Empowering all: legitimizing the impacts of trauma and using a universal design to work with and reverse these impacts
Childhood trauma can significantly impact a child’s ability to successfully function in school. This impact can occur across all domains- social, emotional, behavioural and cognitive- resulting in lagging skills in each domain. In order to carry out inclusive practices pertaining to childhood trauma, the impacts of trauma need to be legitimized, and inclusive practices need to be implemented via a Universal Design for Learning. From an ecological perspective, this applied project explores the connections between trauma and lagging skills in the school setting, as well as inclusive trauma informed teaching practices. It culminates with a four-part workshop series intended to empower educators. The first two, two hour interactive workshops introduce ACE scores, lagging skills, and Universally Designed trauma informed practices. The next part of the series is a 6-8-week independent intentional application period within the participants’ own teaching practice. The series culminates with a sharing session focused on learning and goals for next steps.