Friday, September 5, 2014

My First Blog!! Welcome Back to School!

I am excited to start my first blog! It is still a work in progress and I will be adding some more info to it soon, but I am glad to get it started!  I welcome everyone back to school and hope you all have adjusted well to the school routines! This week I was able to get to everyone's class to give an "Introduction to the Counselor" lesson. In grades PK- 2, the students helped me add body parts to my "Ms. Potato Head" and helped me identify how each of the parts we added were helpful to me with the work I do as a school counselor. For example, someone came up and chose some eyes for me to add and we talked about how my eyes help me to look at all of the children's faces and read the feelings on their face. I had them show me different emotions on their faces and talked about how it is my job to notice those emotions and if you look upset to ask, "What's wrong? How can I help you to feel better?" We continued with all the body parts and came to the conclusion that I don't need a nose for my job (besides breathing) because I don't need to smell children! ;-) They got a kick out of that! Here is the finished product from Ms. Roll's class: 

In grades 3-5, we tossed the "Get to Know You Ball" around, which has many questions on it to get to know the students; such as, "Do you have any brothers or sisters?" or "What is your favorite activity to do?" The kids answered whatever question their thumb landed on as they tossed the ball and caught it. It was great to get to learn more about each of them! After that, I wanted them to get to know more about my job as a school counselor, so I got out my School Counselor First Aid Kit and we talked about how all the objects in the kit could help me to do my job. For example, the band-aid I had in the kit can be used to help "heal wounds that are on the inside", or "patch up the hurt and bad feelings". The toothpick in the kit can be used to "pick out your problems," so we can work together to solve them. 

In all grades, after we did our activities, we all talked about how they can come and see me in my office if they need to. They are able to fill out a self-referral, which I gave to the teachers, if they would like to see me with a "big problem". We talked about big problems and little problems. Little problems are issues they can handle on their own, with the help of a friend, or with the teacher in the classroom. For example, someone pushed them, or called them a name. This can be solved by talking it out, one of our conflict-resolution strategies, or getting help from the teacher. They wouldn't need to come to me for this, but I do come and give guidance lessons every three weeks, which is where I teach them how to solve the smaller problems on their own. Big problems are ones that they can't handle on their own, with a friend, a parent, or with the help of a teacher. For example, their parents may be getting a divorce and they are struggling with this; or maybe a pet or family member has passed away. Those are bigger issues and I showed them how to request to see me if they need help dealing with any big problems they may have. 

What a fun week!! Look for me to post at least once a week to update you on what we learned for the week, or other important information! 

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