Reading fiction in your classroom can encourage us to be more mindful by fostering empathy

Posted on August 30 2016

We all know that instilling the love of reading should begin at home and in the classroom at an early age, with hopes that it will continue into adulthood.  Scientists are beginning to research reading and the effect it has on the brain.  Early studies have shown that when we read fictional stories, we become more empathetic because many times we are put in the character’s shoes and live their lives through their story.  Because of this, we become more mindful by being more compassionate and empathetic towards others.  When we move from fictional picture books to more complex titles, we have to increase our imaginative skills and picture the story elements.  The characters, situations and settings become our own and we can draw from previous experiences and exposures to relate to what is happening.  Empathy is the experience of what another person is going through.  Fictional reading puts us there and encourages us to be more mindful.


Laura Zimmer- Author/Creator of The Beginner's Mind Mindfulness Teaching Toolkit - A mindfulness curriculum for elementary children. 

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