ERIC Number: ED258131
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Oct
Reference Count: 0
The Child in Grief: Implications for Teaching.
Hare, Jan; And Others
The purpose of this paper is to increase teachers' understanding of children's conceptualizations of death to enable them to respond to the symptoms of grief in both early and middle childhood. John Bowlby's theoretical framework of childhood mourning is elaborated, and research on teachers' facilitation of children's grief is briefly noted. The developmental stages in children's conceptualizations of death are reviewed, and the nature of their grief in relation to the loss of a parent is explored. Symptoms of grief for children ages 3 to 5 and ages 6 to 11 are detailed. Nine suggestions for teachers supporting a grieving child are offered including: (1) be aware of personal attitudes toward and experiences with death; (2) allow children to openly discuss their loss; (3) use small deaths such as the death of a classroom pet to help children understand the concept of death; (4) use direct and child-appropriate language to provide information about death; (5) be sensitive to delayed or subtle grief responses; (6) create an open, continuing opportunity for the expression of grief; (7) provide reassurance; (8) educate parents about children's needs to participate in death rituals; and (9) be ready to respond to children's unexpressed guilt. (MCF)
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council on Family Relations (San Francisco, CA, October 16-20, 1984).