Real Talk for Real Teachers with Dr. Becky Bailey and special guest Abbi Kruse

Episode Summary

Five Ways to Support Teachers Who Work with Children of Trauma

26% of children ages 0-4 have experienced trauma. For these children, a secure emotional attachment is life-changing. However, building connections with children of trauma isn’t easy. It requires empathy, patience, and persistence. When teachers don’t know how to respond to challenging behaviors, their solutions often make the problem worse. These children need to be included, not excluded.

Additionally, 70% of adults have experienced trauma. This means that in classrooms across the nation, teachers are trying to help children heal from trauma while still struggling with their own. For administrators, it’s crucial to support teachers so that they can support children.

In this episode, Conscious Discipline Certified Instructor Abbi Kruse shares five powerful ways for administrators to support teachers in working with children of trauma. Abbi is the founder and executive director of The Playing Field in Madison, Wisconsin. The Playing Field serves children 0-4 and aims to level the playing field by working with homeless children, middle-class children, and Head Start students in one classroom. Listen as Abbi shares her wisdom on building a school culture that empowers teachers to tackle this challenging, vitally important work.

Essential Takeaways

  • Although we view children as resilient, young children are more vulnerable to trauma than at any other stage of life.
  • Working with children who have experienced trauma is difficult, but we must remember our “why.” These children have experienced so much adversity, but providing just one secure attachment can change their lives and the lives of others around them.
  • To be truly effective in working with children of trauma, we must first address our own trauma.
  • One administrator can’t possibly offer support for all teachers and children at once. This is why it’s essential to build a united, supportive school culture in which teachers rely on and help one another.

Steps For Tomorrow

  • Remember to always keep the mission in front of yourself and your staff. Instead of only focusing on “how” you will possibly accomplish something, remember “why” you’re doing this work.
  • Begin celebrating even small successes. Provide teachers with ongoing support and sincere gratitude.
  • Invest in professional development. Ensure that your teachers have the skills they need to do the job.

Important Links

Product Mentions

Show Outline

  • :22 What is Conscious Discipline?
  • :56 Introduction of guest Abbi Kruse
  • 2:02 Developmental trauma
  • 5:54 Helping teachers respond to children with trauma
  • 8:06 Practice #1: Be honest
  • 10:17 Practice #2: Focus on the mission
  • 11:20 Practice #3: Provide teachers with the skills they need
  • 14:11 Practice #4: Build a School Family that supports one another
  • 15:38 Practice #5: Celebrate success
  • 16:51 Recap and conclusion
  • 19:20 What’s Becky up to?
  • 19:50 What’s Becky celebrating?

Thank You for Listening

There are many ways you could have spent this time today, but you chose to spend it with me and I am grateful. If you enjoyed today’s show, please share it with others via your favorite social media platforms.

Also, would you consider taking 60-seconds to leave an honest review and rating for the podcast on iTunes? Your feedback is extremely helpful when it comes to the ranking of the show and I love to hear your feedback! Also, don’t forget to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes, to get automatic updates every time a new episode goes live!

On behalf of our Conscious Discipline family, we wish you well.