Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Resources for Executive Functioning


These books provide educators including counselors was to help children, especially those with Autism Spectrum Disorders, to improve executive functioning (EF) and flexibility. The Unstuck and On Target! program teaches three EF skills: 10 flexibility; 2) goal setting; and 3) making and checking plans.The program uses four teaching methods: 1) teach and use key scripts and words; 2) teach by doing; 3) use visual supports; and 4) make it fun! Solving Executive Function Challenges can help counselors understand the challenges of teaching EF and flexibility and how to put it in action. The Unstuck & On Target! is a curriculum guide with 28 lessons on 10 topics. If a counselor needs to lead a group for children who need to improve EF and flexibility the lessons are very scripted. I have co-lead groups using this curriculum in grades 2 and 3 with the school psychologist. We have used the lessons over 2 years because we don't run groups that last more than 12-14 sessions. The students like most of the group activities. The CD includes Home Extensions that can be sent home after each session. There is no special training required to use the materials, they are very straightforward.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Amy Krouse Rosenthal


Amy Krouse Rosenthal, author of 28 children's books, died last month at the age of 51. To learn more about Amy go to whoisamy. I just wanted to pay tribute to Amy by mentioning some of her books that I use regularly in counseling. Duck! Rabbit! is a terrific book to teach different perspectives. My favorite is The OK Book  which I use with groups of students who are anxious. Other books by Amy I use are Spoon, Chopsticks, and I Wish You More. She did a number of TED Talks that are very inspiring including 7 Notes on Life.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Katie Kangaroo & Her Awesome Career Adventure

We have begun teaching the 16 national career clusters in all our elementary schools. Katie Kangaroo is an interactive career adventure that can be displayed on the Smart Board to introduce students to a job in each of the 16 career clusters in a fun an engaging way. I plan to use it with my first graders when we return from spring break. A word of caution, initially only 10 clusters appear and you have to go to all 10 before the last 6 open. I found that out by contacting the publisher  https://www.youthlight.com Katie's adventure is structured by her asking each worker 4 basic questions. The program includes 14 follow-up activities to further enhance learning about careers.