Elective registration has begun for current 6th and 7th graders. I will be going into Core Connections classrooms this week to have the students fill out their elective selections with this form; goo.gl/forms/inKHLk8yzwYPiPme2. The parents will be sent home a form that has their students' selections to review, sign, and send back to school.
Hey Voyager Vikings! Welcome back to another great year of middle school! I am excited to be back working with a lot of my students from last year, the new fourth graders, and a sprinkling of new students. I will miss my 8th grade class from last year though! It is also exciting to be working with so many new teachers. The beginning of the year is in full swing, including keeping my blog updated with information for parents, students, and teachers to see what the counseling department is doing to help students. The goals for the middle school counseling department this year are to keep the blog updated with weekly information, learn all 520 of my students' names, to do a classroom lesson in each grade once a quarter, and to keep a newsletter for all stakeholders with updates on the K-12 school counseling department. Throughout the first month I will be going into the classrooms to introduce/re-introduce myself to the students and remind them what a school counselor can do for them. I am also excited about the opportunity this year to be the boys and girls soccer team coach. Tryouts start next week and I was blown away by the 33 boys who showed up today for the interest meeting. This is going to be a very big challenge!! Hope to see all parents this year in school or on the field! Ready to make this year great!
Today is the first day of career cafes for 7th and 8th grade students. This is a follow-up lesson to the career lessons we did earlier this year. Career cafes will be offered during the students lunch time outside and presented as a discussion based lesson. Each day we will focus on a different set of similiar careers. We will talk about what are the job responsibilities of the job, knowledge,skills, and abilities needed, education needed, average salary, what colleges offer these degrees, what electives could you take in high school, and most importantly what can you do now to make you better prepared for work in the specific field. The schedule is as follows:
Monday, April 25: Psychology/Psychiatrist/Therapist/ Counselor/Social Work
Tuesday, April 26:Singer/ Musician/ Music Producer/ Choreographers
Wednesday, April 27: Lawyer/CSI/Judges/Police Detective
Thursday, April 28: Eighth Grade: Doctor/Paramedic/Epidemiologist/Pediatrician/Neurologist/Surgeon
7th Grade on Field Trip
Friday, April 29: Eighth Grade and Seventh Grade Lunch: Actress/ Film/Video Editing/Director
Seventh Grade Walk Time: Doctor/Paramedic/Epidemiologist/Pediatrician/Neurologist/Surgeon
Monday, May 2: Cosmetology/Hairstylist
Tuesday, May 3: Game Developer
Wednesday, May 4: Medical Scientist/Geneticist/Biochemist/Physicist/Marine Biologist/Chemist/Space Scientist
Thursday, May 5: Fashion Designer
Friday, May 6: Artist/Graphic Design/Animator
Monday, May 9: Entrepreneur
Tuesday, May 10: Athlete/Coach/Radio and TV Announcer
Wednesday, May 11: Marine Pilot/Air Force/Navy/Commercial Airline Pilot/Marine Core
Thursday, May 12: Poet/Lyricist/Creative Writer/Editor/Journalist/Reporter
Friday, May 13: Architect/Drafter
Monday, May 16: Computer Hardware Engineer/Computer Programmer
Tuesday, May 17:Interior Designer/ Industrial Designer
Wednesday, May 18: Engineer
Thursday, May 19: Automotive Tech/Electrical Tech
Friday, May 20: Nanny
Monday, May 23: Teacher
Tuesday, May 24:Sociologist/Anthropologist/ Archaeologist
Wednesday, May 25: Dentist/ Orthodontist
Thursday, May 26: Clinical Nurse Specialists/Neonatal Nurse/ Pediatric Nurse/Occupational therapist/Nurse Practitioner/Midwife/Acute Care Nurse
Tomorrow I will be working with the sixth grade students on decision making. We will learn about the 3Cs Decision Making Model and how they can use that in their daily lives. The 3Cs in the model are Challenge, Choices, and Consequences. Students will use a real life decision and go through the 3Cs to see if they can come up with the best solution. They will have the opportunity to talk with their peers about this decision making tool and how it worked for them. Then they will be given a scenario that calls for a decision to be made, as a group they will use the 3Cs Model to find the best solution through role playing. I hope they enjoy themselves.
I have been trying to get into the middle school classrooms for some time now but because of conflicts in schedule we have been unable to coordinate. Tomorrow will mark the first day of middle school guidance and I am very excited! The eighth graders will start exploring careers through O*Net, which is a short assessment where students answer questions about skills or interests that they currently have and it helps match them with careers that take different levels of education to be hired or successful. The prezi for the students can be found by pressing the button below. Students were asked to pick three careers that they were interested in learning more about from the jobs that matched their interest set. They had to fill out a worksheet that listed the job responsibilities, skills needed, the knowledge needed, average annual salary, and education requirements for each of these three jobs. The students really seemed to enjoy the activity! Walking through the hallway throughout the day and the next you could hear the students asking each other what careers they had gotten or disclosing the careers they were excited about. The eighth graders will have a chance to attend small groups called Career Cafes held during lunch periods that will explore a specific group of careers in more detail. During this time we will talk about what a person in that career does on the job, which electives they should take throughout high school, what majors they could major in college, which colleges in NC offer these majors, and what they can be doing now in middle school to sharpen the skills they will need for the specific career. The seventh graders will do this activity next week, depending on snow days.
The past two weeks I had the opportunity to visit all of the grade classrooms to introduce myself and present on what school counselors' job responsibilities are. The students were all very welcoming and friendly! I appreciated their questions and interest in school counseling. I also want to thank all the teachers who allowed me to come into their classrooms and take over their teaching time. Here is the presentation that I presented to each of the classes: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1qvcfInTfhWeXk8Tiij_MPJxhg5wS8YpxuTYjDV6TRws. Before the presentation I gave the students a pre-test and then after gave them a post-test. I joked with the students that it was probably the only "test" they would have to take where they didn't have to put their name and they could write "I don't know" as the answer. From this information I found that 83% of students in 4th through 8th grade learned more about what a school counselor does. I thought this was pretty impressive for students that have had school counselors for many years! At the end of the presentation I had the students fill out a need assessment. An example of the 8th grade needs assessment is below (each grade was modified a bit to be more developmentally appropriate but they all asked the same questions).
I input all the data for each individual needs assessment into Qualtrics (a statistical survey program that makes the data visual and easier to comprehend). I will take the data, break it down into grade level and then select the topics that would be best served as classroom guidance, small group counseling, or individual counseling; creating my comprehensive school counseling program. The topics that more than 50% of students in that grade stated they needed help with will be addressed as large group classroom guidance. Those topics that 10% or more of students checked as needing assistance with are topics for possible small groups. And I will follow up with students individually based on their academic, career, and/or personal/social needs. From the data collected I will conduct the following large group lessons:
4th: Stress Management, Expressing Feelings
5th: Goal Setting, Expressing Feelings
6th: Goal Setting, Decision Making, and/or Testing Taking/Study Skills
7th: Exploring Future Career Choices, Goal Setting
8th: Exploring Future Career Choices, Goal Setting
The small group and individual counseling will not be posted as of now. I am very excited to be able to work with the students through their classrooms and hope to learn all of their names. I have encouraged them all to practice pronouncing my name and to introduce themselves whenever they see me. The challenge and goal I set for myself for this year is to learn all of the students' names, just under 500 names to learn! Better get to it!