Fostering Resilience in Classrooms and Self-regulation

Fostering Resilience in Classrooms is about understanding how adverse stress may occur in children, youth, and adults in the classroom. To be proactive in creating welcoming, caring, and relationship-based environments for everyone. Engaging in fostering resilience means understanding how stress impacts an individual's ability to show up in the classroom. It is about building knowledge and skills in adults in the school and community to identify a physiological response to sudden stress and the risks associated with long-term, adverse stress. It is also about ensuring all adults in the school work to respond effectively to individuals in high stress, to promote safety and predictability for everyone. 

Fostering Resilience in Classrooms incorporates culturally-safe and trauma-informed practices to empower children and youth to flourish as the capable people they are. It is about supporting adults in realizing, recognizing, and responding to students in distress and to avoid retraumatizing individuals while they’re employing interventions and practices. It is looking past behaviour to understand the underlying unmet needs, and to support that individual in feeling seen, heard and valued. Self-regulation is well positioned in a Fostering Resilience in Classrooms Framework to help children, youth and adults recognize and meet their needs.

Self-regulation is the ability to understand and manage reactions to stress, emotions and situations. It is a way of being, an awareness of ourselves, and it takes time and practice. 

When students are self-regulated they are in their learning mode, where their brains release healthy chemicals - dopamine, serotonin, endorphins - conducive to brain growth and development. They are able to think logically and rationalize. They can regulate (control) their emotions. Children who are able to self-regulate are much more likely to feel safe, be resilient, learn well, have healthy relationships, and be motivated at school.

Self-regulation understands that behaviour can be caused by stress and looks at the underlying cause of the stressors. Understanding why a student is responding in a certain way will help educators know how to best support the student. Through co-regulation, educators can teach students to recognize and attune to their own biology, and learn how to signal when they are moving away from learning and getting to a place where they can’t control their emotions.

Relationships are key to help students achieve regulated states. When we address regulation needs, we provide students with the strategies they need to manage stress in healthy ways, and equip students with the skills they need to be able to self-regulate.

Complex Needs

Education bodies must welcome all students within a common learning environment in the community in which the student resides and provide support through School-based Support Teams to enable teachers to meet the diverse needs of students, including those who experience significant barriers or challenges to learning.
Inclusive schooling supports are designed to meet specific types of challenges and are available to all students. As a result of offering education through inclusive schooling, no student is segregated or separated from their peers or community and all students are included, not just integrated. 

Inclusive schooling allows all students to be their most capable selves by meeting them where they are and extending an appropriate challenge level to maximize growth and potential.