Character Trait Superpower Poster Freebie

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I am in the process of creating my “Superpower” character trait theme to use in my school counseling program for the coming school year.  I’ve decided to retire my ice cream cones and scoops for now.  In preparation, I started by making a set of eight posters to go along with the character traits adopted by my school district.  Each trait will have it’s own “Super Hero.”  I will use these super heroes to introduce the traits during my classroom counseling lessons each month.

Throughout the school year, students will meet Responsibility Reggie, Respect Renee, Courage Carlos, and Kindness Keisha.  They will also meet Self-Discipline Steve, Integrity Isabel, Perseverance Pam, and Good Judgment George.

Each poster has a picture of the super hero.  The hero introduces himself or herself and says what his or her superpower is.  That hero will then be the face of that trait for the month.  Students will earn a small image of the super hero of the month each time I visit.  I will make super hero shields for each classroom to display their super heroes on throughout the school year.  This will be done similarly to the ice cream scoops I’ve used for so many years.

I am giving Respect Renee to my readers as a freebie.  You can download it by clicking HERE or by clicking the picture above.  Visit my TpT store to purchase the entire set of eight posters for only $3.00.  You can also find activity sheets to go along with each trait and hero in my store as well.  Additionally, both are sold together in a COMBO pack. Click the pictures below to check them out!

Superpower Character Trait Posters- TpT

Superpower Activity Sheets

Superpower COMBO Pack

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Savvy Guest Blogger: School Counselors Rock

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Hi fellow counselors!  I am the author of School Counselors Rock.  I have been a counselor for 14 years and was recently honored by being selected as Elementary School Counselor of the Year for my county.  Even after 14 years, I still love my job and I still get excited about new ideas and resources.  My passion is helping out new, beginning counselors!

I also love FREE resources (who doesn’t right?), and I love resources that my students get excited about.  This past year I used several free, fun resources in classroom guidance that every counselor should know about.  Happy Teaching!!
howardThe first absolutely fabulous site that every counselor should know about is wedolisten.org.  This site has TONS of free resources to go with the Howard B. Wigglebottom books.  You actually don’t even need the books because you can read them online.  The songs to go along with the books are really cute—the kids LOVE them.

simons hook

Another great free resource is the Grandma Rose’s Neighborhood videos on YouTube (1, 2 and 3).   These videos are really cute for 1st and 2nd grade and go along with the book “Simon’s Hook.”  While I love the message in the book, it can get a little wordy for our younger students.  These videos are a great, FREE way to teach the kids the strategies from the book.

pete

If you haven’t come across “Pete the Cat and his White Shoes,” you are missing out.  It is a great resource for teaching about the importance of a good attitude and positive self-talk.  Again you can find FREE resources on the Harper Collins site.  I always use the video on this site for reading the story.  It is much more fun than if I was reading!  Also, you should search for Pete the cat on YouTube.  There are some great videos on there—I love to use THIS video as a fun way to end my lesson.

Please drop by my blog and spend a few minutes getting some new ideas.  And feel free to share some ideas of your own.  Hope to see you soon!

BlogDaisies

Thanks so much, Lisbeth, for sharing these great free online resources.  I look forward to incorporating these into my school counseling program!

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Look Who’s Been “Spotted!”: Scrapbook of a School Counselor

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Look Who's Been Spotted! - Scrapbook of a School CounselorI’m excited to add another blog to My Favorites today!  Scrapbook of a School Counselor is a wonderful school counseling blog authored by Tabitha Panariso.  Tabitha shares a fresh perspective of school counseling with unique ideas for new and veteran counselors alike.   I’d like to take this time to share why her blog is one of my favorites.

  • Tabitha shares her use of surveys and data to help drive her school counseling program.  I was impressed last year by her post Needs Assessments and Thick Skin.  In this post Tabitha fully disclosed her feelings of discouragement and sadness after surveying the staff at her school and receiving commentary on one of the anonymous surveys which “crushed” her.  I admired her first for sharing this with her readers, but mostly for picking herself up, dusting herself off and recognizing her first year was a success and one point of view could not define her entire school year.  The last section of her post is very encouraging.  Check it out!

This year she surveyed grades 3-5 and acquired feedback from her students to assist her with program planning for the coming school year.  She created the survey using Google Drive.  You can read more by viewing her post Surveying Your Student Population.

  • Tabitha has great small group ideas.  One very popular post tells how to make a Worry Box.  She uses this with small groups and individual students.  This activity allows students to share their worries anonymously and helps the school counselor facilitate a discussion with the group regarding how they can relate to those worries.  I like that it can be used to facilitate discussion about any topic of concern for students. More recently, she shared a great girl’s group post.  Her group is called S.A.S.S. which stands for “Stong And Smart Sisterhood.”  In her post, she gives the pros and cons about her experience with the group this year.  She lists several resources school counselors can use when planning a girl’s group. She also shares a photo of a felt quilt the students made at the conclusion of the group.  Love it!!

If you have not had the opportunity to check out this great blog, you can visit by clicking the button below.  It’s great to have bloggers like Tabitha who continue to verify why school counseling  is such an awesome profession.  Thanks, Tabitha!

Scrapbook of a School Counselor Link

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My School Counselor- Freebie Download

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FREE TpT Download- My School Counselor ActivityIf you are already thinking about your Meet the School Counselor lessons, let this FREEBIE be one activity on your list.  It’s a simple activity sheet for school counselors to use with students as they discuss their role within the school.  It can be used like a note taking sheet or a review activity to be completed after meeting the counselor.

The sheet offers a space for students to list reasons to see the counselor.  You may have them brainstorm and share, or you may give them reasons to list on their sheets for future reference.

There are two sentences to complete also.  One says “The counselor is my adult friend because…”  It’s important that students realize how your relationships with them differ from those with administrators and teachers.  The other says “My counselor keeps my secrets unless…”  Your first meeting with students should always include this discussion.  School counselors keeps secrets unless someone is being hurt.

The cloud at the top is a space for students to write what they want to talk to the counselor about.  You can give the students an opportunity to share their clouds privately with you during the lesson as you circulate the room.

You can download this FREE sheet at my TpT Store.

Meet the Counselor GameI’ve also created a product to go along with my Meet the Counselor game shared in my post Meet the School Counselor Ideas from last year.  In this post I shared about a game I play with my 5th graders which incorporates a Nerf basketball  and goal set.  This product sells for $3.00 on TpT.  However, it is discounted to $2.50 today through Tuesday, July 16th.

Stick around!  You can follow Savvy School Counselor with free email updates.  You can also follow my TpT Store to keep up with my latest products and freebies.


Savvy Guest Blogger: The School Counselor Kind

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Hey there! I’m Kayla, and I’m grateful to be an elementary School Counselor in Maine! Check out my brand new blog: http://theschoolcounselorkind.wordpress.com.

Leap

Splinters: We’ve All Got a Few

My name is Kayla, and I have a few splinters.

It is School Counselor job hunting season! I am lucky to have a position, but I remember all too well my own hunt three short years ago. I hope sharing my story will help others who are currently hunting for their perfect position.

When I was in the biggest job search of my life after completing graduate school, I spent HOURS completing School Counselor and even some Ed. Tech. applications at various schools. This work was tedious and draining. Each time I completed an application, I had feelings of hope that would slowly fade over time from hearing nothing at all or receiving letters of rejection. It was a roller coaster, and it was exhausting. I was building a stack of rejection letters that were rough to read and even touch – I felt like I was failing. All. The. Time.

Finally, after three months and many hours later, I nailed an interview and was hired as a School Counselor in a small school that felt like a great fit for me. My hard work had paid off, and I was so ready to begin my career. Since that interview on that humid day in July, 2010, I have now completed three successful years doing what I love!

Still, it’s important to remember the journey I was on. I kept count, and over the three month period, I completed 15 application procedures, and I was called to interview at only 4 schools; all others, I was rejected. I did the math on this: completing those 15 applications brought me success at a rate of 26.7% in those three months (meaning, I got an interview, at least); this means that I “failed” 73.3% of the time.

The numbers themselves are discouraging to me. But it’s not about that. It’s about the perseverance and resiliency I maintained to eventually reach success. I could have given up after receiving the first few rejection letters; filed them under REJECT or FAILURE and moved on. I didn’t. I stuck with it and tried again, and again, and again, each time getting a few more wounds, each time gaining a little strength. The way I see it is, failing 73.3% of the time doesn’t sound very good, but it’s a lot better than failing 100% of the time because I never tried.

Isn’t there a quote about missing 100% of the shots you don’t take? Yeah, that’s basically what I mean. The rest is just the splinters you have to get to walk your wooden plank and leap. Without a few splinters, it doesn’t mean very much. Remember those splinters – you will heal, and you’ll be a lot more humble.

BlogDaisies

Thank you, Kayla, for this timely advice for those future school counselors who are still in the process of searching for their first jobs.  Congratulations on your new blog!  We look forward to hearing more from you.

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School Counselor, If You Please…

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Blog Photo- July 2Guidance Counselor… I’m not sure if I was just overly sensitive to those words this year or if they have always been used so much!  Unfortunately, most people simply do not realize the term “Guidance Counselor” is outdated.  Even though most of us know and understand the difference between school counselors and guidance counselors, there are things we can do to help those we work with to understand better.  Even if our co-workers don’t completely understand why it even matters, we can always make an effort to make changes within our school counseling programs so the word guidance isn’t so commonplace.  Here’s what I suggest:

  • No More Classroom Guidance: We can’t get away from our curriculum being called “guidance” for now, but why call our classroom lessons “classroom guidance?”  I’m guilty.  That’s “what it’s always been called,” right?  It’s even a category on my blog for heaven’s sake!  About halfway through this past school year, I decided to take Rebecca Lallier’s lead. Rebecca is the author of the blog School Counseling By Heart.  She calls her lessons “Class Councils.”  I began saying “Classroom Counseling.”  I’m not sure that I’m settled with it or not, but it stopped me from using the term classroom guidance.  With a new school year coming up, I’ll take time to address the “name change” with teachers and staff with hope they will catch on.
  • Removal of the word Guidance:  I remember the day I went to get a new ID badge in my school district.  I used to have much longer hair, and I looked nothing like my badge. So, I stopped by to take a new picture after a meeting in the central office building.  I told the guy my name for the badge and asked that he put School Counselor underneath.  He made the comment, “Yes, I know it has to say “school” and not “guidance!”  Surprisingly, I still see some counselors with guidance on their badges.  If you’re telling everyone you’re a “guidance counselor” then that is just what they will call you.  Make sure your email signature says school counselor.  Try not to say Guidance Department but School Counseling Department instead.  Address everything coming from your program as school counseling.  Looking back at the door to my office, I had a sign with my name and school counselor, but I also had a sign that said “Guidance” since I’m in the “Guidance Office,” right?  No more!  I actually took that down well before the school year ended.  This year, I plan to make a big deal about making the word guidance disappear like magic.  I’m thinking about making one of those red “no symbols” and putting it over the word guidance just outside my office.  While I’m at it, I’ll probably look into having a t-shirt made.
  • Spread the Word from Day One:  When all else fails, drive it home with your students during your classroom counseling lessons. Children love to “know more” than adults.  Case in point:  During my carpool duty one afternoon, I was speaking with a parent.  The parent’s mother was in town and was also in the car.  She told her mother I was the kids’ guidance counselor.  Her kindergarten student quickly said, “She’s the SCHOOL counselor.” :)  That made my day!  Make a big deal about it during your lessons.  Hopefully the classroom teachers will be  within earshot and learn a little something as well!

Truth be told- No one calling us “guidance counselors” is doing it to intentionally make us cringe-and we do cringe!  They just don’t know.  So, let’s make a pact this coming school year to make an effort to squash the term once and for all.  It may not be easy since some from the old school just can’t let go of the term, but I’m sure we can turn some things around if we make the effort.  Are you in?

If you need a great article to back it all up, check out Marie Isom’s blog post School Counselor (yes!) vs. Guidance Counselor (no) on the South Carolina Counselor Cafe blog.  Her post says it all.  I especially like where she wrote: “Guidance is a service.  School counselors provide a program.”  There’s also this great post written by Tabitha Panariso, author of Scrapbook of a School Counselor.  Tabitha says, “It may seem silly to get upset over a title. These days though, it’s all in the name.”  If you want to spread the word electronically, there are also those creative eCards Danielle Shultz created on School Counselor Blog.  They say, “I love it when you call me ‘guidance’ counselor,” said no school counselor ever.  I think I may just print one and frame it for my desk!!

Stick around!  You can follow Savvy School Counselor with free email updates.  You can also follow my TpT Store to keep up with my latest products and freebies.