Steve Snodgrass, flickr Creative Commons
This post is intended to be a jumping-off point for those seeking to become more trauma-informed in their education practice. It is not intended to be an exhaustive list of resources, but rather a collection of accessible places to start to get familiar with concepts and strategies.
I would love to add onto this list, especially in some areas of intersection: trauma informed and… (specific populations, identities, and settings). Please be in touch or comment below if you have resources to share!
The 12 Core Concepts (National Child Traumatic Stress Network) – this is a fantastic resource to give you the foundations of knowledge you need for working with students who have experienced trauma. This is also a great resource to share with coworkers, parents and other caregivers to start developing some common language and understanding of these concepts.
Concrete Strategies and Day-to-Day Tips
8 Ways to Support Students Who Experience Trauma (by me) – initial strategies for the classroom
Helping Students Who Have Experienced Trauma (also by me) – more strategies and some bigger-picture concepts
20 Tips to Help De-escalate Interactions with Anxious or Defiant Students (by Katrina Shwartz on Mindshift) – anxiety/defiance are fairly common presentations for students with a trauma history. Some nice preventative and responsive strategies here.
Child Trauma Toolkit for Educators (from the National Child Traumatic Stress Network) – more comprehensive (while still being succinct and clear) guide around understanding and supporting students who have experienced trauma.
Bigger Picture Approaches and Frames
Lives in the Balance/Ross Greene: essential resource working with behaviorally challenging kids (and many kids who experience trauma exhibit behavior challenges at some point). Check out his book Lost at School as well.
Restorative Practices (International Institute for Restorative Practices) – when thinking about trauma-informed practice, “discipline” must be reimagined, and restorative practices is a great path forward.
Background Information/Learn More
ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences) Study (CDC) – some foundational research on the impact of experiences which may be traumatic
10 Things About Childhood Trauma Every Teacher Needs To Know (WeAreTeachers) – good overview of some important points about trauma
Toxic Stress (Harvard Center on the Developing Child) – simple explainer (with video and visuals) on the concept of toxic stress. For more on the impact of racism as it relates to chronic/toxic stress, see this article in The Atlantic by Melinda D. Anderson
Oakland Elementary School Uses Tupac’s Poetry to Help Children Deal with PTSD (Jamilah King on Mic) – this looks at a specific school’s approach but also gives a great summary of the impact of exposure to violence for youth.
The Paradox of Trauma-Informed Care (Vicky Kelly) – TEDx talk on the basics of developmental/childhood trauma and its impacts on the brain and decision-making
Helping Students with Trauma, Tragedy and Grief (Edutopia) – collection of Edutopia resources on a variety of topics related to trauma.
Fostering Resilient Learners: Strategies for Creating a Trauma-Sensitive Classroom (Kristin Souers and Pete Hall, ASCD) – excellent and easy-to-read book covering the fundamental elements of a trauma-informed classroom.