Chapter 14: Managing Loss, Death, and Grief

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Chapter 14: Managing Loss, Death, and Grief. Olivia Morris and Chelsea Hilbert. Importance of Teaching. Everyone goes through it. Today the living are isolated from the dying. Many parents isolate children from a dying person and the funeral. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Olivia Morris and Chelsea HilbertChapter 14: Managing Loss, Death, and GriefEveryone goes through it.Today the living are isolated from the dying.Many parents isolate children from a dying person and the funeral.Death portrayed in the media is often misleading and confusing.Many parents do not feel comfortable talking about death.To allow children to express their feelings.Importance of Teaching1 in 20 children will lose a parent by the age of 18.1 in 3 children will spend their first 18 years with one parent.1 in 5 families move each year.Almost every child will experience the death of a pet, friend or relative.PrevalenceAges 3 to 5Children dont understand the finality of death.View dead as being able to eat, work, laugh, and cry as if alive.Children often seem matter of fact or callous about death.Because of this they see no reason to grieve.Adults should not explain death to this age in terms of sleep or vacation.

Developmental Stages for Understanding Death Stage 1Ages 5 to 9.Have understanding of finality.Believe that an outside source such as bogeyman or death man causes death.Many guilt feelings are associated with death.Teachers need to be aware of these guilt feeling and try to alleviate them.Developmental Stages of Understanding Death Stage 2Ages 9 and older.Fully Understand the finality of death.Know that it is something that happens within the body and happens to everyone.Associate death with other, old people.Feelings expressed in such ways as acting out, crying, anger, or self-injurious behavior.Developmental Stages of Understanding Death Stage 3Grief is the psychological and sometimes physical response to the death of a loved one or to the loss or longing of someone due to transition.2 types of grief:Low-grief- have already grieved prior to death.High-grief- more emotional and lasts longer because of no preparation for death.Three stages of grief.Stages of GriefBegins after hearing about the death of a loved one.Includes crying, confusion, stress, and disbelief.Can typically last up to two weeks after the death.Denial is the reason that many act calm during a funeral and this should not be mistaken as acceptance of the death.Grievers desperately need support from friends and loved ones.Stage 1 Denial, Shock, and DisbeliefBegins after survivors have recognized the reality of death.Usually lasts up to one year.Feeling experienced are sadness, depression, guilt, preoccupation with thoughts of the deceased, anger, apathy, and numbness.Not uncommon to experience loss of appetite, insomnia, crying spells, and restlessness. Children are usually angry, appear selfish and act younger than they are.Stage 2-Dispair, Numbness, Guilt, Sadness and ApathyBegins approximately one year to 15 months after the death.Still depression during this stage.Survivors should be allowed to express their grief and not be asked to repress it.Recalls positive memories of the deceased.Survivor accepts death and tries to move on with life.

Stage 3-Recovery and Resolution.Important for school professionals to understand to help children grieve.Grief is normal, natural, and a healthy response to loss.Grief is a unique, lifelong process for everyone who have experienced a loss.Everyone has the capability to heal in a supportive and emotionally safe environment.3 Dimensions of GriefDenialAngerBargaining DepressionAcceptanceThese stages should not be evaluated as good or bad.One of the biggest fear of dying people is the fear of being alone.

Stages of DyingIt is important for teachers to be honest and open.Teachers should be as factual as possible.Teachers should avoid providing personal values no controversial issues related to death.Teachers should be especially good and supportive listeners.Teachers should ask children to explain what they have learned about death during class.Teaching about Loss, Death, and GriefTeachers will have to deal with this topic and should be prepared.Best to discuss death before it occurs. There are several guidelines to remember when discussing death with elementary and middle school students.Teachers role when a student or a students relative is dying or diesIt is important for school personnel to understand how to help children deal with disasters and traumatic events.Children feel a loss of control.They experience a loss of stability.They are very self-centered.Teachers should practice emergency procedures.Teachers should try to focus on some positive events surrounding the event.Teachers should try to maintain a routine for children.Dealing with Disasters or Traumatic EventsSymptoms-ClinginessAggressivenessWithdrawal from activities or friendsIncreased fight with friendsSchool of avoidanceLoss of interest and poor concentration in schoolRegressive behaviorHeadaches or other physical complaintsDepressionFear about safetyDifficulty sleeping because of nightmares.Dealing with Disasters or Traumatic EventsSuicide is the third leading cause of death of 10 to 14 year olds.It is first important for teachers to understand the risk and protective factors associated with youth suicide.Schools Role When Handling a SuicideThings that can enhance resilience to suicide.Includes:Easy access to help for emotional and mental health problems.Restricted access to lethal means.Family and community support.Learned skills and problem solving, conflict resolution, and nonviolent handling of arguments.Cultural and religious beliefs that discourage suicide and support self-preservation.Protective FactorsChanges in physical appearance.Changes in eating or sleeping habits.Apathy about school.Outbursts of anger, mood swings, and drastic changes in behavior.Withdrawal from family, friends, and social activities.Increased use of alcohol and other drugs.Recent death of a loved one.Preoccupation with death.Giving away of prized possessions.Direct and indirect statements about suicide.Depression.Warning Signs for SuicideDont dismiss school or encourage funeral attendance during school hours.Dont dedicate a memorial to the deceased.Dont have a large school assembly.Do give the students factsDo emphasize prevention and everyones role.Do provide individual and group counseling.Do emphasize that no on is to blame for the suicide.Do emphasize that help is available and there are alternatives to suicide.Do contact the family of the deceased.Do ask students to make a plan for after school and the evening.Dos and Donts When a Student Commits SuicideCompassionate Friendshttp://www.compassionatefriends.org/home.aspxPublic Broadcast Servicehttp://www.pbs.org/teachers/Suicide Hotlineshttp://suicidehotlines.com/westvirginia.html

WebsitesThe Fall of Freddie the Leaf by Leo BuscagliaEverett Andersons Goodbye by L. CliftonJenny is Scared! By Carol ShumanCharlottes Web by E.B. WhiteLiterature for Children

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