PLD Course 2: Trauma-Proofing Children & Teens

Dates: To Be Advised

Note this 2-day PLD course can be run at your school. The maximum number of participants is 10

Suitable for Principals; Guidance Counsellors; Pre-school, Primary, & Secondary Teachers; RTLBs; School Health Personnel; and Parents


Learning Outcomes

This course will teach you how to:

  • Spot behavioural signs of trauma

  • De-traumatise earlier traumas

  • Help children and teens to be more resilient, and “bounce back” from potentially traumatic events


Comment from a Course Participant, November 2014

Trauma-Proofing with Gerry has been so educational … it has enhanced my nursing practice, and how I interact with my own family immeasurably. It focuses on the root cause of trauma … I highly recommend it to parents, health, and educational professionals. Thank you so much Gerry for your knowledge, wisdom, empathy and kindness”.  Abby Soares, B.H.Sc. Registered Nurse (Paediatrics), Nutritionist.



When a large traumatic event impacts a school, the Ministry of Education assembles a special team that is made available to the school for help. This is a wonderful policy, and we are blest to live in a country where there is such a service. Most children and teens however, experience trauma other than as a result of a major single event. This course is designed to help schools and families learn how to deal with the many other sources of trauma that can impact on the lives of children and teens, and thereby interfere with educational achievement.


Course Description: There’s good news and bad news with respect to children and trauma. 

The bad news is children can be traumatised as a result of every-day “ordinary” events, such as falls, bullying, medical procedures, separation from their primary care-giver, or divorce. These are examples of events that can cause children to withdraw, lose confidence, or develop anxiety and phobias. Traumatised children may also display behavioural problems including aggression, hyperactivity and –as they grow older- addictions of various sorts.

The good news is that with the guidance of attuned school personnel or parents who are willing to learn the necessary skills, children at risk can be identified and spared from the long-term consequences of trauma.

The course is based on the work of trauma expert Dr Peter Levine. It is designed to teach the skills concerned, and then practice them within the context of the course.

The method taught does not require detailed historic recollection, or verbalising about a traumatic event. In fact Dr Levine is quite clear that verbal recall of trauma (which necessarily engages the cortex), often gets in the way. According Dr Levine effective detraumatising needs to concentrate on creating the opportunity for the non-verbal mammalian and reptilian parts of the brain to naturally return to a pre-traumartised state of equilibrium. When this has been facilitated, then disregulated functioning in these lower regions of the brain will (among other responses) stop interfering with a range of desired cortex functions such as; attention, focus, focus flexibility, undue emotional fluctuation, and effective memory input & retrieval -all vital brain functions within an educational setting.

Here is a link to the book we will use as our guiding text. It’s recommended that you buy it. You’ll see it’s one of several books written by Dr Levine. 


Before enrolling for this course please ensure you read the Terms of Engagement, and the following note:

The course focus is on many “everyday” ways that children can experience trauma. It will only mention in passing potential sources of major trauma such as extreme physical assault or psychological abuse of any sort, extreme poverty, or war. However if you have a severe trauma history, and have not completed effective detraumatising therapy, you may find this course upsetting. Registration for the course will be taken as you acknowledging that you understand this, and you will take full responsibility for seeking appropriate help, if you find the course content creates recurring distress. If you’re unsure please consult a suitably qualified health professional before enrolling.

Once you have completed enrolment you will be referred to specific reading and video material by trauma expert Dr Peter Levine.


Course Venue:

North Shore Auckland :

Highbury House, 110 Hinemoa Street, Birkenhead

Minimum Enrolments 5,  Maximum 15

Other areas of Auckland, and outside of Auckland

See the notes under “Cost” immediately below. For more information please contact Brain Time to discuss possible dates and venues.



At Highbury House in Birkenhead, Auckland: $250.00 Minimum enrolments 5, maximum 15

Within greater Auckland: Total Cost $3000 for up to a maximum of 12 participants, provided the course  can be run at your school free of charge, for the use thereof.

Other parts of NZ: Total Cost $3000 for up to a maximum of 12 participants, provided the course can be run at your school free of charge, for the use thereof; plus travel fares. Gerry is accepting of being billeted to avoid accommodation costs being added to the fee.



Brain Time Ltd, Account Number 38-9014-0079953-01 Please write your name, and school (if applicable), in one of the transaction reference boxes.



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In the message section please state that you would like to register for the Trauma-Proofing Children & Teens PLD course.

Your registration will be confirmed by email once payment has been received.

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Course Facilitator:

Gerry Douglas  M.Phil.(Hons). Education;  B.Soc.Sc. Psychology;  Dip.Tchg;  Registered Teacher