Document Type

Article

Publication Date

Fall 2017

Department

Social Justice and Community Engagement

Department

Social Justice and Community Engagement

Abstract

Although many people would like to think of childhood as a relatively peaceful and happy time, research has indicated that for many children this is far from the case. One study in the United States has estimated that 26% of children will witness or experience a trauma-causing event before they enter kindergarten. Trauma can have a serious impact on a child’s learning and overall classroom experience. Teachers and other school staff can play an important role in recognizing and responding to students presenting with symptoms of trauma in the classroom and mitigating possible adverse impacts on their education. A qualitative study was undertaken to examine the experiences of 4 Ontario teachers in supporting children who had (or were suspected to have had) experienced trauma. The paper at hand details the variety of approaches they took, identifies existing trauma-related resources available to teachers, and provides recommendations for trauma-specific pre-service and in-service training for Ontario teachers. It is hoped that the results of the study may assist and encourage other teachers (and schools) in accommodating traumatized students