4 x 6-hour workshops per semester
4 x 6-hour intensive workshops per semester
1 x 111-hour independent study per semester
Enrolment not permitted
EDUC4845 has been successfully completed
Assignment(s), Case studies, Practical work, Project, Tutorial participation, Tutorial presentation
Topic description

This topic offers a trauma-sensitive approach to support wellbeing leaders, school counsellors, principals, teachers, special education teachers, social workers, youth workers and other professionals working with vulnerable students to create positive learning environments to enhance the physical, emotional and relational wellbeing of our most sensitive students with learning, emotional, behavioural, trauma related, mental health, and sensory difficulties.

Students will have the opportunity to learn about and experience a range of strengths based, solution focused and supportive environmental strategies and activities such as, empathic listening, movement, narrative, therapeutic story writing and telling, sand tray and other sensory, expressive, artistic and movement activities to reduce stress, build resilience and address obstacles to learning, engagement and participation for this group of students. Students will work with and develop case study examples to demonstrate how these activities can be supported through creating area of sanctuary, from rooms, to classroom corners in early years, primary, secondary and special education settings.

Educational aims

This topic aims to assist professionals working in education-related fields to increase their knowledge trauma sensitive ways of working with vulnerable students. It aims to provide evidence based guidance from the field about practical ways professionals:

  • Can create safe, welcome and aesthetic spaces to support student wellbeing
  • Get on the wavelength with vulnerable and sensitive students through expressive activities
  • Connect with families and caregivers
  • Work collaboratively with colleagues
  • Consider their own wellbeing and self-care

This knowledge and developing relational competence will assist in the development of trauma sensitive and inclusive learning environments and school communities.

Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the developmental needs of vulnerable children and young people and their carers or family
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of the challenges faced by vulnerable students, and their parent-caregivers
  3. Identify effective ways to provide calm and welcoming learning and supportive environments in which vulnerable young people can experience safety, belonging, consistency and predictability
  4. Draw on a range of strengths based, creative, expressive and non-verbal approaches to reduce stress and build resilience to enable young people to communicate and express their feelings safely and appropriately
  5. Apply a chosen approach (for example therapeutic story writing, expressive arts, sandtray, movement) to a case study student relating to current or future setting
  6. Develop self-care strategies to support the wellbeing of self and colleagues working with vulnerable young people