How Educators Learn from Awareness

This is the final introductory blog post to The Path Forward in Challenging Times: Building Resilience through the Practice of Awareness, our collaborative workshop with The Sky Center. Facilitated by Lisa Faithorn, PhD, Erin, Doerwald, LCSW, CMT-P, Randle Charles, and Grietje Laga, the workshop invites educators, administrators, and service professionals to practice awareness, reflection, and learn how to respond rather than react to school and community based challenges while enriching their experiences of life.

In our interview with Lisa and Erin, they share what educators, school administrators, and service professionals can expect to learn in experiencing The Path Forward. We look forward to sharing awareness and reflection with you all tomorrow. Learn more by visiting the workshop listing.

Erin: We get a lot of feedback when we go into school communities. Mainly, educators didn’t sign up to be social workers or counselors or to hold space for students who are experiencing trauma symptoms. The Sky Center had to say I know but, unfortunately, this is a new skill-set that educators are having to bolster themselves with, because it’s the new landscape that educators are finding themselves in.

Clinicians, social workers, and counselors, when they get their graduate degrees, build resiliency practices for their profession as training. I think it’s a gap in terms of the world of education where being able to build practices for one’s own resiliency is a missing link. Building resilience hasn’t been part of the traditional educator toolkit for well-being that is offered in their pedagogy.

In this collaboration with the Academy, The Sky Center is hoping to bring awareness and knowledge of resiliency practices to educators, administrators, and social workers. We especially want to add to the educator’s toolkit for well-being in order to fill that gap. We want to say here is what we know as clinicians about how to take care of ourselves in the face of vicarious trauma, which is part of our job. We signed up for that. Let us share with you all what works for us to fill in that gap between these two professions, educators and clinicians, because, unfortunately, educators these days are being exposed to the kinds of things that typically only clinicians or social workers or counselors were exposed to.

Lisa: At the Academy the work that we do is not therapy. It’s habilitative rather than rehabilitative. We’re all moving towards doing our best to support ourselves and one another to thrive and to really experience sustained well-being.

Erin: Yes, and I think we’re also wanting to move beyond siloism. Everybody moves in their silo within their area of expertise, but we should move beyond separateness into supportiveness. Siloism is the word that keeps coming up for me in terms of my own sense of integration within our experiential selves and then integration among fields, practices, and perspectives.

We want to get to a place of non-binaries. All of these fields, such as social justice and environmentalism for instance, I feel are coming closer and closer together where we’re recognizing that we’re all after the same thing. We’ve been so isolated in our little silos, and I think we’re trying to expand, integrate, and connect all towards the same human cause or earthly causes.