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Mental Health Month

How Educators Can Help Children Exposed to Trauma

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Date and time
Monday, November 28, 2005

This forum, specially designed for school leaders, teachers, counselors, and community interventionists, discusses potential student and family reactions to trauma, as well as immediate and sustained ways for assisting in their continued emotional and educational development. The panelists discuss how, in the wake of traumatic events, educators often grapple with understanding and responding to the needs of affected children.

Catherine Ayoub is a developmental and licensed counseling psychologist with research and practice interests in the impact of childhood trauma across the life span, and the development and implementation of prevention and intervention systems to combat risk and promote resilience with emphasis on young children. Ayoub also holds an appointment at Harvard Medical School and is senior staff at the Law and Psychiatry Service at Massachusetts General Hospital, where she serves as a forensic mental health expert for children and adults involved with the legal system.
Jesse is the Playmaking Program Director of Project Joy and the Assistant Director of the Children's Trauma Recovery Foundation. He received an undergraduate degree in psychology at Umass Boston and a master's degree in education with a focus on at-risk child development and intervention theory at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He has been working with young children and teachers with Project Joy in the Metro-Boston are for the past eight years. Jesse's responsibilities with the organization include recruiting teachers, coordinating logistics, and training for the Project Joy retreats. He also conducts research regarding the impact of stress on children and the healthy benefits of play. Having grown up in and around Boston, Jesse is an avid local sports fan. His mother claims he was reading the "Football Notes" section of the Sunday Globe at the early age of 6. Jesse is reigning champion of his fantasy football league and is thankful for the prowess of Bill Belichick and the strength of the 07' Red Sox starting rotation. He is a lover of music and you might see him playing loudly while riding through the city or dancing at on of his favorite night spots.
Kathleen McCartney is the Dean of the Faculty of Education and the Gerald S. Lesser Professor in Early Childhood Development. She is a developmental psychologist whose research informs theoretical questions on early experience as well as policy questions on child care, early childhood education, and poverty. Since 1989, McCartney has served as a principal investigator on the National Institute of Child Heath and Human Development (NICHD) Study of Early Child Care & Youth Development, the findings from which were published by Guilford in 2005 book, *Child Care and Child Development*. McCartney is a co-editor of *The Handbook of Early Child Development*, published by Blackwell in 2006 as well as *Best Practices in Quantitative Methods for Developmentalists*, published by the Society for Research in Child Development in 2006. McCartney's work has been informed by her experience as the director of the University of New Hampshire Child Study & Development Center, a laboratory school for children from birth through kindergarten. Kathleen McCartney has been named a Fellow by the American Psychological Association, the American Psychological Society, and the American Educational Research Association.
Gerald Lesser's interests are in child development, the effects of visual media on children, and the design of education programs ranging from television broadcasting to cable to videocassettes. He is also interested in the effects of different cultural backgrounds on the development of patterns of mental abilities of children. He was one of the principal architects in the creation of the PBS television series *Sesame Street*. He is currently consulting on the Palestinian-Israeli coproduction of *Sesame Street*. He received his PhD from Yale University.