“Essential reading” – Berry Street’s Take Two makes it into CHOICE

Berry Street’s Take Two service has been internationally recognised for its contribution to academic literature about developmental trauma and our clinical use of the Neurosequential Model of Therapeutics (NMT).

Continue reading ““Essential reading” – Berry Street’s Take Two makes it into CHOICE”

Using neuroscience to understand why some young people offend

By Jen Willis, Communications Consultant, Berry Street – Take Two 

A Judge and some magistrates now have a better understanding of developmental trauma and neglect, and how they might impact the behaviours of the young people they are sentencing.

Berry Street’s Take Two program recently delivered professional development for the South Australian Youth Court. The Court deals with children facing criminal charges, as well as child protection cases.

Continue reading “Using neuroscience to understand why some young people offend”

Why a baby’s mental health really matters

By Dr Nicole Milburn, Infant Mental Health Consultant & Jen Willis, Communications Consultant, Berry Street – Take Two 

As a community we often discuss the poor mental health of adults and young people, but rarely do we really look at the mental health of babies. This is unfortunate because it is the relationships and environment a baby experiences during infancy that often set the conditions for that baby’s mental health during later adolescence and adulthood.

What is mental health for a baby?
There are three key factors that define early mental health and wellbeing.

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How line, colour and shape can help a young person in crisis

By Jen Willis, Communications Consultant, Take Two – Berry Street.

“I really can’t draw. And I think that helps, because they can laugh at me.”

Not what you’d expect to hear from an art therapist.

Danni is a Take Two specialist working with very traumatised young people in crisis. She uses line, colour and shape to support her clinical work with young people who are admitted to Secure Welfare.

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Speech pathology and why it’s needed in Take Two

By Jen Willis, Communications Consultant, Berry Street – Take Two

Monica has recently joined Berry Street’s Take Two service as our Senior Speech Pathologist.

It’s thought that at least half of the children and young people we work with have communications difficulties. This can contribute to feelings of anxiety and frustration that might lead to social isolation, aggression or depression when they can’t understand what others are telling them or express themselves properly.

Continue reading “Speech pathology and why it’s needed in Take Two”

Integrating mindfulness and the body at school

By Jack Greig, Senior Trainer of the Berry Street Education Model

There are many reasons why we disconnect from our bodies. They can be the site of worry, shame or pain. Almost every choice we make shows up in the contours of our body at some stage.

The latest scientific research tells us that trauma lodges itself in the body. Psychiatrists and neuroscientists have discovered that trauma can change stress-related physiological systems, creating a “gnawing interior discomfort as their bodies are constantly bombarded with visceral warning signs… they learn to hide from themselves” (Van der Kolk, 2015).

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Perceptual Learning: Sensory Strategies for Classroom Regulation

By Jennifer Colechin, Senior Trainer of the Berry Street Education Model 

Why do kids love green slime? You may have wondered this to yourself on more than one occasion when you have had little sticky fingers shoved into your face as you pick bits of slime off your shirt. The reason is simple-the brains of our little people crave it.

The human brain is an amazing thing, capable of learning and retaining so much information. But, in order to learn, our brains must feel safe.

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Linking Unconditional Positive Regard and Teacher Wellbeing

By Jack Greig, Senior Trainer of the Berry Street Education Model

How can Unconditional Positive Regard support student healing as well as enhance teacher wellbeing?

There is evidence to suggest that Unconditional Positive Regard (UPR) not only supports students’ healing and learning at school, but also leads to enhanced teacher wellbeing.

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Why language matters: wellbeing is everyone’s business

Professor Lindsay Oades is the Director of the Centre for Positive Psychology at the University of Melbourne’s Melbourne Graduate School of Education. In this interview with Berry Street he provides a fascinating insight into why wellbeing literacy matters and how schools can help students learn it.

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Childhood Domains: what makes a good childhood?

This post is part of our series on what makes a good childhood.

The concept of a good childhood means many things to many people. Making a definitive assessment of a good childhood is difficult, but is a task that Berry Street feels is important to undertake for the sake of those children whose childhoods are blighted by violence, poverty, neglect, educational or any other disadvantage. Continue reading “Childhood Domains: what makes a good childhood?”

Early Childhood: the importance of the early years

This post is part of our series on what makes a good childhood.

Although intuition tells us how important a child’s early experiences are, the evidence is now overwhelming. A good childhood really is the foundation for a healthy adult life and cohesive society.

Over the previous decade, we have seen a greater focus on, and understanding of, the importance of childhood wellbeing, both from an objective and subjective perspective. It is now generally understood that children’s wellbeing is crucial, not just for their own lives, but for society as a whole. Continue reading “Early Childhood: the importance of the early years”

What makes a good childhood: Pre-pregnancy

We know that the foundations for a good childhood start well before conception. This may seem a little strange at first, but there are a number of key domains that are important for the future child to have functioning well enough in their prospective parents.

By Dr. Nicole Milburn, Senior Manager for Infant Mental Health and Developmental Consultancies, Take Two

Some of you might remember from my guest blog in late July that I promised to write a series of posts about the importance of a good infancy for a good childhood.

In the meantime I have been diverted by other Institute activities, not least of which was the national speaking tour of Dr. Bruce D. Perry, Child Psychiatrist and Neuroscientist. Dr. Perry and his colleagues at the ChildTrauma Academy have made an enormous contribution to our understanding of the impact of trauma on development. They have clearly articulated that the brain develops in a sequential way, from the most primitive functions to the most complex. This means it is vital that we understand what happens and when it happens within the timeline of the developing brain so that we can understand the impact of events and what to then do about it. This model also gives the appropriate emphasis on very early development as laying the foundation for life.

A couple pre-pregnancyWe know, however, that the foundations for a good childhood start well before conception. This may seem a little strange at first, but there are a number of key domains that are important for the future child to have functioning well enough in their prospective parents. Continue reading “What makes a good childhood: Pre-pregnancy”