(In-Person) Teaching From the Heart: Nonviolent Communication in the Elementary Classroom

Solid heart drawn in white chalk on black chalkboard

New! If your employer is a compact member of the Harold Alfond Center for the Advancement of Maine’s Workforce, you may be eligible to take this program at a discounted cost. Click here to learn more.

Have you ever felt like you were more of a problem-solver than a teacher? Your best-made lesson plans are delayed by listening to your students argue about a problem that occurred at recess. You deal with this stress by addressing the class in a way that you regret. You know you’re a great teacher but you’re overwhelmed.

If this sounds familiar, Teaching from the Heart is the professional development course for you. Using a curriculum based on Nonviolent Communication principles, this program will provide you with tangible ways to manage your classroom and reach your full potential as an educator. Our doubts as caregivers and teachers are inevitable. If we have a system to refer to when these doubts creep in, we can relax. 

Learn how to manage your classroom/learning environment with a practical, simple curriculum based on Nonviolent Communication expert Gina Simm’s book Heart to Heart: Three Systems for Staying Connected (A Manual for Parents and Teachers). Through participating in this course, you’ll learn how to use practical systems to maintain the heart-to-heart connections that support children’s ability to self-regulate and improve their emotional intelligence. 

Participants are encouraged (though not required) to purchase instructor Gina Simm’s book, Heart to Heart: Three Systems for Staying Connected (A Manual for Parents and Teachers).*



🌷 Spring Edition 🌷
Fri., Apr. 28, 2023
9 a.m.–2 p.m. ET

(Snack and lunch are included in registration)




At present, this program is scheduled to be offered in-person at the Hutchinson Center in Belfast, Maine (80 Belmont Ave.). This is subject to change⁠—we will be in touch with participants if the modality shifts.

Student with dark brown skin coloring in a feeling card

PROGRAM BENEFITS                                                      

  • Learn how to manage conflict in your classroom
  • Build an understanding of Nonviolent Communication methods
  • Understand the power of children’s books to support social-emotional learning (SEL)
  • Recognize the difference between empathy and problem solving
  • Transform your learning environment!



This course provides a full social-emotional curriculum based on Nonviolent Communication principles. Systems and tools like the Wheel of Choice and Problem-Solving Meetings will help you transform your learning environment. You’ll even learn how to use children’s literature to implement Nonviolent Communication in your classroom.


This course is designed to benefit teachers, educators and anyone who cares about children (preschoolers through third grade), especially:

  • Afterschool program staff
  • Caregivers
  • Childcare providers
  • Educators
  • Grandparents
  • Homeschool teachers and organizations
  • Montessori teachers
  • Parents and guardians
  • School counselors
  • Summer camp counselors
  • Teachers (including those in training)

Not sure if this program is right for you? Contact us at um.fhc.pd@maine.edu or 207.338.8002 and we can help you figure it out.



Gina Simm, headshot

Gina Simm (she/her/hers) has taught in early childhood education for over 30 years. Her background in Montessori education and children’s theater launched her into the world of public schools where she spent most of her career as a first-grade teacher (including a year spent teaching English in China). Simm worked closely with Miki Kashtan, a co-founder of Bay Area Nonviolent Communication. Simm’s knowledge of Nonviolent Communication has transformed her classroom into a place where systems of the heart create a child-centered environment for moving through conflict. Simm lives in the Pioneer Valley Cohousing Community in Amherst, Massachusetts. To learn more, visit www.teachingfromyourheart.org.




Click here for more information about paying for your professional development, including information about need-based scholarships, group discounts and tips on how to get your employer on board.



30 participants



5 hours / 0.5 CEUs

Certificate of Completion Available Upon Request.

Learn more about Continuing Education Units here.



For more information or to request an accommodation contact um.fhc.pd@maine.edu; 207.338.8002.

*The book can be purchased through Gina directly or on Amazon/Barnes & Noble.

Interview with Lorrie Heard, Teaching From the Heart Participant

"I loved Gina's book and the simplicity of the Teaching From the Heart program. I can take this into my classroom today and feel confident doing it." Teaching From the Heart Participant
"What a joy to realize that with a few systems in place, there is so much possibility in conflict and moments of distress to turn them into pure gold! How I wish I had her as a teacher when I was a child." Mia L Merlin, reviewing Gina Simm's book