On Tuesday August 11, Assistant Professor in the Department of Education at Medaille College, Dr. Caitlin Riegel, presented at the Association of Teacher Educators (ATE) Conference. She presented alongside Dr. Rosina Mete, a registered psychotherapist located in Canada. Their presentaiton, titled “Mental Health in the 21st Century Classroom: Technology Strategies for Pre-Service Teachers,” focused on facilitating comprehension of mental health concerns in the 21st century classroom and provided technology strategies to promote mental health practices to support students’ emotional wellbeing.
Dr. Riegel and Dr. Mete’s presentation addressed the connection between mental health and academic performance. They discussed the academic, behavioral, cognitive, and physical “red flags” while sharing video segments that highlighted real student feedback regarding what students struggling with anxiety wish their teachers understood. Given the COVID-19 pandemic and the subsequent shift to distance leanring, Dr. Riegel and Dr. Mete shared mental health technology strategies that educators could utilize in their virtual classrooms, including highlighting some specific mental health technologies/applications that could be used in online learning environments. The presentation concluded by exploring phrases of support that attendees would have liked to hear while they were in school; this offered a moment of reflection for educators to consider the overwhelming nature of what students are currently going through in 21st century education