Monday, January 28, 2013

Great Resources

I highly recommend you visit this web site for some great resources
There are many emotional management resources on the site and some are free like posters to download.  I just purchased the value pack of Shubert books and a puppet.  The web site has a tab for Shubert's Classroom. If you have students who need help with self-regulation you are going to want some of the tools available on this site.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

No Name-Calling Week Almost Here

I have been looking for a good book to read to our first graders that shows how words can help or hurt.  I am going to use Diane de Groat's book because I think gets across the message clearly.  For the older students, I am going to point out that it is usually NOT a good idea to start a sentence with "No offense." For the second and third graders I am doing a version of the lesson on mean words wrinkle hearts.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Resources for Supporting Healthy Development in Girls

"Girls are becoming increasingly disillusioned about the media's portrayal of women. Over half of those aged 11 to 21 disagree with the statement that 'girls and young women are portrayed fairly in the media'." The Girls’ Attitudes Survey, Girlguiding UK, 2011 I found this data on a very good web site
This site is trying to stem the tide against  overtly gender-segregated, sexist products aimed at young children. 

I think it is important that we teach girls about a variety of women who made a difference in the world.  This ABC book of female heroines should be on all elementary library and counselor's shelves.  It includes a diverse group of women.  I think Amelia Earhart is an excellent lead because she is remembered as someone who was brave and courageous. She is a role model to many because she made a path for women in aviation and other fields that had not been open to women. Amelia Earhart displayed some very important values, many of which we see in exceptional role models today. Among these were loyalty, sincerity, moral character, honesty, and ethics. She was always about helping the underdog. She was also persistent and never gave up on a goal.


A modern day role model I want girls to know about is Justice  Sonia Sotomayor. Among other things, she's the first Hispanic on the Court, she's the daughter of Puerto Rican immigrants who settled in the Bronx -- that New York melting pot.  Her interview on 60 Minutes this week was so down to earth and honest.  I would have preferred that they had edited out her statement about beating up the boys who beat up her brother, but otherwise this Justice lets girls know if they have a dream and work hard they can overcome obstacles.  Her family was poor, she was raised for much of her life by her mom because her dad died of alcoholism when she was 9, and she was a juvenile diabetic.  We need to be sure our girls know women are in key positions in our country and they too can some day change the world!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

No Name-Calling Week


Today I am making plans for my school's efforts to stop name-calling, an ongoing concern.  This will be the fifth year our school has participated in No Name-Calling Week the last week in January.  If you need resources go to No Name-Calling Week . We are going to kick-off our participation with an announcement on our Friday TV broadcast the week before.  We will have morning announcements, activities, a bulletin board, a notice home to parents, etc.  I try to make it easy for teachers to participate by giving them simple ideas and ready made activities.  Our teachers do morning meetings (Responsive Classroom) so that is a perfect venue to discuss name-calling. We tie this in to our schoolwide bullying program so it is another reminder that we are striving for a positive school climate where everyone uses kind words and treats others with respect.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Readers Theater

In two of my second grade emotion management groups today we read through the script of this darling book. The script can be found at Just click on the link "Readers Theater" and you can download the script in a PDF.  There are other books appropriate for counseling groups.  For example, there is a script for "A Bad Case of the Stripes" which is a book I have mentioned before on this blog.  Many teachers in the primary grades use readers theater as a way to support reading development.  You can use these scripts to support academic and personal/social development at the same time.  I assign a part (or two) to each member, they highlight the copy of their script, practice reading it to themselves and ask if they need help with words, then we do the story together.  These scripts follow the book very closely so I turn the pages so those who are not reading can enjoy the pictures that match the text.  Because they are reading they really get the repetition of the "What if..." thinking in this book.  I like to do one script or poem or song with each group I read.  I try to vary the types of activities in each session.  Boys and girls both appreciate this story.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

New tech tool to explore

We had a fun inservice today on using Pixie 3 in our lessons.  We know creating with technology encourages thinking, creativity, and communication skills. Our district has a license for this, if yours does I highly recommend you check out how you could incorporate it into your lessons or small groups.