Monday, November 18, 2019

Trauma Informed Instruction and Real Life

My teammate took this picture at the end of the first day of school this year.  I'm smiling and that's a good sign. This is the beginning of year 28.

Three years ago, a woman I'd never seen before knocked on my door and asked me if I planned to divorce my husband. I discovered that the life I thought I had wasn't real. I joined a recovery ministry to get help for myself and ended up co-leading it. (This is the story of my life.) My ex passed away suddenly this March. It's been a rough three years.

I share this on a teaching blog, not to get sympathy, but to share how experiencing multiple emotional traumas affected my ability to focus and learn.  It's one thing to read a book about trauma.  It's another thing to live it and process it and try to come through it as a whole human being.

Speaking of focus and reading, I used to be able to read at least a book a week.  I am doing well if I finish a book in a month. This is one way life's events have affected me. Experiencing this helps me understand why my students struggle to focus on school work.

The morning my school introduced trauma-informed instruction, the school counselor began with a list of adverse experiences. I identified with so many of the experiences on the list, that I bolted from the room. 

As I have processed through my own emotions, I have gained empathy. I have students who have been through so much and yet they show up every day and try to focus.

My life right now is so different than what I expected, but I'm finding ways to be better not bitter.  My support group has an elementary teacher as a recovery leader, and they are okay with that.  My students have a recovery leader as their teacher, and I know they are better off for that.

As a person of faith I do believe everything works together for good...even when I don't feel it.

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