Monday, October 22, 2018

Bullying is MOO

It is critical in bullying prevention that the entire school use the same definition of bullying. My school used the BullyingUnit from Committee for children as the basis for the counselor delivered lessons.  I still found some of the students, staff, and parents were not clear on what is bullying and what is peer conflict.  Lat year I taught all K-grade 2 students that bullying is MOO: Mean, it happens Over and Over, and it is done On Purpose. For grades 3-5 I added another O: One-sided to match the definition in the curriculum. I had a cow puppet I took in with me as a hook: What does the cow say? This was my most successful attempt in teaching the definition of bullying. I recommend you find a way to teach a common definition school-wide.  

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Bullying Prevention

Every year in October PBS runs the video that goes with this book about Spookley the Square Pumpkin who was bullied because he was different. It is a great way to introduce this hard topic to kindergarten. Our survey data last Spring showed once again that our Students with Disabilities report higher rates of bullying in both 5th and 6th grades and 7th - 12th. I also like that this bulletin board is primarily orange so it is easy to tie in with Unity Day that is on October 24. Wear and share orange to show we are together against bullying and UNITED for kindness, acceptance an inclusion. This theme helps discuss why it is important to include everyone at school. For more resources on Unity Day go to

Saturday, October 6, 2018

Sequencing Groups

As you plan your school year it is important to figure out a schedule that maps the number of rounds of groups that will be offered. The diagram above reflects what my part-time counselor and I did last year.  We started groups at the end of September over 9 weeks (8 sessions with one week for make-ups) then started round 2, and a smaller number of groups the final round. Looking at the numbers of participants, perception data, and outcome data can drive your plan for this school year. We always have the highest demand for groups in kindergarten through grade 3. We rarely offer special groups like Children of Divorce, Adoption, or Allergies because our schedule requires us to do groups within a single grade. Completing a simple table like the one above makes it easier to complete the ASCA Small Group Action Plan.