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Childhood trauma in the classroom 10 things teachers need to know

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

For children who have experienced trauma, learning can be a big struggle. Here’s how to help them.

With grief, sadness is obvious. With trauma, the symptoms can go largely unrecognized because it shows up looking like other problems: frustration, acting out, or difficulty concentrating, following directions or working in a group. Often students are misdiagnosed with anxiety, behavior disorders or attention disorders, rather than understanding the trauma that’s driving those symptoms and reactions.

Adoption-friendly family trees

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine
At some point, almost every child will have to tackle a family tree school project. Classic family tree assignments assume every kid comes from an intact biological family with one mom and one dad, which can leave adopted kids feeling confused, left out, and sad. These alternative family trees welcome kids from all families to celebrate their uniqueness.

From Sierra Leone to Coquitlam - Part 2

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Joseph is now 11 years old. He was born in Sierra Leone, West Africa. In his first few years, he tragically lost his birth family and ended up in a refugee camp and then an orphanage. After a three-year search and a two-year adoption process, he came to Canada to join his new family in Coquitlam. It has been an incredible journey for this young boy.

Extreme Parenting series

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Claire’s 10-year-old son, Adam, was adopted from a Russian orphanage when he was 19 months old. Her second son, Ethan, joined their family from foster care at age 7. In this 12-part series, Claire shares the “fast and furious learning” she and her family experienced when they adopted an older child.

Heart-shaped cookies

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

When my older daughter, Jessica, was in kindergarten she love to attend birthday parties. However, one day she came home from a birthday celebration very sad and very quiet. She wanted to be left alone and didn't want to talk about the party.

Success for Aboriginal students

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

In School District 59, a ground-breaking program works with Aboriginal students, coach/mentor teachers, families, and communities to improve outcomes for Aboriginal students.

According to District Vice Principle Caron Jones, a coach/mentor teacher in each school guides a collaborative process that places Aboriginal student achievement at the forefront. The result has been increased successes in many areas including reading scores, course completion, and graduation rates, which rose from 45% to 62% over five years.

Adopted voice: Finding silver linings

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Sticks and stones

Remember that rhyme you learned as a child? “Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” Obviously words can’t cause physical harm, but I’ve learned they definitely can cause emotional pain, the kind you hold in your heart and wear on your sleeve. The kind that leaves scars that never really go away.

Extreme parenting: The little things

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Lose your expectations

When Ethan came into our family, he was very angry. My family and friends wondered what he had to be angry about. All they could see was that he was part of a loving family. They thought he should be grateful. It was interesting to me that these usually empathetic folks couldn’t immediately see the loss suffered by this child. Before I could understand what was going on, I had to abandon my expectations of them--and of Ethan.

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