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Addressing Childhood Trauma in the Classroom

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Over the past few years, the issue of childhood trauma in the United States has become significant. A growing number of children are experiencing abuse, neglect, or some other form of maltreatment each year. Considering the stressful home lives of

Over the past few years, the issue of childhood trauma in the United States has become significant. A growing number of children are experiencing abuse, neglect, or some other form of maltreatment each year. Considering the stressful home lives of maltreated children, the one sure sanctuary is school. However, this idea requires teachers to be actively involved in identifying and caring for the children who need it most. Traumatic childhood experiences leave lasting scars on its victims, so it is helpful if teachers learn how to identify and support children who have lived through them. It is unfortunate that teachers will most likely encounter children throughout their career who have experienced horrendous things, but it is a reality. With this being said, teachers need to develop an understanding of what traumatized children live with, and learn how to address these issues with skilled sensitivity. Schools are not just a place where children learn how to read and write; they build the foundation for a successful life. This project was designed to provide teachers with a necessary resource for helping children who have suffered traumatic experiences. The methodology of this project began with interviews with organizations specializing in working with traumatized children such as Arizonans for Children, Free Arts for Abused Children, The Sojourner Center, and UMOM. The next step was a review of the current literature on the subject of childhood trauma. The findings have all been compiled into one, convenient document for teacher use and distribution. Upon completion of this document, an interactive video presentation will be made available through an online education website, so that distribution will be made simpler. Hopefully, teachers will share the information with people in their networks and create a chain reaction. The goal is to make it available to as many teachers as possible, so that more children will receive the support they need.

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2016-05

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Rolling Down Ramps: A Unit Plan to Address the Urgent Need of STEM Instruction in Preschool

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STEM education stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and is necessary for students to keep up with global competition in the changing job market, technological advancements and challenges of the future. However, American students are lacking STEM achievement at

STEM education stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and is necessary for students to keep up with global competition in the changing job market, technological advancements and challenges of the future. However, American students are lacking STEM achievement at the state, national and global levels. To combat this lack of achievement I propose that STEM instruction should begin in preschool, be integrated into the curriculum and be inquiry based. To support this proposal I created a month-long physics unit for preschoolers in a Head Start classroom. Students investigated the affect of incline, friction and weight on the distance of a rolling object, while developing their pre-math, pre-literacy and social emotional skills.

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2015-05

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Relations of Empathy to Anger, Gender, and Intrusive Maternal Parenting in Toddlers

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This longitudinal study examines the relations of anger, gender, and intrusive maternal parenting to empathy in toddlers. Participants (247 toddlers at the initial assessment) were assessed in a laboratory at approximately 18 (T1, N = 247), 30 (T2, N =

This longitudinal study examines the relations of anger, gender, and intrusive maternal parenting to empathy in toddlers. Participants (247 toddlers at the initial assessment) were assessed in a laboratory at approximately 18 (T1, N = 247), 30 (T2, N = 216), and 42 (T3, N = 192) months of age. Toddlers' observed anger was measured during a toy removal task and maternal intrusiveness was observed during free play between mother and toddler. Reported empathy was measured using questionnaires completed by mothers and fathers. At 18 months, a positive relation between observed anger and reported empathy was found for boys, but not for girls. At 30 months, maternal intrusiveness positively predicted empathy in boys, but it negatively predicted empathy in girls. These findings provide insight about sex differences in the development of empathy and concern for others in early childhood.

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2013-05

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Integrating Music in the Classroom

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A look at the benefits of the integration of music in the classroom. This thesis focuses on how music supports brain development and how that affects the ways children learn the classroom. It also highlights how current teachers feel about

A look at the benefits of the integration of music in the classroom. This thesis focuses on how music supports brain development and how that affects the ways children learn the classroom. It also highlights how current teachers feel about integrating music in the classroom and the best practices used for integrating music. Lastly, this thesis contains strategies on how to integrate music in the classroom using the Common Core standards as well as personal compositions written using Common Core standards.

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Date Created
2013-05

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The relations of household chaos to children's language development: the mediating roles of children's effortful control and parenting

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This study drew upon a bioecological framework to empirically investigate the relations between environmental chaos and preschoolers' language across time, including the potentially mediating roles of children's effortful control and parenting. Child sex also was examined as a moderator of

This study drew upon a bioecological framework to empirically investigate the relations between environmental chaos and preschoolers' language across time, including the potentially mediating roles of children's effortful control and parenting. Child sex also was examined as a moderator of these relations. For this study, the following data were collected at 30, 42, and 54 months of age. Household chaos and (at 30 months) socioeconomic status (SES) were reported by mothers. Children's effortful control (EC) was rated by mothers and nonparental caregivers, and was observed during a number of laboratory tasks. Maternal vocalizations were assessed during free play sessions with their children (at 30 and 42 months), and supportive and unsupportive parenting behaviors and affect were observed during free play and teaching tasks at each age. Mothers also reported on their own reactions to children's negative emotions. Finally, (at 54 months) children's expressive and receptive language was measured with a standard assessment. Structural equation modeling and path analyses indicated that SES at 30 months and greater levels of household chaos at 42 months predicted not only poorer language skills, but also deficits in children's EC and less supportive parenting in low-income mothers at 54 months, even when controlling for stability in these constructs. Children's effortful control at 42 months, but not parenting, positively predicted later language, suggesting that EC may play a mediating role in the relations between household chaos, as well as SES, and preschoolers' language abilities. Child sex did not moderate the pattern of relations. Post-hoc analyses also indicated that the negative relation between chaos and language was significant only for children who had low EC at 42 months. This study represents a much-needed addition to the currently limited longitudinal research examining environmental chaos and children's developmental outcomes. Importantly, findings from this study elucidate an important process underlying the links between chaos and children's language development, which can inform interventions and policies designed to support families and children living in chaotic home environments.

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Date Created
2012