Research following training & implementation of Pause, Breathe, Smile in Canterbury school

In 2017, MEG worked with the Rata Foundation to further the reach of PBS and the mental wellbeing of Canterbury students and teachers.

Rata Foundation funding enabled the Mental Health Foundation to contract the Mindfulness Education Group to provide:

  • 20 scholarships for Canterbury based educators to complete the PBS Professional Development pathway
  • An evaluation report on the impacts of those educators implementing PBS in the classroom
  • 25 additional personal wellbeing scholarships to teachers within Canterbury to participate in MEG’s ‘Breathe’ online mindfulness (not the subject of this report)

This report evaluates the impact of the Rata Foundation funding in three areas

  1. The wellbeing impact for children and young people resulting from PBS being implemented in classrooms by the newly trained educators
  2. The personal wellbeing impact for the educators who participated in PBS training
  3. How well the intended outcomes of PBS were met


Key findings of this report– wellbeing impacts for children and young people

The evaluation presented within this report reinforces previously published research of PBS

Four main themes emerged in this evaluation from analysis of  PBS delivery in Canterbury classrooms:

  1. Increased calm
  2. Improvements in empathy, kindness and respect
  3. Enhanced emotion regulation, resilience and self-regulation
  4. Greater engagement in learning with improved focused and attention

In addition, benefits were observed for students at home, during play, and in class time outside of the eight one – hour sessions when PBS was formally implemented


Key findings of this report – wellbeing impacts for teachers

All but one Teacher experienced a meaningful improvement in personal wellbeing following completion of the ‘Breathe’ online mindfulness course. As a result of implementing PBS in the

classroom, a range of personal and professional benefits were also reported. These included feeling calmer, increased self-awareness, feeling more engaged with the class and improvements in collaborative teaching.

This report outlines these key findings in detail and recommends next steps for rolling out PBS in the Canterbury region. The MHF and MEG thanks the Rata Foundation for the generosity that has enabled the implementation of this project. As this report details, the impact on children, young people, and their teachers in Canterbury has had substantial positive impact, thus contributing to the MHF’s vision of ‘creating a society where all people flourish.

Read the full report