Children who have experienced adversity at an early age may often feel that a seemingly innocent situation threatens their emotional or physical safety, despite a teacher’s efforts to create a safe environment. The excessive stress levels children may encounter could cause them to react in unexpected ways.
In the face of this, the possible responses dictated by the brain are flight, attack, or blocking. In the school environment, this can translate into responses of inhibition, isolation, or disproportionate response that become visible through behaviours such as: rocking in chairs, being distracted in class, lack of attention, absenteeism, irritability, and getting angry. In these cases, it is necessary to be prepared and provide possible alternatives, avoiding improvisation or a reaction from an adult that may generate greater insecurity.
Some of the frequently-encountered circumstances that can be significant in causing high stress levels in these children include:
From the first stages of preschool to baccalaureate, families or caregivers often feel that they must continuously explain their children’s needs, especially concerning their behaviour or academic performance. The feeling families or caregivers usually express is that of living in a constant state of high alert because they cannot solve what is happening in the classroom. To be able to manage these situations, alongside close collaboration between family and school, the following is necessary:
The BRIGHTER FUTURE project has been funded with support from the European Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the authors, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.