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Confident Counselors

Conversations: Favorite Book to Use in Counseling

We all have a favorite book to use in counseling with students. Children’s literature can be a great, engaging way to open up conversations, address issues, and help students connect with a character who is experiencing the same issues as them. Three Confident Counselors have some great suggestions and companion resources to help you use these favorite books.  Read More »

Bibliotherapy

Conversations: Bullying Awareness Month is Next Week

Bullying Awareness Month is coming up in October. It is an important month to highlight anti-bullying programs and initiatives in your school. If your school doesn’t directly or effectively address bullying, it is a great time to open up conversations with your administration.

Bullying Awareness Month

The Sunny Sunshine Student Support StoreI find that my students believe that any misunderstanding, problem, or conflict is bullying. I like to educate my students on what exactly bullying is and how it differs from conflicts, accidents, and misunderstandings. Then, I work on giving my students the tools to help manage these situations.

– The Sunny Sunshine Student Support

Bilingual LearnerAt my school, we prepare for Bullying Awareness Month with lots of support and info-sharing through guidance lessons. I am at a middle school, so kids picking on each other often goes with the territory. I use a specific guidance lesson to introduce the bullying topic with definitions, and “what to do if” scenarios.

 

Here is a link to the bullying guidance lesson if you’d like to check it out. Then, in the next guidance lesson on this topic, I take our school resource officer (police officer) in with me and he explains the legalities of bullying to students. I am in Texas, which just passed very strict anti-bullying interventions through David’s Law, so we spend a lot of time and effort on this topic during Bullying Awareness Month and year round.

Stephanie from Bilingual Learner

Social Emotional WorkshopOne important perspective change I had about bullying came after hearing Ross Greene speak. He emphasized that in the bully-victim relationship, there were skills lacking on both sides. Since then, I coach others to think about bullies with skill deficits that need intervention, rather than as a bad kid. This month, consider intensive interventions that focus on social problem solving, empathy building, and impulse control.

 

Check out Ross Greene’s article B is for Bullies (and the Bullied) and advocate for policies that go beyond zero tolerance and create a school climate where bullying is solved and not managed.

-Laura from Social Emotional Workshop

Check out our other posts on Bullying and share what you do in the comments!

Bullying awareness month and suggestions

Bullying

Conversations: What Can’t You Live Without in Your Office?

Do you have something in your office you can’t live without? I don’t mean the drawer of candy. I mean those items that would make you feel less than confident if they disappeared. Check out these school counselor office must haves! I have some new ones on my list.

 

School Counseling FilesUsing an idea from Gretchen at Speckled Moose Counseling, I’ve made a feelings check-in chart. I hung a clear shoe organizer on the wall and clipped a feelings flash card to each of the 24 pockets. Every kid I see decorates a giant popsicle stick. Every time they come in they find their stick and place it in the pocket that matches how they’re feeling.

 

Feelings Bulletin Board from Speckled Moose Counseling

 

They all automatically go to check in when they arrive at my office, and many of them move their popsicle sticks again before they leave (usually to “happy” if they weren’t already there). Kids who come in randomly often ask if they can decorate a popsicle stick too. It’s a quick and easy way to get kids to think about how they’re feeling and choose the appropriate word.  

Laurie Mendoza, School Counseling Files

EduKate & InspireAs a former 2nd grade teacher, I fell in love with using children’s books to teach important lessons. Children quickly relate to the characters in stories. This provides them with a unique way to understand the story’s message and apply it to their own lives.

Now, as a school counselor, one resource I cannot live without is my collection of children’s books! Books in classroom lessons are an engaging way to introduce a new topic. I also use books in my small groups and have found that students love the small group atmosphere to discuss the story.

I even use books one-on-one with students in individual sessions! We sit on the couch in my office as we read and discuss how the message in the story applies to the student’s life.  For some of my students, this may be the only one-on-one reading time they get. To help me stay organized, I categorize all of the books in my office by topic. You can read more about how I use and organize my children’s books in this post on my blog.  

Kate from EduKate and Inspire

Mental Fills on TPTWhen not attending meetings or providing groups and individual sessions, I live at my desk. Throughout the year, I am able to spend hours at a time completing paperwork, sending emails, playing on social media, and creating resources for TPT. Because I had become a pro at engaging in sedentary work habits, it was becoming easier for me to pack on pounds and feel down. In an effort to prevent this and keep up with my work, last year I found two game changing office essentials that I now refuse to go without- a desk bike and a Light Box.

I start my work day at 6:00 in the morning and my office lacks any natural light. I can substitute losing these important rays, by turning on my light box for 45 minutes every morning. While I catch up on emails, I place my feet in the bike pedals and burn away the calories. I have noted a significant improvement in my mood. Gone are the days that I feel guilty for not getting off my butt! I absolutely still benefit from getting up and going on walks, but these office essentials help me to feel good about myself when I need to finish important work.

Robyn at Mental Fills

Counselor KeriIt’s helpful to have of bin of sensory items for students to choose from, whether they’re coming to talk or need time to calm and refocus before returning to class. Seeing reluctant sharers open up as they engaged their senses convinced me that these items were counseling office must-haves! Some of my favorites are palm-sized massage balls, squishy gel pads, and Koosh balls. All of these items can be purchased from therapeutic toy retailers, made at home, or found in dollar stores. It’s always a good idea to have a couple of bins so you can swap them out for variety and when it’s time to clean the contents!

Keri from Counselor Keri

School Counselor Office Must Haves

 

What can’t you live without in your office?

Ultimate School Counselor Supply List

Uncategorized

Conversations: What Do You Do for Self-Care?

One of the perks and necessities of our job is having a break during the summer to reset and get ready for another year. We have the space to reflect, enjoy some daylight, and drink coffee for pleasure rather than survival.

Check out some great ideas for self-care from Gretchen from Speckled Moose Counseling, Laurie from School Counseling Files, and Jodi from The School Counselor Is In. Read More »

Career Stress

Managing Disruptive Behavior Referrals

Managing Behavioral Referrals for Disruptive Behaivior

 

Managing behavior referrals often fall under the realm of school counseling.  However, most school counseling programs have few, if any, behavior management components. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!  Confident Counselor authors are ready to share their best practices for managing behavior referrals. Heather will cover the details we need to know first when presented with a behavior.  Carla has some tips for clarifying the problem with the teacher.  Finally, Robyn has some solid advice on how to engage the parents.  Read More »

Behavior, Classroom Management, Parents, Teacher Consultation