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Back To School!

Jen Martin, Distinguished Teacher (Owner)
A+ Academic Coaching and Tutoring, LLC

Returning to school can generate a multitude of feelings. For students it can be the sadness that summer vacation has ended. As a child, I saw it as a fresh start; a way of looking forward. It was a new start for everyone.

As a teacher, having all of the supplies organized and ‘at the ready’ for the new set of students was an awesome feeling. With all of my years of experience, there was nothing more exciting than seeing the students walk into your classroom; ready to begin the new school year.

As a parent, I was as almost as nervous as my child. I wanted them to have the correct supplies and be able to complete their homework assignments independently. Looking back; I was probably more nervous than my children. Reaching out to their new teacher in a positive way was the best advice I was ever given... (example: asking if the teacher needs supplies, etc.).

The start of a new school year, can mean a lot of different things to parents, students, and educators. In my opinion if everyone works together, great progress can be made. Don’t hesitate to contact me. I will be happy to help.

Walmart Shopping You Matter Sign Classroom
School Supplies Markers and Schedule

 Academic Coaching and Tutoring, LLC

By Jen Martin Distinguish Teacher, (Ret)

By flying in "V" formation, a flock of geese adds at least 71 percent greater flying range than if each bird flew on its own. People who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going more quickly and easily because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.

When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone — and quickly gets back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird in front.  When the head goose gets tired, it rotates back in the wing and another goose flies point.

Geese honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep up their speed.

When a goose gets sick or is wounded by gunshot, and falls out of formation, two other geese fall out with that goose and follow it down to lend help and protection. They stay with the fallen goose until it is able to fly or until it dies, and only then do they launch out on their own, or with another formation to catch up with their group.

What Is Trauma?

Trauma is an emotional response to an intense event that threatens or causes harm. The harm can be physical or emotional, real or perceived, and it can threaten the child or someone close to him or her. Trauma can be the result of a single event, or it can result from exposure to multiple events over time.

Potentially traumatic events may include:

  • Abuse (physical, sexual, or emotional)
  • Neglect
  • Effects of poverty (such as homelessness or not having enough to eat)
  • Being separated from loved ones
  • Bullying
  • Witnessing harm to a loved one or pet (e.g., domestic or community violence)
  • Natural disasters or accidents
  • Unpredictable parental behavior due to addiction or mental illness

In my experience as an educator, vulnerable youth come from a variety of backgrounds and often exhibit a range of negative behaviors.  At times the children are mislabeled with different diagnoses. They can include a conduct disorder; oppositional defiant disorder and ADHD. The child may or may not receive interventions at school and possible placement into special education.

How You Can Help?

  1. Be Patient and Listen

    It seems simple.  When a child has undergone a form of trauma, they WANT someone to hear their story. It is a big step on a child's journey toward recovery.

  2. Advocate

    Speak up for your mentee. Model the appropriate way to stand up for yourself. They probably aren't used to having a voice.

  3. Focus on the Positives

    Remind the child of the good things he or she does. A great activity is to create a list of all the terrific things they can do! (Example - play football, write, etc.) As the child writes his/her list; you create yours.

    During my first year as a special education teacher, a boy walked into my classroom.  He started crying. He told me he was in the 'dummy' class again.  This young man was very smart.  At that point I started to question labeling.

Are schools re traumatizing the traumatized child?

- mentoring.org
- bridgewayrehab.org
- acestoohigh.com
- childwelfare.gov


Jen Martin, Distinguished Teacher (Owner)
A+ Academic Coaching and Tutoring, LLC


Merriam-Webster’s (8/2018) defines the word fear as an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation of awareness of danger.

Fear has different meanings to different people with school. For the student, it’s the anxiety of having friends in class or sitting with the right group of kids in the cafeteria. For parents it translates to the distress of a child’s safety and happiness. For teachers, it’s the dread and consternation of implementing the core curriculum to the individual student. How can learning be accomplished with all of the emotion?

Fear Has No Place In Our Schools WE ARE CHANGE