Wednesday, 28 September 2016

The boy who was raised as a dog

Mmm - this is a serious read and fits in so well with the workshop with Nathan Wallis this week.

It is a series of case studies that pull out some key needs of children and the impact of not having these needs met might look like in their behaviour. Here are the key points I came away with...

1. The first 2.5 years are essential to build that bond with a caregiver

  • I am safe = I can concentrate on growing my brain
  • I respond to pleasing others or disappointing others
  • I learn what it is to be loved and have a relationship
  • I don't respond with unexpected anxiety to everything beacause I know I am safe
Children who have been traumatized and are in a highly anxious state need to know that they are safe. Forget about teaching them at this stage... focus on building a relationship and let them know that they can always rely on you to be the person that keeps them safe. 

Any deficit in a child, such as bullying behaviour, can't be seen as a need for punshment but a need for setting up an opportunity for the child to observe and copy the behaviour needed until the pathway has been built in their brain. 

The earlier the trauma - the harder it is to treat.
Work from their mental age not their chronological age. Start down at the part of the brain what was not stimulated....

Brain stem - safety, basic needs not met
Mid Brain - patterning behaviour, rocking, repetition, touch, 80 beats a minute, 

To recover the child must feel dafe and in control. Never force treat them or try to coerce them. 

1. Calm ourselves first.
2. Take time to watch and listen.
3. Identify what is feeding the behaviour - from the child's point of view. 
4. Remove the child from the company of other agressive or impulsive children. pg 245
5. Establish routine and repetition - extremem trauma takes more repetition to embed.
6. Give the child elements of control - no coersion but from a position of safety.

This leaves me with lots to think about. In combination wiht the workshop, we need to think about how this might look in our classroom and set things in place to support our students. 

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