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TED Talk Assignment (How Childhood Trauma Affects Health Across a Lifetime)

Grade Levels
11th - 12th, Higher Education, Adult Education, Homeschool
Formats Included
  • PDF
7 pages
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*Recently Updated! This TED Talk lesson is intended to be used with Nadine Burke Harris' TED Talk "How Childhood Trauma Affects Health Across a Lifetime." This multi-part lesson includes questions pertaining to Dr. Harris' TED Talk, an online activity and questions relating to the ACES (Adverse Childhood Experiences Study) and a "taking it further" activity regarding treatment for children and adults with high ACES scores.

From TED:Childhood trauma isn’t something you just get over as you grow up. Pediatrician Nadine Burke Harris explains that the repeated stress of abuse, neglect and parents struggling with mental health or substance abuse issues has real, tangible effects on the development of the brain. This unfolds across a lifetime, to the point where those who’ve experienced high levels of trauma are at triple the risk for heart disease and lung cancer. An impassioned plea for pediatric medicine to confront the prevention and treatment of trauma, head-on.

This assignment is appropriate for a high school Psychology or Health course. I also use this lesson with my Life Skills students. This TED Talk and lesson is in my opinion, the most profoundly important TED lesson I use with my students.

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Total Pages
7 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
1 hour
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Evaluate a speaker’s point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric, assessing the stance, premises, links among ideas, word choice, points of emphasis, and tone used.


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