Creating Thriving Learning Environments for All Students
Workshop Title: Creating Thriving Learning Environments
Educators are struggling to help students learn the social emotional skills of self-awareness, self-management, decision making, and relationship management. The development of these competencies is compounded by a growing number of students exposed to traumatic stress that threatens their life or bodily integrity, and invoke intense feelings of helplessness, powerlessness, and terror (American Psychological Association, 2008). These events “overwhelm the ordinary systems of care that give people a sense of control, connection and meaning” (Herman, 1992).
How do today’s educators help strengthen the knowledge and skill base to address severe behavior challenges in their classrooms so students may acquire a broad array of skills, attitudes, character traits, and values to succeed in school, careers, and life.
This course focuses on the work to create learning spaces that support the whole student that are physically and emotionally safe and are based on warm, supportive relationships – including those between children and teachers that are fundamental to learning.
The Tri-State Summit and extended learning that will occur in this class will focus on how to build structures that support relationships, create schoolwide cultures that encourage student voice and agency through practices, affirm the cultural backgrounds of the diverse students that schools serve, so all young people and adults feel a sense of belonging and respect for who they are and end punitive and counterproductive disciplinary strategies, such as zero-tolerance policies that push students out of schools and classrooms.
Educators will research best practices in the above areas of interest to implement in their classrooms and schools. Beyond the Tri-State Summit, educators will participate in three webinars which will include instruction, discussion rooms and written reflection.
This course is presented as a blended face-to-face and online format.
Workshop Objectives (What should participants know or be able to do upon completion of this workshop?)
1. Learn the basic foundations that create a safe and supportive learning environment.
2. Become aware of the importance of offering respect and creating listening space for voice and agency across difference in developing a sense of belonging
3. Understand how operating in our spheres of influence builds a culture of inclusion and creates a decentralized system of care
Evaluation Criteria: (Include brief description of required assignments and evaluation methodology.)
Participants will submit a written reflection on the keynote and breakout sessions they attended at the Tri-State Summit. Additional assignments will include a written reflection of the movie Resilience, and the creation of a plan for implementation of chosen classroom strategies for relationship building, brain breaks and mindfulness, and social emotional skill reinforcement.
(identify all break times)
(Provide details regarding methodology for presentation of each topic.)
Tri-State Summit on Creating Thriving Learning Environments for All Students—includes morning and lunch keynote speakers and four breakout sessions (agenda attached)
March 12 Webinar
Overview of ACEs and challenge of educating students with ACEs
Educator Self-Care as a pre-requisite and creation of a self-care plan
Effects of Trauma on the Brain and Dysregulation
March 19 Webinar
Classroom Solutions: Characteristics of High Performing Teachers
Growth Mindset & Bernard’s Resiliency Framework
Role Play on behavior—address what’s causing the behavior
Interventions and Strategies; Homework
(2 X 10, Talk Trust Feel Repair, Restorative Practices, Transitions, Ready to Learn Room)
March 23 Webinar
Resilience Movie Screening and Discussion
Mindfulness Activities: Definition and Buy-in
Mindful Breathing Activity
Yoga in the Classroom
Mindfulness for the Teacher
Storytelling, Sounding Bowls, Activity Books, and Mindfulness Resources
Wrap up and assignment
Time allowed to practice selected techniques in the classroom and report as part of assignment
Total Time (excluding breaks)
Total workshop time must include a minimum of 15 contact hours for each hour of college credit.
- Grade(s): Elementary K-5 | Secondary 6-12
- Subject(s): Professional Development
- By South Dakota Teacher Effectiveness Domains/Components: