Cynthia Trapanese, a teacher who spent 17 years as a pediatric chaplain, observes that we are all grieving right now, and that adults need to be aware of their own feelings of loss in order to help children and families effectively. During this period of isolation, children miss not only extended family, especially grandparents, but also their friends, classrooms, and the details of their school days. The impact of prolonged separation from school will be long-lasting. Cynthia is holding webinars for teachers and parents, and shares tips and resources with us.



00:00-01:05 Intros

01:06-02:05 Defining “loss”

02:05-03:37 Helping children stay connected while in physical isolation

03:37-05:36 Examples of what loss looks like in children’s lives

05:36-07:21 Responding to children’s expressions of how they are feeling

07:22-08:43 The importance of not trying to “fix”

08:43-10:52 Losses layered onto other Adverse Childhood Experiences

10:52-13:25 When adults don’t have answers

13:26-15:15 Being helpful to children when adults themselves are grieving and frightened

15:15-17:35 How the New School of SF is supporting teachers and parents how other schools can support teachers

17:35-20:32 Parents’ concern about students keeping up with academics during this time

20:32-22:06 How this experience  can help reflection about the most important aspects of education

22:07-24:52 How teaching at Institute for Humane Education (IHE) impacts thoughts on the pandemic and impact on children

24:53-26:18 Integrating humane education about animals into 1st grade teaching

26:18-28:08 Integrating IHE “solutionaries” program into 1st grade

28:08-29:30 Outro


Click here to see the full transcription of the episode. 


Soundtrack by Podington Bear

Photo by Janko Ferlic from Pexels