Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Parent University


The School Counselors and I hosted our very first Parent University in the Fall of this year. Parent University is a night of workshops that enhance parenting skills.

Workshops that were provided.... (We requested parents input by survey)

*Panel of Parents: How to Raise Responsible Children
*Working parents (Balancing Home, Work, Kids, etc.)
*Anger Management (Children)
*How to Communicate with Your Children

Through meeting and collaborations throughout the first quarter...Here's how it all went down....

**Dinner, childcare, and transportation were provided.

**We have six elementary schools in our corporation. We asked each school's PTO to contribute $50 to create a $300 budget....mostly going towards food.

**Speakers in our community volunteered their time.

**At the end of the night we asked that parents complete a survey. Each parent left with a door prize donated by community businesses!

**Teachers volunteered their time serving in kitchen and helping out with childcare.

Overall, it was a great success. We had about 30 parents show up!!! I believe parents left with a little more tools in the "Parenting Toolbelt!"

As I am writing we are about to embark on another Parent University tomorrow night! We, as a team, looked over the surveys and  discussed what worked and what didn't work.  We feel we have tweaked it and it will be even better!

I will let y'all know how it goes!!!!

Friday, October 12, 2012

I'm Back!

I'm Back! Sorry It's been a while! I've been crazy busy with home, family, school, and life! I'm pretty excited to begin sharing again! Since I've been away I have been addicted to Pinterest! What a great way to share ideas! The only problem is I have been looking at all the great ideas, but not actually TRYING the great ideas!

One thing I am excited to share is that the School Counselors and myself are putting together a monthly newsletter! It's been fun writing for "Silcott Spotlight," my section of the page! I share parenting tips. Tips that I have had to learn the hard way by raising my son and daughter! I encourage my readers to learn from mystakes! Sharing failures with my readers can be quite humbling, but it can also be a bonding mechanism. Lets face it. School staff can be intimidating to parents. I know I'm still a little intimidated when I'm in the Principal's office. A Principal's office and all that it represents has a very lasting effect on children! By sharing with readers that I do support and work with families, parents, teachers, students and the community, this doesn't mean that I don't need support too! Like I tell a lot of people, no family is perfect! Escpecially mine! WE ALL NEED SUPPORT! We all need to seek guidance. I believe we are all in this together!

Which makes me think of this blog! Whoever is reading this probably has a job like mine. Those who are kind enough to post school ideas on Pinterest probably have a job like mine. We seem to be uniting through technology! I feel like I have been mentored by some great ones like Danielle Schultz, Marissa over at Marissa's Blog, and Tabitha Panariso! I love all the ideas that I see at my schools and knowing they originated from the kindness of those willing to share!

I know it's time for me to contribute! So keep in touch...more is on the way!

Saturday, January 21, 2012


"No Name Calling Week" is January 23rd - 27th. This brings another opportunity to bring awareness to bullying. I'm using  a lesson plan using the song "MEAN" written by Taylor Swift. The words she uses brings a great message to her listeners.

I love Taylor Swift! She is a great role model that our kids can relate to! I'm always referring to her when I ask my students about different ways of coping. I ask, "What does Taylor Swift do to cope with her feelings and what is going on in her life." They shout, "Singing and writing songs!" It's neat to see the look on their faces that shows they never really made the connection!

The lesson starts with the classroom excited about the opportunity to hear the Taylor's song "MEAN!" After listening, the kids are given a worksheet with the lyrics. Using English Lesson Plan using "MEAN" we decipher the song and discuss how it can be interpreted as a  promise to herself to be successful!

Some discussion questions....
Do you think Taylor was bullied in school? If you had to guess.... Why?

What is Taylor's message to those who bullied her?

How did Taylor Swift persevere?

One of her famous quotes is "If your lucky enough to be different, never change.”  What makes you different? Have you ever wanted to change that? What made Taylor Swift different? Did she change or embrace it?

What are you doing for "No Name Calling Week?"

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


I'm always soo excited when I come across a great website!! Especially one that offers freebies! I stumbled across Values.com  and found so many resources! One message from this website is to "Pass it on!" So........I'm passing this on to you! You can complete a request form for a free DVD and poster set! It takes about 4-6 weeks to receive it in the mail! I was happy to receive mine this week! The DVD is continuous 60-90 second "TV commercials" that represents different values! I'm trying to brainstorm all the possible ways I can get these great messages to our students! So far, I'm thinking.....

a) play the DVD on an ENO board in the GYM where kids meet in the morning before school
b) play the DVD in the cafeteria during lunch
c) before or after awards ceremonies

How would you share this DVD?

I also received three big posters! There are several free printable posters offered on the website. There is even a section where you can share and read other inspirational stories from readers! You can even make your own billboard sign with your own picture nad message! How neat would this be to create for a student?

Have you "stumbled" upon a great website like this? Do you take time to PASS IT ON?  

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


RESULTS of Mother Daughter Movie Night...........

*approximately 6 students along with their moms came
*Library proved big enough
*ENO board was easy to operate (was worried about that one!)
*we ordered enough pizza (was worried about that one too!)
*great movie!
*met some great moms!
*good discussion

Mistakes.......to learn from!
*should have advertised more
*Make sure to inform Custodians before the event!
*In retrospect, I should have had a table of resources about RELATIONAL AGGRESSION. (What was I thinking? Duh!)
*MAKE SURE VIDEO WORKS! I rented the movie from the video store. BIG MISTAKE! The video kept freezing up. YIKES! I COULDN'T get it to work. We tried restarting it, cleaning disc, skipping chapters/scenes. One parent could feel my pain and offered to call her husband who might be able to help via cell phone. STILL DIDN'T WORK. I did what I tell my students NEVER to do....I GAVE UP! I apologized and suggested we GIRL TALK! We went straight to discussion about Relational Aggression. Another parent began trying to fix the DVD, which I wanted to tell her not to bother at this point! MAGICALLY, she got it to work! The movie started playing and I didn't exhale until the movie was OVER! I kept imagining the movie stopping 10 minutes before it was over! WHEW! After this experience I have now ordered a brand new copy of "Chrissa Stands Strong."

Overall, the message was shared with all who came. Hopefully, mothers and daughters left the library and talked more about girl drama and how to cope with it!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Mother/Daughter Movie Night

   In efforts to bring awareness to RELATIONAL AGGRESSION, our school counselor and I are hosting a Mother Daughter Movie Night. We have invited girls and their mothers (or grandma, special Aunt) to come together to watch American Girl Movie, "Chrissa Stands Strong." The movie is about a young girl who moves to a new school and is bullied repeatedly by her female peers.

After the movie we will group mothers/daughters and provide discussion questions.

Discussion questions can be found here!

More activites that relate to the movie can be found here! http://www.americangirl.com/movie/chrissa/

We will be serving Pizza afterwards!

Our Mother/Daughter Movie Night is scheduled for tomorrow at 5:00. I will be sure to let you know how it goes!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Personal Space

Ahhh......the importance of personal space! I'm not sure about you, but I find myself teaching about personal space on a daily basis! I have used different size hula hoops that help visualize the amount of space needed depending on the person. I have role played the scenario with another teacher to help show and point out body language that helps cue the "space invader." I will say- this did seem to help show my students how it can make others feel uncomfortable......with the help of some serious over-acting! Another great resource is the book, "Personal Space Camp."

Sometimes we discuss how we all have our own personal "bubble." We feel safe in this bubble! We then take turns blowing bubbles. If bubbles are found "stuck" to another we say they are invading their neighbor's space, and then we proceed to pop them.  They LOVE this activity!
These would get popped for sure!
How do you teach personal space with your students?