Rachel Freeman of Safe Space Teaching is an educator that teaches with the heart. Having experience in both the inclusive and self-contained environment, she understands what students AND teachers experience day in and day out.
I was drawn to her blog about empathy. Rachel states, "For students affected by trauma, regardless of age, it can be extremely difficult to push past feelings of self-deprecation to reach those happy moments. In turn, they can struggle with empathizing with peers because their emotional processes have been disrupted. Students may truly not have natural empathy due to past traumas. Do we want these students to care about others? Of course we do! Yet, that’s not our first priority. So, how exactly do teachers support these students in building up to learning how to empathize with others? We teach self-compassion. By breaking down the feelings, language, and concepts of being kind to OURSELVES first, we have a better chance of transferring these skills."