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Safe Within These Walls: De-escalating School Situations Before They Become Crises
Safe Within These Walls: De-escalating School Situations Before They Become Crises
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Reviewed Titles
Capstone Professional

Safe Within These Walls: De-escalating School Situations Before They Become Crises

In the wake of school tragedies and the growing concern about creating safe environments for children, teachers, parents, and school personnel, this resource provides practical techniques and guidelines for de-escalating aggression with insight and finesse rather than with force. Andrea Madea explains how to manage aggression from tantrums to mental health issues and school shootings, using anecdotes, research-informed techniques, and, at times, humor.

BrandCapstone Professional
Age Level- Years
Trim Size6 x 9
Page Count176



Education World - Jason Cunningham

"Description: After several school-based tragedies, national concern over school safety is at an all-time high. This book highlights what teachers and parents should know when dealing with mental health issues, typical tantrums and other issues in young people’s development. Safe Within These Walls offers professional development on violence prevention, while helping caregivers and teachers deal with students’ aggressive behaviors early and appropriately. Bottom Line: If you’re looking to deal with sensitive classroom situations, such as ones involving students with behavioral and developmental issues, and ones that risk becoming heated and/or violent, this book is the perfect resource. Safe Within These Walls provides common-sense and expert techniques to encourage positive student behavior and prevent outbursts and other disruptions. This title goes beyond de-escalating violence to address the core of good classroom management.About the Author: Medea teaches conflict management and has published several books on the topic. She invented the Virtual Tranquilizer method, which is the foundation of Safe Within These Walls." - Education World

February 10, 2014

Children's Home and Aid - Robert Atchison, MS

"In years prior I have counseled Juvenile Sex Offenders in a residential setting. I also was a Graphic Artist for 15 years prior to obtaining a Masters of Arts in Counseling from Northern Illinois University. I have attended several trainings presented by Andra Medea and found them very useful. I was flattered when Ms. Medea asked me for my impressions of her book "Safe Within These Walls" and offer a few thoughts below. I found "Safe Within These Walls" user friendly and a easy read. While the book is targeted to the educational community, the understanding of how people in distress are often unable to effectively process emotions and problem solve with-out assistance, also applies to the world of child protective services. Children as well as adults can find the System frustrating and challenging to their abilities to understand and function effectively. Much is published about, and I have attended other trainings to better understand the brain and the various chemical interactions that impact behaviors. One frustration I have experienced in my attempts to understand "brain" training is that it tends to be focused on the "what" i.e. chemicals and resulting behaviors but little practical information on what the "how", of actual interventions needed to address difficult behaviors. Andra provides a simple and practical explanation of how the phenomena of "flooding" influences an individual’s ability to effectively problem solve. Andra offers guidance and examples of strategies so needed by front line staff. Robert Atchison, MS Intact Family Services Program Manager Supervisor, Licensing and Permanency Children’s Home and AidRockford, IL" - Children's Home and Aid

February 10, 2014

Netgalley Review - Ashley Hutcheson

"I recommend that all teachers and parents read this book! . . .This book will help parents, administrators, and teachers to get inside the minds and motivations of students." - Netgalley Review

November 20, 2013


Education Week

"Medea's book, Safe Within These Walls: De-escalating School Situations Before They Become Crises (Capstone Classroom, 2014), offers classroom management advice for addressing students who are anxious, angry, or violent. The book, from a small publishing house for K-12 books, describes methods educators can use to subdue angry and violent students. One of the techniques Medea suggests for stopping fights is breaking students' eye contact by redirecting their gaze at you or away from the other student and using simple directions, like, "Back up." Medea tries to analyze past school shootings, the actions educators and students took, and methods for replicating safe behaviors. The book includes information about how the brain malfunctions when a person is angry and how to read this body language. There are also solutions for different age groups: K-2, 3-6, middle school, and parents. Useful summaries and specific steps for educators are provided at the end of each chapter. The best and safest time to de-escalate aggression is before it starts, Medea writes. Observe physical cues like avoiding eye contact or mocking tones. By reading situations and students, educators can intervene before situations get out of hand, she writes. Education WeekFebruary 2014" - Education Week

February 1, 2014

Laura L. Noah, Mediator/Conciliation Counselor - Office of the Chief Judge, Circuit Court of Cook County, Chicago

"When reading Andra’s book it’s impossible not to have that moment when it just clicks, like, why hadn’t I thought of doing that? As a society, we are ready for this. We can learn from the wisdom of those who have come before us and we can do things differently, hopefully preventing more violence from happening in our schools and in our neighborhoods. Andra’s book provides us with a reference point. The escalation of violence is complicated, but Andra’s strategies and her clear approach is simple and practical and we cannot afford to wait in implementing it." - Laura L. Noah, Mediator/Conciliation Counselor

November 1, 2013

Eric Ward, Psy.D., Executive Director at the Family Counseling Service

"No matter who you are, what your training is, or what your job is. No matter what “population” of people you work with—students, teachers, administrators, or counseling clients: Read this book. . . .Reading and applying the principles in this book will give you knowledge that took me 20 years of personal and professional experience to gain." - Eric Ward, Psy.D., Executive Director at the Family Counseling Service

October 1, 2013


Education Week's BookMarks blog - Marlena Chertock

"Unlike some of the other books on mass shootings, this one has specific steps educators can take to try to subdue violent people." - Education Week's BookMarks blog

February 21, 2014

Dr. Timothy E. Miller, Psychotherapist

"I feel Medea has raised the bar, once again, in dealing with sensitive, and potentially dangerous situations and people. I immediately thought while reading it that she not only shows people how to talk the talk, but also walk the walk. I find her use of language to be very easy to understand, which to me, means that implementation is easier. I give the book an A+!" - Dr. Timothy E. Miller, Psychotherapist

November 10, 2013

Andra Medea

Andra Medea

Andra Medea is the developer of the Virtual Tranquilizer, a de-escalation system that's been implemented for psychiatric staff, child protection workers, college staff, veterans, judges and lawyers. She has taught conflict management at Northwestern University and the University of Chicago, and is the author of Conflict Unraveled. Andra was raised in a volatile part of Chicago, where she experienced school violence first hand. She translated that knowledge to a successful system of violence prevention and self-defense which was taught to over 20,000 students. She holds a M.A. with a concentration in conflict management from DePaul University.

Go to the Author’s Page →