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Setting Goals

Setting Goals for All Students Using Scaffolding

It is essential at the high school level to go beyon a one size fits all model for goal setting and differentiate and scaffold so all students have an opportunity to set goals that work for them.

The start of the new year is the ideal time to reflect and begin setting goals for the remainder of the school year. These can be goals for professional growth, counseling or advisory groups, individual counseling treatment plans, or suggestions you have received from your principal, teachers, or colleagues.


For years, I have worked in a variety of settings developing curricula, facilitating counseling and advisory, as well as, facilitating push-ins to classrooms for life-skills. I have frequently been asked if I can create a 30-minute lesson that teaches every student to set goals in an effort to pass their classes and graduate?


After I have a good laugh in my head and hold myself back from commenting that the lesson will include a magic wand, I explain that we can create the lesson, but in order to effectively facilitate a session on goal setting it will take more time than 30 minutes to ensure all the students grasp the necessary steps toward achieving their goals.


The objective is to have our students master the skills and understandings required for developing and achieving their goals. Over my career, I have developed a scaffolded method that allows teens and young adults to begin to understand and implement the skills that they need to be able to accomplish their goals. Read More »

Group Counseling, Setting Goals

Conversations: How do you use goal setting in counseling?

Set goals at any level in counseling with direct materials and step by step approach.

It is important that students make social-emotional progress and our lessons and counseling sessions are supposed to help them get there. Without clear goals, it can be difficult to tell if that is happening. Brandy and Rebecca use student-friendly materials and approach goal setting in a direct manner. The new year is a great time to reset the clock and incorporate goal setting at any age level. Read More »

Monthly CCC Tips, Setting Goals

School Counseling Professional Goals for 2018

Meet your school counseling professional goals by considering workshops, specialist training, national board certification, or clinical licensure.

Get Ready for 2018!  Maybe some of you wish 2017 could last a little bit longer and others are thankful that 2018 is almost here. Either way, the pressures of starting something new has hit, so let me ask you – what are your school counseling professional goals for 2018?


Professional Goals for a New Year

I do not want to pressure you nor do I want to add any stress to your life. So if your goal this year is to sit and drink margaritas on a beach, go for it. However, if you are not as fortunate and fall victim to the constant question when you head back to work: “What’s your New Year’s Resolution?”, the pressure to choose something is real. If you have no idea what your school counseling professional goal is going to be, let me help. Read More »

Professional Development, Setting Goals

Ready, Set, Second Semester: Make a Plan

It’s time to get ready for 2nd semester! Wait, you say, the 1st semester isn’t even over yet?! Exactly! In order to hit the ground running after winter break, it’s time to crunch some data and create a plan for your 2nd semester so that you are supporting the right students in the right way. Planning school counseling services does not have to be a daunting task. Prioritizing using your data will make it more straightforward.


Where to Start

If it’s one of those years and you didn’t make a plan or your plan is so far off track you need to start from scratch, I got ya. Here are some places to start to determine which students to prioritize: Read More »

Setting Goals

Why You Should Be Using SMART Goals in Counseling

SMART goals are incredible tools that can help you measure student progress and structure plans for counseling sessions. SMART Goals also fundamentally changed my approach to counseling, by giving students agency and engagement in their own improvement.


During my first five years as a school psychologist, my counseling sessions were full of social skills games, executive functioning checklists, and all the self-esteem projects you could imagine. Kids loved coming to counseling and I thought I was doing a pretty bang up job. Until Trey. Read More »

Individual Counseling, Setting Goals

Confident Counselors’ Resolutions

Confident Counselors' ResolutionsThere is something magical about the way a new year can feel like a clean slate. In schools, we are pretty lucky because we get this clean slate twice a year. As we head back to school this week, we are working on resolutions, not just our students, but for ourselves. What are your personal and professional resolutions for the new year?

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Monthly CCC Tips, Setting Goals

Tips for Setting Goals with Students

Tips for Setting Goals with Students

As counselors, we are constantly trying to help students make progress academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally. We know how necessary it is to use effective techniques to help students set goals, break them into manageable tasks, and track those goals. Here are a few tips and resources that may be helpful as we begin 2017.

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Monthly CCC Tips, Setting Goals