See below for the lessons that we have done so far this year!
Lesson 1 - Introduction to the Counselors and THINK
In this lesson, we reminded the students about who we are and how they can come and see us if they have a problem. After that, we introduced them to the acronym THINK, which gives them assistance if they are in a tough situation and are not sure what to say. Using this acronym, students will be sure to make sure they choose their words wisely and using words which will not hurt others. This acronym can also be used for posting online.
Lesson 2 - Bullying Prevention, Being an Upstander
In this lesson, we discussed the difference between rude, mean, and bullying behavior. Then, we defined what it means to be a bystander and an upstander. A bystander is someone who sees bullying happening and does nothing about it, an upstander is someone who sees bullying happening and does something to stop it (such as telling the teacher or telling the bully to cut it out). To reinforce this idea, we read the book "Dare" by Erin Frankel, which is about a student who learns to be an upstander. After the book, the students were able to practice being upstanders with different scenarios.
Lesson 3 - Conflict Resolution
In this lesson, we discussed the difference between conflict and bullying. We talked about how conflict is a normal part of life, while bullying is not. Unlike bullying, if we are having a conflict - we can take measures to solve that conflict on our own before it becomes too big that we don't know how to solve it. We read the book "The Butter Battle Book" by Dr. Seuss. This is a story about a conflict that starts over a very small disagreement and grows into something so big that no one knows how to stop it. After the story, we identified ways that the characters could have solved the conflict before it became too big. Then, students were given a fortune teller/cootie catcher with conflict resolution strategies along with different conflict scenarios. They were encouraged to role play the conflicts with families or friends and use a strategy given to them by their cootie catcher. I told them that if they practice solving conflicts, they would be more likely to solve them on their own when they are in a conflict.
Lesson 4 - Self-esteem
In this lesson, we talked about self-esteem and the importance of trying to have high self-esteem even when others try to bring you down. We read the book "Zero" by Kathryn Otoshi. In this story, zero is a character who has trouble seeing her value. And, the other numbers help her see why she is special and important. After the story, we talked about how others often try to bring us down but it is important to try to bring each other up so we can all see our value. Students then did an activity where they passed around a paper with their name on it while everyone in the class gave them compliments. I encouraged students to keep this paper to look at when they are having trouble seeing their value - then they can see all the great things their classmates think about them.