cautious so we can get away with things behind teacher's backs more easily, because if we get caught it either goes one or two ways. A) We actually learn from the experience and never do it again, or B) we learn from the experience and continue doing it, but just a lot more careful. Another reason why I think teachers give detentions is, because it's like a heads up or a warning for the future. It may be a detention now from messing up and you serve forty-five minutes, but ten years down the road you could mess up and instead of serving forty-five minutes you're serving forty-five years.

    "It's make a huge impact"

    I agree with Grace, I've seen peoples days get ruined, because they got yelled at and got a detention.
  • I feel like the meditation room would work because a lot of kids today are not scared to have a detention. Most high schoolers today think they are cool when they get a detention. Sometimes it is a daily thing for people to have a detention. I think if we still had detentions for the bigger things but had a meditation room for the smaller things that it would be different.
    It may work for some highschoolers but not all. Some do need a detention for some things. I think the meditation room would be nice but I feel as if it will fit better for the younger students. The meditation room could benefit more to the younger students because when you young and you have a better outlook on school but then get a detention for a little mistake, they are going to grow to hate school. High schoolers on the other hand are older and should know what's wrong and right. They are 14-19 years old.
    I think teachers give detentions because high schools kids don't have the attitude they should. Teachers think they are old enough to understand right from wrong, and they are. I think Kids should understand what is right from wrong. If they are younger that is another topic though. “Some children are homeless. Some of them come to school from situations where they don't have light at home or food. They see crim occur in neighborhoods.”
    I agree with grace because teachers don't want to spend there time after school watching you making sure you are listening, or making sure you do your work.
  • Detentions is a punishment to the student from a teacher. The purpose of a detention is to punish the student, make the student realize what they did was wrong, but also to make them not make the same mistake again. But anymore students don't learn from detentions as they should, they just keep getting detentions over and over again. Detentions are more of a punishment to the teacher than to the student, the teacher has to take time out of their day and watch a kid do homework or stare into space. The student should have to apologize for their actions.
    I believe the mindful moment room would be better than a detention, but would it really work on older kids? I think that some students would purposely get into trouble so they could get out of class, and go to the mindful moment room. I think that elementary kids should have the meditation room rather than the detention. I think that the meditation room would benefit them more than a detention, but I don't thin that if they repetitively keep getting in trouble, that they should still go to the mindful moment room.
    When it says that, "students who are disruptive in class are sent to the Mindful Moment Room by their teachers." I think it's better than a detention, because then you aren't wasting the teacher's time to get a detention or talk after class disturbing the next, the teacher just simply says, go to the the mindful moment room, where the kid good calm down then later say sorry for his actions. I think that this way is a better than a detention where some students use as a extra study hall. I agree with Lexie Ziegmann when she talked about how if we had a mindful moment room for little kids, that they will know to use what they have learned from that experience when they are older.
  • It took me a while to understand that these are elementary kids, not middle or high schooners receiving this treatment. For kids, I think this is a great idea, with the exception of repeat offenders, who may require something more severe than a few deep breaths. As for high school students, I think this would be highly ineffective, possibly even causing a greater issue than before. Image this; Person A makes taunting remarks about person B. Person B becomes enraged, and physical aggression ensues. Person B being sent to a room to meditate would likely just give Person A more material to taunt person B with. Again, for children, I think it is good idea. Teens, not so much. "'We have a few frequent fliers here,' Lee said". This makes me think that some kids are simply acting to get out of what they think is frivolous. Oftentimes, detentions are not to teach a lesson, they are only to get the kid to be quiet, and for some, it eventually loses effectiveness, and the kid simply doesn't care. This aligns with Madison's statement that detention is simply a 45 minute waste of everyone's time.
  • “An Oasis of Calm” also known as The Mindful Moment Room. I was surprised that The Mindful Moment Room(TMM)even existed because every school I have ever been to has had detention as there redirection action. But either way if the article speaks truth about how kids didn’t get in trouble as much after a moment in TMM then I would love to have this because that means that I wouldn’t get in trouble as much anymore. Which in turn would be good for me and my teachers because I would be passing all my classes and they wouldn’t have to yell at me to be quiet, sit down, and to do my work. I believe that giving students meditation time is a more efficient way of dealing with bad behavior because when teachers give students detentions the student that has been issued the detention becomes rebellious toward the rules and regulations of the school and he/she may even become violent toward other students.


    Well for High Schoolers this concept might not work because High School is also known as the kingdom of immaturity because 80% of all freshman are immature and 10% of upperclassman. So if we had this as a discipline then they would continue to get in trouble just so that they could go back. Because it is a way to get out of class. But if we had a level system for example I get in trouble and get sent to TMM then I come back to class and get in trouble yet again then I should get a stern talking to and then get sent there and if it happens again then I should get a detention and well you get the picture. Here in carroll high school Ms.O’leary has people clean the sink instead of giving out detentions


    People believe that detentions are just another way of disciplining a student but the truth is that they are more for redirecting a student's behavior because if you make a student pay with his time by making him/her stay after school then in the end they realize that they should probably stop what they are doing to get detentions because it is obvious that they are losing free time. I agree with Grace Friel because students who receive detentions often do begin to have resentment toward teachers and or the school.I would know because I too despise the thought of having school until I realized that it was my fault; that I was in the wrong and I decided to accept the consequences of my actions and went on with my life.
  • We see it in the halls everyday. A kid is upset or mad because a teacher just yelled at them or gave them a detention, it just ruined their whole day. They now have resentment to school or even that teacher. But why? Why did they give out a detention? I think that our school why we give out detentions is that because we want the kids to “learn a lesson” or “pay” their time for wasting a class period amount of time. But, I agree with Mr. Polking. Does that mean the teachers have to suffer too? They show up either really early or have to stay late because someone did something that was disapproved by a teacher. Then the same kids (majority of the time) keep getting detentions, so have they not learned their lesson yet?


    I agree with what we talked about in the article, especially with the elementary kids. Kids at a young age don’t need to start hating school due to a mistake they made. I think they shouldn’t be disciplined as harshly and maybe go to a meditation room. They can calm their anger and be happy and realize what they did wrong. Then maybe these skills they learn when they are young will help them down the road from depression, anxiety, etc. It may even help them with something small like not freaking out right before a test.


    Then there is having meditation rooms in high school. I think that if the kids from a young age had this type of lifestyle it would be totally fine. But say tomorrow they give us a meditation room, I think the majority of the kids would mock it and think of it as a big joke. I do think some kids would use it seriously, but they would be categorized as the weird kids. Then yes there are kids who see detentions as big jokes. They have nothing going on after school, and l they don’t see a future for themselves. It just doesn’t really matter to them.


    So maybe a meditation room could work for them. There is more out there than staying after school for 90 minutes and getting yelled at. Maybe these kids just bottle up what is really on going on in their life and act out for someone to finally notice them if they come from a shaky background. ‘“When we sit with pain or discomfort rather than act on it, we learn that feelings and sensations come and go. We don’t necessarily need to act on them all. We have a chance to pause and make a thoughtful choice about how to respond.” Overall we can see how much this could benefit kids if we did have an alternate for detentions.
  • I think giving students a meditation time instead of detention is a good idea. Detention is kinda pointless. All you do is sit there and play on your phone. Which is something you can do at home. You might as well have kids stay in a room by themselves to think about what they did instead of having them stay after school.

    I think it would work. Like I said all we do in detention is play on our phones and sit there. I think detention is just a reason to make kids stay at school longer than they want to. I don't like coming to school in the first place so I really don't want to stay longer than I actually want to. I kinda think if kids actually had someone to talk to about what they did I think they would like a meditation room.

    I think teachers give detentions because they want to teach the student a lesson about what they did. It takes time out of the students day before or after school to stay after school. If you get a detention obviously you did something wrong to get that detention so you deserve to stay after school.

    The direct quote I found and used is “When students come down here, they’re all rowdy and goofing around”. I think when they get there and get relaxed they are fine to go back to class. I think it helps students to find out why they got sent down here. If they get a detention they don't get to talk to someone about what they did so I think it's dumb to give a student a detention

    I disagree with Sydney Haakenson because she thinks that the meditation room wouldn't work. I think that a lot of people would benefit from a meditation room. Detention is just something you can do at home but you're doing it at a different place
  • Detention- a pointless 45+ minutes that not only waste teacher's times but all teaches the kids nothing. In my opinion detention teaches kids nothing, as a high schooler most kids don’t care if they get anything out of detention other than a hate for the teacher or staff member that gave them it. As elementary students, they need to instructed not to do it again and taught that disrupting class is not okay, but by putting them in detention all they do is sit there and either work on homework or read, so they do learn anything. Instead of putting kids in detention I agree with the article let's start putting meditation into the works. Although most kids might think it is weird, they will most likely get something out of it.

    Having a mediation room would be a positive way to punish a kids because they would learn way more than they would in detention. For younger kids this would work great, they would learn how to manage their emotions and instead of sitting a doing nothing in detention they would be learning things.They would also be learning how to calm themselves down if this ever happened outside of school. But for high school students I don’t think it would help because the kids are going to think that it is weird and they are going to refuse to do it. They what happens? After a kid refuses to do it do they get detention then? Or what?


    “Students who are disruptive in class are sent to the mindful moments room by their teachers. There, foundation staff members encourage them to talk about what led them to their dismissal from class, and then they sit down for some breathing exercises. They’re instructors to close their eyes and inhale and exhale deeply.” This quote explains my claim really well, unlike detention in the mindful moments room kids are learning how to calm down and manage their emotions. Where in detention they would most likely build up anger towards the teacher that gave them detention and the teacher that is having to either come early or stay late at school to watch them.


    I agree with Lexie Ziegmann when she says that meditation for younger kids is a good thing so that when they get to the higher up grades they can use what they learned when they were younger. She makes a really good point about Younger kids using what they learned in elementary when they get to middle school and high school, so that they don’t end up in detention all of the time.
  • I think giving younger students meditation is a good idea. So when they get to the higher up grades if they are having troubles then they can do what they learned when they were younger. I think giving younger students meditation is better than a detention because most of the time that younger children get mad and so they do whatever. So when the younger students get older and they know that they are having a bad day they can do what they learned when they were younger and it could help a lot better then getting a detention.

    It could work for high school students because most kids as they get older they know when they are mad. So if the high school student is mad they could do meditation and it could prevent them from getting mad at other people and getting a detention for it. But on the other hand it could be a childish thing because as you get older you should be able to control your actions more.

    Teacher give students detention because they think it is going to help they realize that they did wrong. Giving a detention can be a punishment but then it can’t be, because most of the time students think it’s cool to have a detention so they just do it for fun. So then it’s not a punishment for them. Where some students have never got a detention so they know it’s a punishment for them so they are really upset and think they are in trouble. When all a detention is, is to to teach the student what they did wrong and to not do it again.

    In the article it states “We’re trying really hard here to make this a place where children feel safe” I think school should be a safe place for student to go when they are having troubles at home. If school isn’t safe then where would students go to get help on something they need help on. Like there are students that have problem with family. Where are they going to go if the student doesn’t feel the school is safe. They then have nowhere to go and talk about their problems with someone. I think if students are having problem with family and can’t really talk to family about it they should go to the school so they can get help of their problems.

    I agree with Faith when she says that it’s a positive step for schools to give out more detentions, like Faith said most parents don’t get off work until 5 or 6, and especially when the family is needing money they parents can’t just leave to get their kid and expect to get paid for it. Most parents would be mad if their child got a detention, because then they will have to take off work, but then you have those parents that don’t care because they have a lot of money so they can leave work whenever and not have to worry about losing any money.
  • I think it is a good idea for most of the students. If students meditate it could relieve their anger towards why they got a detention. Some students probably wouldn't take the meditation seriously, they would just screw around. Its positive because the meditation can help relieve all the stress that kid has, and they could also find out easier what's going on in their life, for why they did the things they did.

    I don't think it would work for high school students because they wouldn't take it serious and they would think that it's funny. The only way it would work, would be for the students who are open minded about doing the meditation stuff. Most kids wouldn't want to share their behavioral issues in a detention, so it would most likely be the same for the meditation room.

    We give detentions to teach people a lesson on what they did wrong. They have to take time out of their to come and think about what they did wrong in the detention. Detention can be a punishment because obviously if you got a detention, you were doing something wrong. Some kids don't even get anything out of detention because some kids get them often.

    A direct quotation from the article I found and agree with is, “Students who are disruptive in class are sent to the Mindful Moment Room by their teachers.” This would be nice at our school because there are some kids who disrupt class, so we can't get anything done in the class we are that period. This would be a good thing for some teachers to do at our school, we would get a lot more done during the class period.

    I agree with with Sammie Walsh because she said that the detention barely work anymore and kids don't get anything out of them. Only a couple people learn from their detention and on the other hand, other don't learn anything and just keep getting in trouble.
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