We know educators and family members, along all of us at the Wisconsin Department of Puiblic Instruction, have been grappling with how to process the traumatic events we are seeing in the news, from the international stage to our own local experiences. So, we want to share a few resources that have been valuable to us as educators and as caregivers when we talk with the children in our lives about traumatic events and the grief that can accompany them. Below are some resources we hope you find helpful in your own processing.
Please remember, you can reach out to your professional and personal support systems, and you may want to consider stepping back from social media/media if it is feeling overwhelming. Most of all, you do not have to be alone in this.
Resources for processing traumatic stories in the news:
- NPR: What to say to kids when the news is scary
- Learning for Justice: When bad things are happening
- American Academy of Pediatrics: How to talk with kids about tragedies and other traumatic news events
- Sesame Workshop: Traumatic experiences
- National Association of School Psychologists: Talking to children about violence
- American Psychological Association: Tips for parents and teachers of teens
- UNICEF: How to talk to your children about conflict and war
Resources for processing grief:
- New York Life Foundation: Bereavement Support
- Sesame Workshop: Grief
- National Association of School Psychologists: Addressing grief
- Coalition to Support Grieving Students: What to say
For a compilation of some of these resources in a shareable format, see this Resources for Families document, and for more resources, including the “Supporting Student Trauma and Grief” webinar with Dr. Schonfeld, visit the DPI Student Services Prevention and Wellness team’s mental health webpage.
It's OK to take breaks. It's OK to ask for help, or to seek community. If you are struggling, please reach out.