Teaching Mindfulness to Teachers: a Systematic Review and Narrative Synthesis

Mindfulness (N Y). 2017;8(5):1136-1149. doi: 10.1007/s12671-017-0691-4. Epub 2017 Feb 23.


School teachers report high levels of stress which impact on their engagement with pupils and effectiveness as a teacher. Early intervention or prevention approaches may support teachers to develop positive coping and reduce the experience and impact of stress. This article reviews research on one such approach: mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) for school teachers. A systematic review and narrative synthesis were conducted for quantitative and qualitative studies that report the effects of MBIs for teachers of children aged 5-18 years on symptoms of stress and emotion regulation and self-efficacy. Twelve independent publications were identified meeting the inclusion criteria and these gave a total of 13 samples. Quality appraisal of the identified articles was carried out. The effect sizes and proportion of significant findings are reported for relevant outcomes. The quality of the literature varied, with main strengths in reporting study details, and weaknesses including sample size considerations. A range of MBIs were employed across the literature, ranging in contact hours and aims. MBIs showed strongest promise for intermediary effects on teacher emotion regulation. The results of the review are discussed in the context of a model of teacher stress. Teacher social and emotional competence has implications for pupil wellbeing through teacher-pupil relationships and effective management of the classroom. The implications for practice and research are considered.

Keywords: Interventions; Mindfulness; Self-efficacy; Teacher; Teacher stress.

Publication types

  • Review