The following books and tools are suggested resources for teachers:
Grief Comes to Class by Majel Gliko-Bradenis. The purpose of this book is to assist school personnel, primarily the classroom teacher, in being a positive, significant caregiver for the bereaved students. This book is also meant to aid parents of grieving students and to provide help for the student as she/he re-enters the school environment following the death experience.
Helping the Grieving Student, developed by the Dougy Center. This guidebook is an essential resource for elementary, middle and high school teachers who encounter a grieving student. Drawn from stories, suggestions and insight shared by grieving students and their families, this book explores practical tips for telling students about a death; responding to and supporting a grieving student; how to address students’ questions and concerns; how to not only take care of the students, but also of oneself; and when to seek additional professional help.
Teacher’s Guide to the Grieving Student by Hospice of Lancaster County. Although the focus of this booklet is on loss through death, the principles apply to any type of loss students may encounter. Many adults feel uncomfortable or unsure about how to most effectively support students who are impacted by loss. The intent of this booklet is to provide adults with a foundation to draw from and help all grieving students.
Feeling Hearts from Grief Watch. This soft bag contains 20 small ceramic hearts of varying textures and colors designed to provide an opportunity to express emotions. Pass them around a support group, or share them with a child and ask them to talk about their ‘feeling heart’.
My Memory Bag This sturdy tote contains: a teddy bear, a star shaped stress ball, a yo-yo for expressing ups and downs, seeds to plant in honor of your loved one, and the book A Bunch of Balloons. Add your own books and special things to complete this memory bag.
Great Valentine’s Day idea from a student’s mother: I am grateful for my daughter’s grade school teacher. She gathered my daughter and three other students yesterday who have all lost a parent. They made valentines together, and then she gave them each a memory box. They can put reminders, mementos and photos in there of their missing dads and moms.