Committee for Children Blog

Talking to Children About Terrorism

How can parents and those who regularly interact with children best communicate about terrorism and other violent tragedies? Committee for Children, creator of the Second Step social-emotional learning program, has compiled resources to assist with and help navigate these tough conversations.

Read More


A Parent’s Guide to Role-Playing Bullying Reports

Bullying is serious. Make sure your child knows that it is important to practice reporting the way he or she would do it in real life. When you and your child practice giving and receiving reports, you’ll have the skills and confidence to handle bullying if it really happens. When your child reports bullying, it is most important to really listen and ensure your child’s safety. The following are steps you can take when your child comes to you about a bullying situation.

Read More


Expand Your Bullying Prevention Toolkit with Social-Emotional Learning

Every year schools and communities across the country unite in their bullying prevention efforts during the month of October for National Bullying Prevention Month. Does this mean that if you focus on bullying prevention for one month you’re done? Not at all! This month is meant to jump-start continued efforts to prevent bullying. And social-emotional learning can make a great addition to the toolkit that helps you do this.

Read More


Book Review: Not in Room 204

When a teacher goes beyond a standard “stranger danger” lesson to tell her class it's more likely to be someone a child knows who touches a child inappropriately and that she would help anyone who had a touching problem, this is just the information and encouragement young Regina needs to report her own scary secret.

Read More


He Just Disclosed in Class! What Do I Do?

The goal of the Child Protection Unit lessons is to develop students' ability to recognize, report, and refuse unsafe or sexually abusive situations. During the lessons, students will hear stories and scenarios about children in unsafe and potentially abusive situations who use their skills to stay safe. This may prompt students to disclose information about similar situations in their own lives, sometimes in the middle of a lesson in front of the entire class! Needless to say, this can put teachers in an uncomfortable position, and in the moment it's hard to know how to respond.… Read More


The Second Step Child Protection Unit: A New Approach to Protecting Children from Abuse and Neglect

Committee for Children has long been at the forefront of the effort to prevent child sexual abuse. In fact child sexual abuse prevention was the goal of Committee for Children's first published curriculum, the Talking About Touching program. Committee for Children has come a long way since then, bringing the power of social-emotional learning into schools around the world with the Second Step program and helping prevent bullying with the Second Step: Bullying Prevention Unit. Much has also changed in the field of child abuse prevention since the release of the Talking About Touching program, so Committee for Children recently returned to its roots and created the Child Protection Unit, a new Second Step unit designed to help protect children from sexual abuse and other forms of abuse and neglect.

Read More


Four Tips for Creating a Safe and Supportive Classroom

It's Monday morning, and your student Charlie storms in, pushing people and throwing things. With Charlie, there are lots of days like this, especially after the weekend. But what you do next can make a big difference to Charlie's day, to your day, and to his overall experience in school. Senior Program Developer Bridgid Normand gives four practical tips for creating an environment in which Charlie and all your other students can learn.

Read More


Welcome Wave of Change: Positive Discipline and SEL in Schools

I bet you can easily conjure up an image of a school teacher rapping the knuckles of a naughty girl with a ruler. Or a principal paddling the bottom of a boisterous boy. For a long time, this was how students were disciplined in school. They were physically punished with rulers, straps, paddles, or hands. Or shamed by being made to stand in the corner, wear a dunce cap, or write lines on the board. Perhaps you think these harsh, punitive discipline practices are a relic of a past, something we now only see in old movies or on episodes of The Simpsons. But in 19 states it’s still legal to use corporal punishment in schools.1 And since the late 1980s, zero-tolerance policies have resulted in thousands of students being excluded from schools, their right to an education stripped away for infractions sometimes as minor as chewing gum.

Read More