Trauma and Growth Mindset

Do past traumatic experiences build resilience and Growth Mindset?

Research by Fernandez et al. suggests that this is not the case. The experience of prior traumatic events makes one more vulnerable to PTSD and/or depression when faced with a new trauma. But learning to develop a Growth Mindset can help to overcome traumatic events.

What can assist children as they deal with trauma and stress?

  • supportive relationships with caring adults - as teachers we are uniquely placed to offer this.
  • developing a sense of control over their lives, as opposed to a sense of helplessness.

What does this mean in the classroom?

  • Promote optimism through maintaining high expectations (remember CTE)
  • Voice and choice - create a variety of opportunities for expression and offer different possible pathways through a topic
  • Differentiate - don’t expect the same from all students; have relevant and appropriately challenging tasks for each student which will allow them to feel that they are coping.

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