Transitions: Supporting Military Children

Transitions: Supporting Military Children is an interactive role-play simulation for educators and after-school staff that builds understanding and appreciation of the challenges faced by military-connected youth, and prepares users to lead real-life conversations with any youth who are struggling to adjust socially.

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PK-12 and Government/Non-Profit

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Caregiver and Educator

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Military Families/Veterans

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30 Minutes

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More than one million school-aged children in the U.S. have one or more parents in the military and will, on average, change schools between six and nine times. Military-connected children can face other significant challenges such as a parent's absence, injury, or death. Schools and youth services organizations need staff to be sensitive to potential challenges and create a welcoming and supportive environment for these youth.

First adopted for statewide use in Maryland and Arkansas, this online role-play simulation is designed to support the more than one million school-aged children of military families. Users assume the role of an after-school program director and talk with a virtual military-connected child who is struggling to adjust socially and is misbehaving. Users try different approaches to see what works best and have access to customized national, local, and school-specific resources in addition to simulation content.

The goal of Transitions: Supporting Military Children is to create a safe and supportive environment for military youth.

Learning objectives:

  • Understand the unique situations military youth and families face
  • Know how to support military children during times of transition
  • Apply motivational interviewing skills in a conversation with a military child to help him feel welcome, connected, and understood

This simulation draws on evidence-based motivational interviewing techniques to guide conversation with youth. Research shows that with experiential practice, increased emotional engagement and reflective thinking leads to stronger self-efficacy and behavior change. 

Users receive customized feedback based on their in-simulation choices.

The simulation is available online 24/7. Users are asked to complete pre-, post-, and 3-month follow up surveys to assess changes in skills. Attitudes, and behavior. Upon completion, users receive a certificate of completion.  Clients have access to usage reports and evaluation data via the Kognito client portal.

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