Saturday, November 06, 2010

Use of Video Clips

Last month, I began large group guidance lessons in 4th grade on conflict resolution and in 5th grade on conflict resolution, bullying, decision making, peer pressure and careers. I always try to bring into the classroom the most interesting materials - so that I increase the likelihood that the skills I teach will be retained by the students.

A few years ago, a colleague of mine introduced me to United Streaming (at This service is purchased by my school district for our staff to use in their daily instruction. Videos are streamed from a classroom computer, to a LCD projector and then onto a classroom screen, wall, or Smartboard. Speakers hooked up to the classroom computer will project the sound throughout the entire classroom.

If you have access, it is very easy to sign up. Once you do, you can search the thousands of video titles. You can access entire videos or parts of videos through United Streaming. Once you find those you would like to use, you can save them to "My Content " for easy access when you arrive in each classroom. The videos can be easily paused to engage students in discussions. Additionally, it is so easy to switch from one video clip to the next. Gone are the days of fast forwarding a VHS tape!

My colleague and I utilize video clips to compliment and supplement our large group guidance lessons. We have found that the kids relate to the scenarios portrayed in the videos, which seems to really "drive home" the topics we have taught in class.

For suggested titles or questions on the use of video clips, please feel free to comment to this blog posting.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

"Me" Time

As I headed back for my 13th year as an elementary school counselor...a bit later this year than usual...I had that same anticipation and excitement. The only difference with this year's first day as compared to the others - I slept the night before. I wondered why this was...probably because my colleagues kept me informed during my absence and I had an idea of what I was walking into. Upon my return, at times, the kids made me feel like I had superstar status! So fun to see everyone again!

 I am a school counselor who is driven; driven to present the best classroom guidance lessons, small support group sessions, and individual contacts, driven to be as organized and able to manage my time the best I can, driven to connect parents and students to outside resources, and driven to have a positive rapport with staff and school community. I prefer a schedule and some sort of plan. I want to provide my students and their families my best. Every school year brings it's challenges. No school day is ever the same, nor is there ever a mundane day. It's exciting, draining, fun, and stressful all at the same time!

There are moments in our lives that force us to reflect. We may ask ourselves, "What is really important? Is change necessary?" I had this reflection time the past few months and out of this reflection time came my personal goal for this school year.

This school year I am taking a stand for myself. I am making a point of taking care of my health and well being. I need to focus on making the most of my "out of school time" so that I am able to be at my best for those students, staff, and parents during the school day. Taking walks with my dog, enjoying time with my family, reintroducing regular exercise, reading, and pampering myself with the occasional massage and pedicure! All those things I find personally rewarding, rejuvenating, enjoyable, and relaxing.

You too, can give yourself this "me" time! Enjoy every single second of it - for you and for them!!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

New Blog and Figuring Things Out

This is a new blog for elementary school counselors. This is just a test because I am trying to figure out this awesome blog template!