Highland Park Trauma Newsletter
November 2016: Creating a Sense of Safety
Thank you for the positive feedback on the first newsletter! This month, our focus is on creating a sense of safety within the school. As we embark on this work, it is important to acknowledge that people who grow up with a sense of safety (loving parents, secure home, enough food to eat) simply can't imagine growing up without safety. Often, children who have experienced trauma may perceive threat or danger where we see none, and that can be confusing and frustrating for staff who work with them.
Please take four minutes to watch the video below. It is an illustration of how a traumatic incident in childhood can change a person's (or a bear's) worldview.
Developmental trauma can negatively impact cognitive, academic, physical, emotional, spiritual, and social development. Students may be hypervigilant, defensive, irritable, defiant, or have unpredictable shifts in their mood and behavior as a result.
This may initially be discouraging, however the good news is that educators can help brains heal. New research on neuroplasticity, which we will discuss in more detail later, provides much hope for those of us impacted by trauma.