The best chewelry
My newly found favorite store for chewelry and figet toys is https://www.stimtastic.co/ My students love the chewy necklaces. I love the variety and breakaway necklace. This year, I have 510 gen. ed. students, fourteen students that are diagnosed with autism and six students with mild to moderate disabilities. This store has products for all. [ I have no connection with Stimtastic and recieve nothing for sharing this.]
August 29th, 2018
A little winter fun for staff
We are having a staff breakfast next week and I saw the idea for predicting a snow day in a set on TPT for Staff Icebreakers . Clipart from Educlips. Thought this would be a nice way to support my hard working teachers. Can't wait to see there response.
Where is the counselor? door sign
My school colors are blue and yellow. Our mascot is an arrow. I created simple signs in MS Word. I am attaching velcro dots to the poster and have an arrow that will point to where I am. Door signs are a must for counselors. It takes me a second to change my sign as I walk out the door and saves students, teachers, administrators and parents from being frustrated with not knowing where I am.
I am super excited to be working in an elementary this year. My school's mascot is Arrows so I love the Aim High themed supplies from Carson-Dellosa. I also recreated the Inside Out bulletin that numerous others have shared. My office is slowly coming together and school starts next week.
Gossip - 4th & 5th grade
Ask students why might people spread gossip? (to get attention, revenge, to draw attention away from something they did, etc.)
Two Truths and a Lie (celebrity) [the lies do not have periods at the end of the sentences, all info was gotten off IMDb]
Talk about how even flattering rumors can still hurt someone. (if you got a new video game and I told everyone, it would take away from your joy of telling people)
Talk about how spreading embarrassing truths can also hurt someone.
Talk about ways to stop/decrease spreading of rumors (ask students what they think they can do to stop the spread of rumors?)
Have students fold a paper in half for every time they agree with a statement.
Define Conflict: A struggle or clash between opposing forces;
Incompatibility or interference, as of one idea, desire, event, or activity with another;
Mental struggle resulting from incompatible or opposing needs, drives, wishes, or external or internal demands;
Ask students for examples of conflict
Ask is conflict always a bad thing
Discuss how conflict is neutral and the way we hand conflict can be both a positive and negative
Discuss how we all have a style of how we prefer to handle conflict
Help students Identify their conflict style
Have students complete the Fairy Tale Conflict worksheet, Ask students to think about how they solve the conflict in the fairy tale and how that aligns with their conflict style
I used this group with a group of second grade boys. They really enjoyed having stories read to them and spending time talking about what was happening in their world. I think it is always valuable to learn what students' perceptions of a situation is. For the most part, the students didn't understand why they were getting in trouble with their teachers. Some students need social skills taught in an explicit way. Social stories are a great way to introduce skills to students.
What is the Social Skills for School group?
Feelings - Kindergarten
This lesson is similar to the 1st - 2nd grade lesson but with it simplified to the four main feelings.
Read the story The Way I Feel.
Discuss how we have lots of feelings and how they are constantly changing. Remind students that it is okay to have any feeling, how we show those feelings needs to be done in a safe manner.
Show pumpkin emotion cards and have students guess what emotion they are.
Have students draw their own pumpkin faces for happy, sad, silly, and mad.
Digital Citizenship - 4th grade
For my digital citizenship lesson, I used a lesson I found at Eagle Digital Citizenship. I did change what video I used. I liked this video from Common Sense Education better for my students. Here are some examples from my students. This lesson taught about so much more than digital citizenship as students explored interests and hobbies, identified college and career goals, and personal aspirations.
Digital Citizenship - 5th grade
For the 5th graders, I used The Power of Words lesson plan by Common Sense Media
Here are the links to all the resources. I adapted the lesson slightly to fit what I thought would benefit my students.
Power of Words Lesson
In the lesson, I only used Words Can Hurt and the Talk & Take Action worksheets.
Family Tip Sheet
The students had a blast making their own comics and sharing them on the overhead with the whole class.
Empathy - 3rd grade
Read the story Stand in My Shoes.
Ask Students to define empathy. (Empathy - the ability to understand and care about how another person is feeling.)
Watch the Sesame street video if students need further clarification.
Talk about the Five Steps of Empathy:
4 Heart: I let the students decide if they wanted to talk through the scenarios or act them out. I loved watching the students come up with clever ways to show empathy when they acted out the scenes. The classes that choose to act out vs talking had better responses to the scenarios.
Explain that today we’re going to learn about feelings. We’re going to learn how to sort feelings into 4 different categories based on how your brain and body feel.
Blue - body is running slow, not much energy, tired, sick, sad, or bored
Green - body feels good to go, like a green light, happy, calm, focused
Yellow - caution and slow down, body is starting to lose control, feel silly, wiggly, excited, worried, anxious, surprised
Red - out of control and need to stop, extreme feelings like anger, extreme nervous
Read the story The Way I Feel.
Show Pumpkin emotion cards and have students guess what emotion they are and what zone they are in. Ask students what parts of the face helped you decide what emotion it is? Point out eyebrows, eyes, mouth, cheeks and how we use those to help us understand how others are feeling.
Have students draw their own pumpkin faces for each zones.
4 Heart: I was careful with this lesson to not reference the well-known holiday. I talked about fall for the use of pumpkin shapes because it is funner then drawing on circles. The students quickly picked up on the idea of sorting feelings into the four Zones of Regulation. My talented daughter drew the faces on the pumpkins.
Read the story You Be You.
As you are reading point out how the fish are all swimming but in different directions. Ask students what differences they saw. Talk about how we are like the fish in the book and we are all different but maybe we look or do something like someone else. But we are still unique.
Have students create their own rock fish and attach to the ocean (blue bulletin paper).
4Heart: The students loved being creative with designing their fish and how they swam in the ocean. Their ocean hung in the hall most of the year.
School Climate is at the heart of everything we do as school counselors. When discussing school climate with a colleague, she suggested Stan Davis’s book Schools Where Everyone Belongs. Besides the fundamentals of discipline (clear rules enforced consistently) and addressing bullying, Davis does a fantastic job in reminding us that the attitudes of staff have a profound impact on the students.
He stated that the subtle way teachers interact with students affects the way other students view and treat them. “When we show by our actions that we value every student, we encourage our students to do the same” (Davis, p.44). The book is full of useful strategies for bullying, discipline, and communication with students and families.
My biggest take away changed the way I talk to my students and my own children. Davis suggested calm, descriptive feedback statements that do not include judgement or our feelings are most likely to help youth focus on their own actions and the results of those actions. The book has specific examples for feedback and praise. Great quick read.
This is a simple group about emotions and coping skills. I used it with the primary grades. It was a great way to help students who need a little extra support with emotional regulation. I focused each week on one emotion and a coping skill to go with it. I define the term Coping Skill as any tip, trick, or tool that you use to safely help you calm down that doesn't hurt you, others, or property.
What is Feelings with Friends
Introduce yourself to the class. Use the School Counselor Toolbox to facilitate a conversation about what a counselor does. Let students take turns coming up and picking an item and share why they think I might have it in my toolbox. (remind students that not everyone will get a turn)
* I have also supplemented this lesson by starting with the story Mrs Joyce Gives the Best High Fives: Introducing the School Counselor by Erainna Winnett
This lesson helps students to understand the role of a school counselor and learn the numerous ways I am here to support them. The drawings pull my heart strings as I see what parts of my job they like best.
meet the counselor (grades 3-5)
Healing the Heart from Savvy School Counselor
Ask students if they know and remember what a school counselor does. If they understand the role of the school counselor, move on to the activity. If not, discuss K-2 lesson.
This activity will prompt students to think about common problems they may face and determine the size of the problem. By determining the size of a problem, students will also learn how quickly they should seek help from the school counselor (or a trusted adult for those critical situations).
Healing the Heart revised activity - Print out the Large, Medium, Small, and Critical Problem Hearts on full size sheets of paper. Print out band-aids and attach descriptions on the bottom side, laminate materials for longevity.
At the beginning of the lesson, read each of descriptions for the four different sizes of problems. Hang up hearts on a visible surface. Pass out band-aids to the students (working in groups of two or more) have them complete the worksheet. (I had groups of two students and they each got two bandaids). Once WS is completed, students will put their band-aid under the correct heart on the board. Discuss example and why it is under that category. Discuss with students about when to see me and how to see me.
This lesson helps students to understand the size of a problem (some serious critical thinking happening) and then use that knowledge to know how soon they should see the school counselor (making informed decisions). I also use this time to remind students about what my school's procedures are for coming to see me.
4 Heart Design
I designed this image late one night when my depression was keeping me awake. I first drew a heart and added a teardrop falling from the inner point of the heart. To me, this symbolized the hidden tears of depression that I keep on the inside of my heart. Then I decided to compile four hearts as it is my four daughters that keep me going. Next I added the semicolon to represent my depression and raise awareness for mental health (Project Semicolon). This is my original design.
Hi, I'm Christi; a School Counselor in Ohio. Please see the About page for more details.