Pay close attention to students who have experienced recent deaths or key life changes, witnessed the death, or have emotional problems. Recognize that children may need what seem like endless explanations about what happened because of their immature ego structure. Allow emotional expression.
Another reason children may seem to under-react to a traumatic event is that they can only tolerate intense feelings for a short period of time. Maintain a normal routine in your classroom and engage students in activities they previously enjoyed. If it is a classroom teacher, I would suggest that there be an ongoing, regular system of supporting the class through their grieving process.
As school counselors, we make sure that the callers are comfortable with the task and also with the potential challenges of helping people who are distraught.
Your email address will not be published. You can be a lifeline in their day-to-day struggle of facing and emerging from grief. Have developed a complete death concept but may lack the ability to fully understand abstract concepts that are involved in certain causes of death.
Share a written statement and presentation of the circumstances of the death Prepare teachers to share the information with their homerooms or first period classes. While traumas are by definition upsetting, our response to them is what makes them manageable.
A variety of feelings are normal. Issues in Mental Health Nursing , 31, 470-476.
It is a beautiful story of loss and how memories can help us heal. Contemporary School Psychology. The death of a student, teacher, or staff member can affect you as well as your students. The high school released some of the juniors and seniors to come over and assist adults.
Instead, validate the idea that there is no one right way to feel. Degree of Interest: If possible, ask teachers to present the information during 1st period or homeroom. Their deaths came in the summer.
Review with children the many different ways we can react to loss and reinforce that there is no one way or right way to feel. Dealing with trauma is not something most of us have much experience with - it's not a "normal" parenting skill.
Ask the administrator to cancel afterschool meetings if at all possible. Keep in mind that you need to take care of yourself as well, and if you need to miss school or take time to get help yourself, you will be much more effective at helping your students in the long run.
We spent extra time in the classrooms where Carol worked. Both of these women modeled incredible strength and positivity day in and day out to the rest of us as they managed treatments, dealt with discomfort and setbacks, got good news and bad, kept the school running smoothly, and provided a loving foundation for their families.
I feel very sad, too.