Time to stock your counseling office (or classroom or closet) with some tried and true school counseling supplies. Most of these suggestions are typical supplies that we’ve repurposed to use in counseling activities. What games, books, crafts, or prizes do you use?
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links.
School Counseling Supplies: Toys and Games
Classical children’s games can be adapted easily for counseling. Blog posts like The Middle School Counselor’s post about using games in school counseling and Elementary School Counseling’s ideas about creating your own are great places to begin.
Give a strategy when you get an orange card in Candy Land. Use positive self-talk when you go down a chute in Chutes and Ladders or get skipped in Uno. Practice impulse control and focus with Operation or Pickup Sticks. Jenga is the ultimate chameleon counseling game. Great for an intro small group activity where students say something about themselves each time they pull out a block. How do you adapt regular games to counseling?
For Younger Students
It is important to consider that younger students need games with little or no reading and simple directions. For groups, also consider Zingo, Don’t Break the Ice or Honey Bee Tree. Younger groups love playing these games cooperatively and they are fast paced enough to keep them engaged.
Perfect for Small Groups
- Rebecca from School Counseling By Heart gave this Max a great review. We love Secret Door, another Family Pasttimes game. The cooperative focus of both is awesome for small groups.
- Cranium Brain Breaks. Perfect when you have a little bit of time to fill.
- Spot It! and Apples to Apples are ideal for 20-25 minute groups. They have minimal set-up and can stop at any time.
School Counseling Supplies: Fidgets and Calming Tools
It is helpful to have a spot in your office for students to use calming materials. This can prove useful when students are angry, sad, or filled with energy.
- Sensory Spiky Glove
- Pool noodles cut into 1-inch donuts
- Pencil Top Fidgets
- Fidget Toy
- Drawing paper and crayons
- Counting box with cotton balls
- Yoga Deck for Kids
- Timers. This allows you to structure the break and they can also be used as a calming tool.
- Mirror. It can help kids look and see how they are feeling.
- Take a Break Spot materials to lead them through the calm down process.
School Counseling Supplies: Books
Our offices are filled with tons of books and resources we can grab whenever we need something. At this point, we’ve probably bought Julia Cook and Trudy Ludwig a car. Rebecca from Counselor Up has a great game to accompany A Bad Case of Tattle Tongue.
Check out 15 Must Have Book for School Counselors from Kate from EduKate & Inspire, Vanessa from School Counseling Confessions, and Susan from Counseling Wisdom.
- How to Reach and Teach Children with Challenging Behavior
- Meeting Wise: Perfect for setting up routines and expectations for school team meetings.
- Brief Counseling That Works
- Solution Focused Counseling in Schools
- The New School Counselor: Strategies for Universal Academic Achievement
- Facilitating Evidence-Based, Data-Driven School Counseling
- ASCA National Model, 3rd Edition
- Free Character Education materials from Everything Just So.
- Free Resources from Character Lab. Try the WOOP activity for goal setting.
- Zones of Regulation: Perfect for co-treating with your OT. Helps students gain a better understanding of how to modulate their behavior.
School Counseling Supplies: Crafts
Stock up on glue sticks, googly eyes, glitter, and smelly markers. Scrapbooking kits are usually full of goodies. Drop by the dollar section in Target and grab some containers to organize everything. There are usually some awesome goodies there too.
Use common objects for counseling activities
Check out our 5 Ways Series for ideas
5 Ways to Use Play Doh
Grab a ream of white paper from the office.
Scrapbook Paper. Kids love all the different patterns
Crayons, Markers, Colored Pencils
School Counseling Supplies: Prize Box
You can put almost anything in the prize box. Kids love erasers, pencils, sharpeners, bouncy balls. These are special ones that are a hit.
Disclosure: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. This means if you click the link and purchase the item, we will receive a small commission. With that said, we only recommend items we have found useful as school counselors or staff and the commission helps us continue to run the site.