Friday, January 23, 2015

Wrapping Up With "No Name Calling Week" and Career Lessons

Today was our last day of "No Name Calling Week"! We finished up by showing everyone at the assembly today how many mean words we threw in the garbage and how many compliments we put on our "Wall of Compliments"! My No Place for Hate coalition members worked really hard on Thursday helping me tape down all the compliments kids had placed in our "compliment box"!


What a fun week it was with all of our activities! This week I also saw all of the PK, kinder, and 1st grade classes for guidance lessons. It was a little different this week because I couldn't walk out to the kindergarten annex because of my broken foot, so all of the PK and kinder kids got to come check out my office and watch a Howard B. Wigglebottom video on getting along!

Here are some pictures from last weeks lesson with 2nd and 3rd grade on careers:


We learned about what "interests" are, the difference between a job and career, and also wrote about what our interests are and some ideas we have for careers we may be interested in. We had a discussion about how our interests often match up with the careers we choose. No one wants to be in a career for a good portion of their life, if they have no interest in it! Please continue to have these conversations early on with your kids at home and about how important getting an education is. The earlier we start discussing this with them, the more likely they are to succeed, believe they can do it, and be prepared. College isn't always for everyone and it's okay if that's not what you choose, but we discussed that if you have a college education, you will have more opportunities, more choices of careers, and often times will make more money. It can also make you more desirable to hire and in case the career that doesn't require college falls through, you will have a solid back up plan.

We also talked about how we can always change our minds if we don't end up loving the career we are in; we have so many choices! I used the example that I was a teacher for seven years first and then I decided I wanted a change and went to grad school to get my master's in school counseling and now I love being a counselor! They asked if I would change my mind again and I said, "You never know, but I really don't think so! I love what I am doing and working with all of you!" :-)

Next week I will be in 4th and 5th grade classes to continue with career lessons. Have a great weekend!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

No Name Calling Week

This week is "No Name Calling Week" and we will complete or promote an activity each day this week that is related to kindness, not calling each other names, and sticking up for each other and what's right. This will be our second out of three required school-wide activities we need to do to be designated a "No Place for Hate (NPFH)" school again this year. My NPFH coalition of kids will help me this week by making announcements over the intercom each day with facts/statistics about bullying and also help in putting together some of the activities. Here is a breakdown of what this week's activities are:

Tuesday, Jan. 20: Compliment Day- Each student will write a compliment down on a small piece of paper that they have thought about saying to someone and my NPFH coalition will collect all of the compliments in the school and tape them to one big banner. We will display this banner later in the week as our "Compliment Wall". This helps to reinforce saying positive things about each other and looking for the good in each other rather than the negative.

Here's a picture of what our Compliment Box looks like where I am collecting the compliments:


This picture was taken this morning, so we are not done collecting all 800+ compliments yet! My NPFH Coalition will have a lot of work to do taping these to our banner!

Wednesday, Jan. 21: Take a Stand Against Name Calling Day- On this day kids will choose to be an ally and not a bystander. If they see anyone being put down, made fun of, or called a name they will stand up for that person. They will let the person who is name calling know that they don’t agree with what they are doing and it is not funny. If necessary, they will tell a teacher or an adult they trust.  They just might end up making a new friend.

Thursday, Jan. 22: Crumple Up Mean Words Day-  On this day all students will write a mean word they have called someone in the past (this can be anyone; it doesn’t have to be at school) on a small strip of paper. Then, they will crumple that paper up and add it to the trash bag that is at the front of the school, labeled “Mean Words are Garbage.” There is only one place at Oak Hill for unkind words and that is in the garbage. We want the kids to see how many mean words we can get rid of by filling up the bag and to make a promise to not use that word again towards someone.

Friday, Jan. 23: Kind Words Day-Let’s spread the love at Oak Hill and forgot all our differences. Students will bring a nice to note to their friends and to someone who they don’t normally play with or hang out with. They could also give a nice note to their teachers or other staff members, showing them their appreciation. Everyone will focus on saying kind and loving things to everyone they come in contact with on this day! Teachers can participate in this, too!

I look forward to all the kindness and love that should be spread this around our campus this week and love seeing the kids get into it, too! I will share a picture of our big "Compliment Wall" when it is all done! 

Friday, January 9, 2015

Welcome Back and Dress for Success Day

Well it has been an interesting week for me coming back from break! I had a wonderful break! I got to spend Christmas with my boyfriend's family and then my mom surprised me for my birthday, which was January 4th, with tickets to the Alamo Bowl to see Kansas State University (my alma mater) play against UCLA. She lives in Las Vegas, NV, so I was so excited to not only go to the game in San Antonio, but to be able to see her and have her come visit me in Austin. She returned to Las Vegas January 3rd, the day after the game and then came my birthday, Jan. 4. It was a wonderful birthday having dinner with my friends and then upon leaving my celebration I tripped on an uneven surface and broke my foot! :-( I was out a few days this week, but returned on Thursday and have been doing okay; just trying to walk as little as possible, which is quite a joke in my job...I have to walk around ALL the time, so who was I kidding thinking I could try to stay off my feet! ;-) It has not been too bad, though, and everyone has been very sweet about it. I am glad to be back!!

I will be wearing this lovely gem for at least the next three weeks! At least I don't have to have a cast! :-) 


It's always so nice to get a "get well" note from a caring student!! :-)

Today was our Student Council Spirit Day, "Dress for Success Day" where the students dressed up as people in careers that they are interested in. It's always so fun to see the kids dress up and see what they aspire to be! We've got a football player, veterinarian, doctor, paleontologist, astronaut, and "the first female NFL player" pictured!! So fun! 



We also changed our Social Emotional Learning (SEL) word of the month for January. Last month's word was "Honesty" and the third graders performed a fun song at one of our school assembly's last month about being honest and what the word means. Each teacher writes names of students on our word of the month wall each week who have demonstrated honesty, or whatever the word may be. 

Hopefully our new board will be filled up even more for January with kids who are doing a great job demonstrating confidence!! Encourage your kids to be confident and honest at home, too! 

Next week I will back to my regularly scheduled lessons and will be teaching a career lesson to all students in Pre-K, Kindergarten, and First grades. We will play a fun game with some career finger puppets, read a really funny story about choosing a career and write about what we want to be when we grow up! 
Have a wonderful weekend and try to stay warm!! :-)