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Confident Counselors

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

15 Must Have Books for Elementary School Counselors

15 Must-Have Books for Elementary School Counselors. Books on feelings, personal safety, incarceration, growth mindset, friendship, self-esteem.

Hello Confident Elementary Counselors!  Kate, Susan, and Vanessa here to share with you some of our favorite books for elementary school counselors. The three of us have teamed up to tell you about the books we love and also tell you a bit about ourselves. As elementary counselors, we know that books are an important tool to use in our programming. Children can easily connect to the characters in stories, which helps them begin to apply the message to their own life. Join us as we tell you more about ourselves and our favorite books for elementary school counselors! Read More »

Bibliotherapy, Product Review

10 Ways to Prepare During the Summer

School Counselor Summer Prep. 10 ways to prepare this summer to ensure their year is off to a great, confident start. #schoolcounselorprep

Summer is finally here and we all have time to breathe and decompress from another whirlwind year of advocating and empowering! If you’re like us, after a week or so of sipping lemonade by the pool, you might be getting the itch to start planning for another successful year. CounselorChelsey and Counselor Keri are here to share 10 things school counselors can do during the summer to prepare for the school year!

Review your data from the year

What programs and initiatives were successful? Where is there room for improvement? Begin looking for new data-driven interventions to address those areas that were not as successful (and celebrate the areas that were!). Use your data to determine which topics you will cover in classroom guidance lessons and small group programs. Read More »

Back to School

Suicide Prevention Best Practices

Suicide Prevention Best Practices

 

We all want to say that we are great at what we do. I believe we all do our best job. But, no matter what our experience level is, situations arise and we question ourselves: Did I follow best practice? Did I do everything I could? Am I missing something? Do I know what I’m doing? Suicide prevention is often one of those areas that leave us with these thoughts. It is a sensitive and delicate situation. We need to be knowledgeable and have an action plan in place. Rather than give you tips this month, we thought it would be best to provide you with resources to help navigate through these challenging situations. Below, the team of Confident Counselors shares their best resource suggestions for suicide prevention.  Read More »

Monthly CCC Tips, Suicide

Supporting Students with Test Anxiety

Supporting Students with Test Anxiety

It’s March already?! When did that happen? During this time of year, we inevitably see a rise in test anxiety for students and staff alike. While we cannot prevent the tests from happening, we can better prepare our students and staff to cope with these challenges. This month’s tips provide suggestions for helping students become more aware of their anxiety, ways to approach test anxiety as a school, and coping skills to manage test anxiety. You will also find that these tips come in handy for school staff at your next professional development day or faculty meeting.

Read More »

Monthly CCC Tips, Test Anxiety