Saturday, November 28, 2015
Friday, November 27, 2015
Tuesday, November 24, 2015
Sunday, November 15, 2015
When there is a tragedy in the world today children are exposed to it either through the media, from discussions they hear, or from friends sharing the "news." Many of our students already know something about what occurred on Friday in Paris. Many churches openly prayed for the victims. However they know counselors need to be prepared with a response come Monday morning. Here is a good article for parents how-to-talk-to-your-kids-about-the-attacks-in-paris/ The same advice goes for staff: generally don't bring it up but if a child mentions it ask what they know, respond that we are safe, it is okay to feel upset (share personal feelings of sadness and compassion), let them no France and countries around the world or working harder to being the terrorists who did this to justice.
Saturday, November 14, 2015
My second graders discussed Julia Cook's Wilma Jean Worry Machine that talks about many different common worries. In the book she encourages writing down worries and putting them in a "worry hat." I prefer to have the members write their worries on a worry tree. We talk about what is currently worrying them and when they start thinking "what if" thoughts about their anxieties they can imagine just hanging them on their worry tree. Most of the members quickly identified and wrote down 5 worries and marked them with a glitter leaf. They also each wrote one worry they used to have (marked with a bird) that no longer concerns them (it flew out of their mind). They can take these home and share their worries with a trusted adult.
Thursday, November 12, 2015
I am currently running 28 small groups. Our program relies heavily on small group counseling because it has been shown to help our students acquire specific skills that can be practiced. For each group topic I have a binder and for each group I have an accountability sheet to capture process data and notes and each child has an individual folder. I hold on to all work and send folders home when group ends. These are the groups I am leading just today. Every morning I make sure I have what I need (books, handouts, materials, etc.) and line them up in front of my book case. The pink folder at the end holds my classroom lesson I will teach at the end of the day. To manage a comprehensive counseling program requires a lot of time with the organization and management part. I am lucky because my Kindergarten team gives me 2 slots I can use as does my second grade team. That allows me the flexibility to run 6 groups in both of those grades. First grade only gives me one slot so I run 5 first grade groups (one each day of the week). Third grade I do a lunch group every day. In grades 4 and 5 I run 3 lunch groups each. I will start more groups after some of these conclude.