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COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL Trauma-informed teaching is not a critique of what was prescribed in the past. It is a research-based approach that can make teaching more enjoyable and enhance academic achievement. Most importantly, it lights a path to a brighter future for the children we teach. Children living with uncertainty and insecurity may have great difficulty focusing on learn- ing. You may be the anchor needed to make sense out of their world. The opportunity to make a difference in children’s lives has never been greater than it is today with trauma-informed education. For some students, you may provide the only supportive relationship in their lives, helping them begin to develop their full potential. Using the Activities The heart of this book is a collection of group activities and personal strat- egies that make it possible for children to engage in self-healing and self- empowerment. These activities will enrich the learning process and help all students learn more deeply. Through this process, they can integrate their life experiences into their learning and begin to make sense out of a world that often seems threatening. My sincere goal is that through the recommendations of this book, both you and the children you teach and care for will find renewed hope and delight as together we embrace the future. One caution to note: The activities in this book are not intended to place teachers in a counselor’s or therapist’s role. Some children may need to be referred for assessment or individual counseling following the use of these activities if the behavioral issues do not subside. The activities in this book are never to be used in place of mandated reporting of suspected child abuse or neglect. Introduction to COPYRIGHTED Trauma-Informed Early Childhood Education MATERIAL 3