This is the second of two posts all about what I'm learning that is working for literacy educators employing trauma-informed practices NOW. If you didn't see the first post, find it here. To sum up the first three practices before going into the next three, teachers are using bibliotherapy and trauma-informed book choices, defining the role of teachers within the trauma-informed network, and having students journal.
For this post, I'll describe some of the basic notions behind three more practices I'm seeing. These include attention to privacy and the establishment of healthy boundaries; the recognition that lots of race-based traumas go unnoticed in traditional literacy practices; and that literacy teachers are expanding what counts as appropriate to talk, write, and read about and also as instruction and assessment of learning.
Teachers and researchers are doing some amazing things when it comes to literacy pedagogy and trauma-informed practices. Not sure what that all looks like? Keep reading to learn how educators are currently employing trauma-informed practices in service of literacy instruction! Plus, stay tuned for several more posts elaborating on these ideas with links to research, tools, and social media.
I've been studying what trauma-informed literacy practices (TILPs- I just made that acronym up) look like in literacy classrooms and in the research literature right now. I'm also investigating how TILPs in education might look in the future. I've observed teachers through social media and direct conversations and am combing the literature, both past and current. What I'm seeing includes: trauma-informed book choices and practices of testimony and witness; journaling; attention to privacy and boundaries; increased and improved racial and cultural inclusion; and a wider definition of what counts as literacy. To clarify, the wider definition of literacy includes both multimodality and what counts as appropriate subjects of reading, writing, and discussion in schools.
Many of you are already incorporating trauma-informed practices with grace and sensitivity into your literacy instruction. Want to know what I'm seeing out there that aligns TIPs with literacy instruction? Keep reading for the first of two posts briefly outlining what TILPs are happening right now! Also, stay tuned for subsequent posts going deeper into each practice with external references and tools.
My name is Erin E. Silcox. I'm working on my Ph.D. in Literacy Education, focusing on the intersection of trauma and literacy. I want to deepen our base of knowledge about trauma-informed practices in schools and help teachers apply findings right now.