Lesson Help is Here!

There is a point in every school counselor’s life when everything begins to pile up. It’s at this very moment that we realize our creative lesson planning has taken a back seat. 

I was trying to think what I needed most during these times. READY TO USE LESSONS! I needed a place where I could go that would have everything I needed in one place. And not just a creative, cutesy lesson, but one that built on our ASCA mindsets and behaviors  AND also hit all my students’ social-emotional goals. 

Well that’s exactly what I’ve decided to offer you! You see I may not be in the school every day any more, but every day I do hear how much my lessons made a difference and how much my kiddos miss me. So, if I can’t use them, someone should!  Continue reading →

Handprints

I did this lesson back in March to conclude our month of practicing curiosity. But, this lesson would be a great May lesson, as well.

This lesson incorporates a review of character skills from December on (mine was obvious only a 3 month review, but you could easily review as many months as you want), as well as recognizing things that we’ve had to LEARN how to do.

I’m almost jealous of all the people who can use this lesson in May as opposed to March. What a great review of all the new things you’ve learned over the course of a year!

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A Healthy Amount of Curiosity Never Killed The Cat

Our 4th new character skill was curiosity. This one was especially hard to teach because so many students were taught that curiosity would get them into trouble. I had to reframe their thinking into remembering that curiosity leads us to learn new things. All learning starts when we are first curious about something.

I taught grades K-6 a variation on the same lesson and I have them all . . . yes I know it’s a lot . . . outlined below. I have labeled them by grade level, so feel free to skip down to the one that most interests you.

Screen Shot 2015-04-21 at 1.19.55 PM Continue reading →

Everything is Awesome

Back in December, I switched my character skills to some that might have more learning potential than our original 6 traits that we practiced in the past. You may remember my post about this. We began with Grit, moved into Optimism, and then on to Zest. Continue reading →

Promoting Your Program Through Monthly Newsletters

I apologize for the throughly lame title to this post . . . but I honestly couldn’t think of a cute, witty title  . . . Don’t judge a book by it’s cover, I promise this will be worth the read!

Last year, I started writing up monthly newsletters for the parents. I wanted to promote my program, so they knew what their child was learning during “Character Education.” During my first year of counseling (as the first counselor at the school), I kept battling parents who were truly angry when they heard their child came to see me or that I went into the classroom to teach a lesson. They figured if their child saw the counselor then there was one of two problems:

1. Their child was spilling all the family secrets

and/or

2. Something was wrong with their child and he would come talk to me

and inadvertently, even though he was only 4, he would spill all the family secrets. Continue reading →

Choosing Friends

I did a more advanced lesson about this in 4th grade a couple years back. The lesson had them think more globally, than my current 1st grade lesson. It wasn’t at all my favorite lesson I’ve ever done and in fact, I don’t think I even wrote about it. But this lesson on the other hand . . . MUCH better . . . maybe just more age-appropriate, but who knows.

I picked this lesson from Puzzle Pieces because I thought it was a good explanation about our responsibility to appreciate others, especially those who are different than us (and as my boys know . . . our differences are what make us special). We know what is special about ourselves. So how do we find what’s special inside each of our classmates? Continue reading →

Mix it up, Fix up!

It’s that time of year again! What time of year you ask? The time of year when the boys start jumping all over each other’s nerves. It’s that time between parent/teacher conferences and Thanksgiving break when the boys are so comfortable with each other that they begin wondering how far they can push each other before someone loses it.

photo 210 Continue reading →