Can a teacher Get Some Help Here?

Meet Ms. Garcia as she walks us through Momentous Institute’s Strategic Intervention Model that equipped her with tools to help her student, Sarah.

By Momentous Institute | Dec 05, 2019
Can Ateacher Get Some Help Blog

“I struggled developing a relationship with students who were exhibiting behavior challenges,” says Cristina Garcia, prekindergarten 4 teacher at Momentous Institute. Ms. Garcia is one example of many educators who face obstacles every day given the limited strategies available for working with struggling students. After hearing of these frustrations, Momentous Institute developed an approach to support teachers in any school. What approach was created? The Strategic Intervention Model (SIM).

The model is a simple and effective process that brings together Momentous Institute’s educators with clinical staff as they seek to bridge the gap between education and mental health. Educators meet with their teaching teams, administrators and school counselors in monthly meetings to provide new tools for educators to use with students navigating challenges. Ms. Garcia was one of the first recipients to walk through the model, “I had a student who experienced distress during transitions...when I’d meet monthly for the SIM meetings with colleagues, I’d highlight some of the student’s progress and receive new strategies [from the team] to try out with her…”

Picture Sarah, a four-year-old girl who does not cope with change easily and shows intense emotions during class. At the monthly SIM meeting, colleagues would listen to Ms. Garcia recount some of Sarah’s challenging moments that month. One of the key strategies a colleague suggested in the meeting was for Ms. Garcia to give Sarah a journal that she could carry around, travel with and write in anytime she needed to express her emotions. Sarah enjoyed the journal and would write or draw in it often as she navigated daily circumstances.

The heartbeat of the SIM approach is to focus on relationships and provide support for any obstacles that come up in the classroom. The collaboration between clinicians and educators at Momentous Institute is focused on creating a safe space for educators to gain support in their classrooms so all children can achieve success. This model is available to any school who is interested, and it is free! [Download SIM manual here]

Ms. Garcia affirms, “I now have a bigger bank of strategies for when we find ourselves “stuck.” My team and I continue to bring up strategies that were brought up in our SIM meetings when a student shows signs of a behavior challenge. I don’t feel like I need to have all the answers anymore.”