Compiled for public use by Laura Simms.
The Healing Story Alliance is grateful to Diane Wyzga for sending these resources collected by Morgan Adams. They are for those working with children and parents affected by the Connecticut tragedy. The increasing senseless violence culminating in the terrifying events that occurred yesterday affect all of us. You may find this information to be of use. Please share it with others.
- Helping your children manage distress in the aftermath of a shooting
- Managing your distress in the aftermath of a shooting
- Five Questions on the Tucson, Ariz., Shootings for Psychologist Joel Dvoskin, PhD, scroll to question number 3.
- Helpful Hints for School Emergency Management: Psychological First Aid (PFA) for Students and Teachers: Listen, Protect, Connect – Model & Teach. (PDF File)
- Listen, Protect, Connect – Model and Teach: Psychological First Aid for Teacher and Students (PDF File)
- After a Loved One Dies – How Children Grieve ~ And how parents and other adults can support them
- School Crisis Guide ~ Help and Healing in a Time of Crisis
NOURISHING THE HEARTS OF OUR CHILDREN – STORIES IN DIFFICULT TIMES
Visit the Healing Story Alliance website where you will find stories, suggestions and commentaries about the use of story in times of strong emotion and crisis. For full versions of 36 tales go to LauraSimms.com
Story Circles and Listening – simple instructions prepared by Laura Simms
Reading: The Way of Council by Jack Zimmerman; The Soul of Education by Rachael Kessler and the PassageWorks Institute – The Engaged Classroom.
One of the most powerful tools we have is to listen. If you are in a school or organization with children, a potent and safe way to let children express their feelings is by creating a Story Circle.
- Set up guidelines: speak from the heart in the first person; avoid criticism of others; listen without responding; and keep what you have to say as short as possible.
- Choose a “talking stick” or what you would like to pass around. It could be a seashell, a flower or something that everyone decides on and makes before the circle.
- Each person has a chance to speak – going around in the circle. If you do not want to speak, please hold the object and offer either a prayer or a moment of silence before passing it on.
- Follow the circle with a circle of wishes for those who were harmed, their families and friends and even the victims and their family.
- How to Talk to Children by Clarissa Pinkola Estes.
- Post Trauma Recovery Protocol by Clarissa Pinkola Estes.
- Throw Open Your Good Heart by Clarissa Pinkola Estes.
- Vicarious Trauma – What Happens to Those Who Support Victims – thank you to Bob Kanegis for sharing this link!
- Helping Children With Scary News – thank you to Mike Seliger for bringing this to our attention!
- Magic Fish Pond Caregiver’s Guide (PDF) – thank you to Lorna Czarnota for sharing this resource with us!
- A National Tragedy: Helping Children Cope – thank you to Karen Chace for bringing this to our attention!
- Coping with Violence– a list of handy resources for parents, educators, families shared by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
This is the last paragraph of a short but potent article, How I Healed from a School Shooting, in Elephant Journal (out of Boulder, Colorado) written by Cassandra Smith who was present in Columbine 13 years ago.
No one is going to be able to explain what happened today in a way that makes it okay. We will not find comfort by learning the shooter’s motivations, and we will not find comfort in screaming for stricter gun control.
We will find comfort in each other.
We can heal by grieving together, talking together and providing an ear for anyone who is hurting. We find comfort in knowing our feelings of grief and confusion are not only our own.
I know I will never fully understand what made the young men at Columbine or Sandy Hook decide to take the lives of innocent people. But I also know that I do not need to understand in order to heal. We heal by showing our suffering to others and giving others space to suffer with us.
Together, we can and will get through this.
Please share any additional resources that you feel may be helpful as comments or contact the Resources, Research and Reviews host: Mary K. Clark.
12/15/12 – Edited – mkc
12/18/12 – Edited to add Karen Chace’s resource and Cassandra Smith’s quote – mkc
1/4/13 – Edited to add Lorna Czarnota’s PDF resource – mkc
2/9/13 – Edited to add NAEYC resource page – mkc
4/4/13 – Edited to fix duplicate links – mkc