This post is sponsored by WE Teachers, made possible by Walgreens. All opinions are my own.
As educators, we are always striving to be better. We want to learn more so that we can be the absolute best we can be. And we want to be able to do it on a budget. Ideally a budget of zero! Good news: there’s some free professional development all around building trauma-informed schools and classrooms. Even better news: it’s short and digestible and can be done at your own pace.
Now if you’re reading this as a school counselor, you might feel like you’ve already got this stuff down pat. You really might! A lot of this is in our wheelhouse. It’s what we think about and act on every day at work. That said, this will still be useful to you. It is so easy to “just know” really important things without knowing the best way to communicate these things to your teachers. When I read or watch amazing PD, I find it’s much easier for me to succinctly share the information with my faculty. It also provides me more context, ideas, and facts.
WE Teachers is a branch of the WE charity organization. They worked together with We Are Teachers and Walgreens to provide this training and giveaway. Their goal is to empower educators by providing professional learning, recognizing educators going the distance, and providing a helpful online community.
The FREE Training
There are 7 modules in total at the WE Teachers Hub which are a combo of readings and videos, all tied to a developing a trauma-informed classroom. They include both the theoretical and the practical.
- Introduction to Trauma-Informed Classrooms
- Mental Well Being
- Pandemic-Informed Community
- Diversity and Inclusion
- Youth Violence
I was curious about who actually wrote the PD modules. Sometimes, it turns out that “experts” don’t have real experience in the area. Thankfully, that is NOT the case here. I learned that WE Schools’ Director of Education is a former classroom teacher. She also worked alongside Mental Health America in creating the content. All that to say that these modules are legit. They include scenarios and stats (with sources!).
In addition to the free PD, they are hosting the WE Teachers Award. Winners receive a $500 gift card to support their class and student needs. There will be 1000 recipients! Educators can apply themselves or nominate amazing colleagues (and yes, counselors are included!). Do you go above and beyond? Do you know someone amazing at their job that could use this boost? You can apply or nominate someone here.
Imagine getting to fund a supply pantry for families (laundry detergent, deodorant, canned food, etc.). Or have fresh markers for kiddos in your office to use (and yes, they have Mr. Sketch!). Notebooks for small groups. Stuffed animals and condolence cards to send home when families have experienced a loss. Stickers and trinkets for kiddos who need tangible behavior incentives. Tools for a calm corner. There’s a LOT you could do with it!