Marlee Bunch and Brittany Collins join the Phenomenal Teaching Podcast to discuss the intersection of Grief-Responsive Teaching and Anti-Bias/Anti-Racist (ABAR) Teaching with Michelle Morris Jones. Developing our collective understanding of how to support students who have experienced trauma and loss increases our ability to develop classroom and school communities that support agency, equity and understanding as described in the PEBC Teaching Framework. Listen in as Marlee and Brittany share startling statistics, incredible resources, and practical strategies to support students in their healing journeys. Grief-Responsive Teaching and ABAR Teaching are distinctly different, yet have strong mutually supportive similarities. Marlee and Brittany share how paying attention to environment, connection and curriculum provide students with a safe place to land and thrive.
When supporting students who are experiencing grief or healing from trauma, Brittany encourages educators to:
- Cultivate environments that are consistent and safe;
- Create opportunities for students to connect with one another in authentic ways; and
- Develop a curriculum that is steeped in choice so that students can process loss through shared literary experiences, writing, and personal narratives.
When developing ABAR school communities, Marlee encourages educators to:
- Attract and retain BIPOC teachers so that the school environment honors all cultures and races;
- Make connections with colleagues who don’t look like you to learn about other’s experiences; and
- Develop a curriculum that is steeped in creativity, art, poetry, and allows for text pairing to explore a variety of perspectives.
Access the mentioned resources here.
Marlee is an educator with over 15 years of teaching experience. She holds two graduate degrees, and is currently working on her doctoral degree from the University of Illinois. Her study illustrates the impact the long history of segregation, Brown v. Board of Education, and desegregation efforts had on the teaching experiences of Black female educators. Check out Marlee’s zine, “Unlearning the Hush: The Empowering Narratives of Black Educators and Mentors.”
Brittany’s work explores the impacts of grief, loss, and trauma in the school system, as well as how innovative pedagogies– from inquiry-based learning to identity development curricula– can create conditions supportive of all learners. Brittany is the author of Learning from Loss: A Trauma-Informed Approach to Supporting Grieving Students, which was published in 2021.
The “Phenomenal Teaching Podcast” is brought to you by Public Education & Business Coalition (PEBC) and is intended to elevate the strands of the PEBC Teaching Framework illustrated in Wendy Ward Hoffer’s book, Phenomenal Teaching. Those strands include community, planning, workshop, thinking strategies, discourse, and assessment. Thank you for joining us this season as we strive to share the stories of educators who are creating scaffolds for each and every student to ensure that classrooms and schools are places where agency, equity, and understanding can flourish.