Counseling Craftivities

Confident Conversations

10 Minute Kindness Activities for the Classroom and Counseling

Kindness activities for the classroom or counseling

Creating a positive school culture is such an important step in engaging students in learning. Consistent and frequent kindness activities help build empathy, let students feel comfortable taking risks and create an accepting class community.

 

Research shows that when students view their teacher as caring and kind, they have better attendance, better grades, and are more engaged in the classroom. Find the spare moments in the day, whether it is morning work or after recess, to integrate simple kindness activities that pack that punch. Read More »

Kindness, School Culture

School Counselor’s Gratitude Journal

A school counselor's gratitude journal. Dear Diary, I'm thankful for interventions that work and pumpkin spice muffins.

Dear Diary,

In honor of Thanksgiving, I am going to be writing a gratitude journal. I am so thankful for today, especially the coffee that I spilled, the milk that was spoiled, the kid that spit on me in 3rd period. But I digress. I am honored and grateful to be a school counselor and these are a few of my favorite things (picture me spinning on a hilltop). Read More »

School Culture

Conversations: Confidentiality in School Counseling

What do you share with parents, teachers or your administration about a student’s progress or participation in school counseling services? Is your confidentiality policy considerate of student trust as well as student growth?

 

All or Nothing Confidentiality Policies Limit Progress

Social Emotional WorkshopConfidentiality is there to build trust and rapport while working towards goals. Students, elementary through high school, benefit from wrap-around services to make meaningful progress. They need multiple adults helping them practice skills and reinforcing their efforts. If we do not share information with relevant adults, I think we limit the progress they could make. Read More »

Individual Counseling, Monthly CCC Tips

Strategies for Managing Negative Attention Seeking

STOP, DROP, ROLL and CONNECT

I want to share a few helpful strategies I have found useful in managing negative attention seeking children. These are the children that push our buttons. They do what they can to sabotage yours or the group’s focus, and it’s frustrating. I am talking about the kids that whine, tattle tell, make obnoxious jokes, exaggerate, lie, question your materials, avoid assignments, and even the children that overly offer help at the most inappropriate times. Read More »

Behavior, Classroom Management

Conversations: Phone Calls from an Angry Parent

How Do You Handle a Phone Call from an Angry Parent?

It may be one of the worst parts of the job and seems to happen at 3:05 on a Friday afternoon. Those calls are tough to manage and tough to not take personally. Take a deep breath and check out our colleagues’ great tips for turning that call around into a productive problem-solving relationship. You will see that listening is a common theme. 😉 Read More »

Monthly CCC Tips, Parents

Teaching Study Skills as Part of Your Counseling Curriculum

Teaching study skills as part of your counseling curriculum

As school counselors, it’s easy to talk to students about things that are bugging them, help with problems they are having, and be their champion when they need one. It’s much more difficult to teach skills that provide documented data-driven results. When student progress is hindered by their lack of study skills, it is our job to help them learn the skills necessary to make improvements that will help them find academic success. But how can we teach these study skills and know that students made a meaningful improvement? It takes time, patience, practice opportunities, and good data recording.

Here’s what I have done in my own program to help teach study skills. Read More »

Study Skills

Conversations: Addressing Cutting and Self-Harm

Addressing Cutting Behaviors

Cutting and other non-suicidal self-harm behaviors are signs of situations in need of immediate attention. School counselors are often among the first to become aware of these behaviors and have an opportunity to respond quickly and effectively. Robyn from Mental Fills, Laura from Social Emotional Workshop, and Carol Miller, The Middle School Counselor share some tips from their experiences. Please check out the links at the bottom of this post for additional best practices. Read More »

Crisis, Suicide

Conversations: Tips and Tricks for Behavior Plans

What are your tips and tricks for behavior plans?

 

Data Driven Behavior Plans

The Sunny Sunshine Student Support StoreBehavior plans should be developed with a team who knows the students best (e.g., school staff, parents, and even the student!). The first step to an effective behavior plan is a thorough Functional Behavior Assessment (FBA). This determines the antecedents, target behavior definition and the consequences of the behavior. A great FBA will include information about the settings, frequency, times of day, intensity, duration, the hypothesis as to why the behavior occurs, and an assessment of the student’s preferences for reinforcement. Read More »

Behavior, Monthly CCC Tips

How to Plan a Successful Mix it Up at Lunch Day

Mix it Up at Lunch Day challenges students to get out of their comfort zone and engage with others, helping to create a more inclusive school. Begun by the organization, Teaching Tolerance, it is held on the last Tuesday of October. Students sit in a different seat in the cafeteria and interact with peers during their lunchtime. Preparation, activities, and follow-up are important to consider in hosting a Mix it Up at Lunch Day.

 

 

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School Culture