Parent Tip Tuesday: When to Talk to Your Child’s School Counselor

It was reported by the U.S. Department of Education that many teachers say they don’t often receive information about problems at home from their student’s parents. I think many teachers, counselors, and administrators would agree. But, on the flip side, parents often report that they don’t know what the school expects from them, as parents. It’s a tough balance to know just what information to share with your child’s school and knowing when you may have over shared. In general, anything you can share, as a parent, helps schools become better prepared to meet your child’s specific needs. So the questions remains, when exactly do I contact the school about problems my child may be experiencing?

Helping parents develop confident Continue reading →

Listening with the Heart

There is chart, after chart, after chart of information regarding which gains or milestones a child must hit in their development. Most parents and schools are concerned with cognitive and physical development. Can my kid read when he’s suppose to? Was he an early walker?

There is no doubt that hitting milestones in cognitive development is important, but focusing only on this aspect isn’t looking at the big picture of development. What about play development? Social and emotional development?

As school counselors and play therapists, our whole profession is focused on developing these critical areas of child development. The most overlooked part of a developing child is their ability to play and their ability to relate. I say it all the time, but I’ll say it again. Despite our best efforts, children will not learn how to play or how to relate if you don’t teach them!

A HUGE developmental milestone for school-aged children is the development of empathy.

Empathy for Web Continue reading →

How to Build Mini Sand Trays for Your (School) Counseling Room

I cannot take credit for actually preparing these mini sand trays that are now in my possession. One of my very dear colleagues used these sand trays and many of the miniatures for her research project for grad school. When she was finished, she so generously donated them to me for my play room.

I can speak first hand about their making because I am also proud to say that this dear colleague is one of my best friends and so I was there (watching) with her the whole time.

Setting Up Mini Sand Trays

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How to Subscribe to The Counselor Stop by E-mail

Happy Monday everyone! A while back I talked about how there was a new look and name coming for counseloretc. Well, that time has arrived!

I have officially transitioned from this site, to my own site, The Counselor Stop. This site should directly forward on to The Counselor Stop, but I know there have been some hiccups along the way. I would hate for you to miss out on the new-age of counseloretc., my posts, articles, tips, tricks, advice, etc.

How To. . .subscribe to The Counselor Continue reading →

Why I Turned Down The Opportunity of a Lifetime . . .

I recently read an article in Psychology Today that talked about reinventing yourself. It hit home  . . .

True to form, I am just as reactive to situations as any good six year old boy. I see it every day, I’m asked about it everyday . . . how do we get student A to start thinking and stop being so impulsive? In these situations, I have all sorts of tricks and ideas as to why these students are impulsive, how to get them to stop acting and start thinking, but when it comes to myself  . . . . when the going gets tough, I have a horrible track record of jumping ship.

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Fresh Start

We started our 2013-2014 school year last week and some things have changed!

There were many things I wanted to change about my program throughout last year. Instead of getting overwhelmed, I jotted down all my “enhances” (we shall call them that instead) and decided I’d started these enhances this year. Continue reading →

One Year Down . . .

Well, I made it through my first year of being a school counselor. 7 years in education total, wow!

photo(9)It wasn’t easy in the least bit. Not my best year, and definitely not my worst. I think sometimes at the end of the year after all the stressors, everyone’s opinions about my effectiveness, and my uncertainty about whether or not I made a difference, all I can do is focus on the negative aspects of my year. I felt unappreciated, I felt the teachers didn’t understand the base I was giving the children to become effective in later years, I wanted to see results, and I had to constantly remember that in counseling you give the tools and may never see the “fruit” of your work. A frustrating year, yes! A year to learn from, YES! Continue reading →

Self-Esteem Quilt

There are so many things that have surprised me about counseling this year. How often I’m needed, how much the boys love coming to me, how many times the boys can tell me they’ve had lunch bunch, how many times I see boys doing exactly what my textbooks told me they’d be doing, how often I’d actually have parents thanking me . . . I could probably write an entire post about all the things that have surprised me.

But NOTHING surprised me more than the amount of boys I’ve seen who struggle with self-esteem issues. I thought this was primarily a “girl” issue. Yes, I know  . . . way to be sexist, way to hold misconceptions, way to totally miss that by 3rd grade (even though I spent most of my teaching years in this grade) boys are becoming hard on themselves, embarrassed by most things, insecure about their decisions, the list goes on! I’m ashamed to even admit it. Continue reading →