Teacher Education Department sponsoring program about poverty and children

The Teacher Education Department at Misericordia University is presenting the program, “Beyond Poverty: Brain-Inspired Ways to Understand and Respond to Poverty,’’ by Teresa McCloskey of the Upside Down Organization (UDO), Baltimore, Md., on Wednesday, Nov. 20 from 1:30-3 p.m. in the Catherine Evans McGowan Room of the Mary Kintz Bevevino Library. The program is available free to the public.


The Upside Down Organization is a teaching enterprise dedicated to improving the learning and behavior of children by expanding the knowledge and transforming the thinking of the adults and organizations that serve them. Established in 2007, UDO provides professional development seminars in 43 states, as well as Germany and Singapore.


McCloskey is a certified trainer for the UDO and is a program manager for the Healthy Family Partnership, which provides the nationally recognized Nurse-Family Partnership program in Wyoming and Sullivan counties.


At Misericordia University, she will address poverty and its synergistic and pervasive negative impact on children’s brains. Given the developmental windows occurring in childhood, poverty often wreaks havoc on the brain’s ability to grow and function optimally, according to McCloskey and UDO. In this workshop, participants will learn the specific impact of poverty on the developing brain, the outcomes of that damage in the classroom and community, and the interventions that can be used to overcome poverty’s effects.


“Huge advances in technology and neuroscience are allowing us to look deeper into the brain, providing us with a wealth of information on just how a brain develops,’’ said McCloskey. “By converting that neuroscience into interesting, user-friendly learning opportunities, the people who care for and educate our children may better understand who to assist them in reaching their full potential.’’


For more information about the Teacher Education Department at Misericordia University, please call (570) 674-6400 or log on to Founded and Sponsored by the Sisters of Mercy in 1924, Misericordia University is Luzerne County’s first four-year college and offers 34 academic programs on the graduate and undergraduate levels in full and part-time formats.