BRAVING the Classroom: 7 Days of Teaching Tips on Trust (Based on the Work of Brené Brown) - By Lori Carson

In her work on vulnerability, Brené Brown uses the acronym BRAVING to help us remember the behaviours required to nurture trusting relationships. Brown reminds us that “trust is earned in small moments…over time…and cannot be summoned in a command.” In an emotionally safe school environment, there are many small interactions between teacher and student that occur throughout the school day and can foster a foundation of trust in the classroom.

BRAVING stands for: Boundaries, Reliability, Accountability, Vault, Integrity, Non-Judgement, & Generosity

Over the next week, I will share a series of teaching tips based on the BRAVING framework. I urge you to share your own ideas in the comment section or through your own submissions to our Blog or Teaching Tips Section of the Centre for Relationship-Based Education website.

Day 1 – Tips to create BOUNDARIES

  1. When creating boundaries and setting limits remember that children are doing their best and that they seek connection, acceptance, a sense of belonging and competence.

  2. Remember that children and youth need boundaries and limits to feel safe at school and thrive when provided a consistent, structured and predictable daily routine.

  3. While students need boundaries, it is natural for them to test boundaries.

  4.  Students (especially young children) need to be explicitly taught about appropriate physical and emotional boundaries and classroom behaviour.

  5. Personal space should be taught and modelled by staff and respected by students and staff. Be clear about expectations.

  6. Boundaries can be taught through games and promoted through the use of visual reminders, prompts and cues. Many students benefit from a personal visual schedule.

  7. Boundaries and classroom norms can be co-created with students of any age.

  8. Limits should be set and maintained in a positive and caring way in order to maintain positive and safe relationships.

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