Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Giving Tree, Responsibility, and Conflict/Resolution

I decided to combine last week's events with this week, since we only have two days of school this week. Last week I finished up with my Conflict/Resolution lessons in 4th and 5th grade classes. We began the lesson by watching this fun, little video clip from the late Robin Williams and a couple of Sesame Street characters:

The kids got a kick out of this clip and how it described what the word "conflict" means. We then went over Kelso's Choices (see previous two blogs for more information on this), watched the Kelso's "It's Your Choice Baby" song, and did some role playing with different scenarios that would cause conflict. Each student was paired up and they were able to role play different types of conflict and each take a turn choosing an appropriate choice to solve that problem.

Next week I will be in Pre-K, Kindergarten, and 1st Grade to give our required lesson on personal safety, stranger danger, and good touch/bad touch.

Today was the last day for our SEL Word of the Month, "responsibility". Some of our 5th graders explained the definition of "responsibility" to the whole school at our assembly this morning, by spelling out the word and each child explaining a little about what it means to be responsible. We got to see a lot of names up on our SEL Word of the Month Wall for being responsible students this month! December's SEL Word of the Month is "honesty".

Today was "Pajama Day" at Oak Hill, as you can tell from the picture below! :-) It is always fun to get to go to work as a grown adult and dress in my comfy PJs!! ;-) A parent volunteer, my intern, and I also put up our "Giving Tree" today, so that it will be all ready for next week! If you are unfamiliar with "Giving Tree," it is a great opportunity for you to give back this holiday season and give to a family in need. We have many families at OHE who could use a little help for the holidays and we will be providing those families with gifts, but we need a lot of help from you! We need somewhere around 272 gifts this year! There are two ways to give: you can get an ornament directly from our Giving Tree starting at the book fair kick-off, Tuesday, Dec. 2 next week, which will have a certain gift and age of a child on it; or you can go on the following website to sign up for a child and gift of your choice: 

Giving Tree runs from Dec. 1- Dec. 8, so please be sure to sign up for something and bring it in by Dec. 8. We hope to be able to provide all of our families with help this year for the holidays and we really appreciate everyone who donates generosity!! I hope you all have a safe and wonderful Thanksgiving break!! 

Monday, November 17, 2014

No Place for Hate at Our World, Our School

Last week I was in all of the 2nd and 3rd grade classrooms giving lessons on conflict-resolution, using Kelso's choices. I also ended the week with my group of No Place for Hate kids running a table at the Our World, Our School cultural event. This was a great opportunity for the No Place for Hate coalition to encourage kids to sign a pledge to live a hate-free life and receive a No Place for Hate pencil as a reminder of that pledge. Being accepting and knowledgeable about different cultures is a very important piece of living a hate-free life. The more we learn from each other, the more likely it is that we will respect each other and our differences. I am so glad that our school encourages this type of learning and am glad to have been able to be a part of it. Here are some pictures from the event:





I had such a good time there and I think everyone else did, too! It was so fun to get to watch all of the different cultural performances also. This week I will be in the 4th and 5th grade classrooms for guidance lessons on conflict-resolution. More to come on that at the end of the week. I will also be going into my fourth week of small group sessions with PK-5th grade. Each day of the week I hold about 2-3 small groups of kids from PK-5th grade during their lunches. Those same groups of kids will meet with me for six weeks total. We eat lunch together and play games, have discussions, or read stories related to our group topic. We cover feelings, families, friendships, social skills, managing our emotions, and much more. These are going great so far and the kids always look forward to coming. I get a lot of kids who aren't in small group begging for me to let them come have lunch with me and I wish I could take them all!! Unfortunately there is one of me and over 800 students, but I am glad I get to see all 800+ students in the classroom for lessons at least! 

I hope everyone has a great week!! 

Friday, November 7, 2014

Kelso's Choices and Cultural Heritage Day

This week I had the pleasure of visiting all Pre-K, Kinder, and First Grade classrooms. We read the story, Please Stop, I Don't Like That and discussed ways we can be respectfully assertive in letting someone know their behaviors toward us are bothersome. The kids had fun repeating this phrase with me throughout the story and even getting to practice using it with a partner.

We then talked about what happens when you do tell someone, "Please stop, I don't like that," and they still don't listen to you. I introduced Kelso's Choices this week: 

There are many choices students can make to solve all of their small problems and peer conflicts each day. If you try one choice on the wheel and it doesn't work, try another one. If you have tried two and it still isn't working, you can choose to try another, or go get help from an adult. We discussed how they should always try at least two choices, though, before seeking help from a teacher when they have a small problem. Of course, if they are having a BIG problem, which we have talked about in a previous lesson, they should seek help immediately. At the end of our lesson we got to watch this fun video about Kelso's Choices from Kelso himself: 

The kids LOVE it, but unfortunately they make me feel old when they have no clue that this is a remake of "Ice Ice Baby" by Vanilla Ice! ;-) Next week I will be in 2nd and 3rd grade classes and we will also introduce Kelso's Choices.

We ended the week with Cultural Heritage Day today and had students and staff wear something that represented their ethnic background and culture. It's always fun to see the cultural diversity within our campus! I am a huge advocate of making sure our students and staff our culturally aware and sensitive, so I enjoyed this Student Council Spirit Day very much! Here are some pictures, including one of me showing off that I am half Mexican by wearing my "Kiss me I'm Mexican" shirt and wearing a Swedish wooden heart around my neck with a Swedish passage to show off my Swedish half!




Have a great weekend!!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Great Parenting Tool

One of my fellow counselor friends passed on a website with a very helpful tool for parents who need help or resources for dealing with a student with behavioral, emotional, and/or academic difficulties. This website is interactive and lets you answer specific questions about your child's needs or issues. Some of these issues include, attention, hyperactivity/impulsivity, organization/planning/time management, spoken language, listening comprehension, social skills, motor skills, and help with academic issues in reading, math, or writing. Check it out, it may be of good use to you! The link is below. Just click "read more" and follow the link.

Understood | For Learning and Attention Issues - Understood
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