National School Psychologist Awareness Week 2015 will be celebrated from November 9-13, 2015, to focus public attention on the important role of school psychologists in promoting school and life success for students. School psychologists work with students and teachers every day to promote wellness and resilience, reinforce communication and social skills, and increase achievement academically, socially, behaviorally, and emotionally.
Political commentary video on recent comments made by Jeb Bush.
The internet, cell phones, and modern communication technology is a new area of learning for us parents. Especially, as it applies to our kids and their use of it communicating with others. What is your stance on monitoring, educating, and setting boundaries with these technologies in your family?
A great resource that I have use as a tool to help filter and understand this topic of teaching technology safety has been Common Sense Media.
Common Sense is dedicated to helping kids thrive in a world of media and technology. We empower parents, teachers, and policymakers by providing unbiased information, trusted advice, and innovative tools to help them harness the power of media and technology as a positive force in all kids’ lives.
The Parent Concern page on Common Sense Media really helped me understand how to get to answers for our family. Similarly the Advice page is informative as well.
“One looks back with appreciation to the brilliant teachers, but with gratitude to those who touched our human feelings. The curriculum is so much necessary raw material, but warmth is the vital element for the growing plant and for the soul of the child.”
I am so lucky to work with fantastic, caring, and dedicated teachers! Here are a few videos that can give a parallel peek into what I see in my schools. Thank an old teacher that inspired you.
Suicide does not discriminate. People of all genders, ages, and ethnicities can be at risk for suicide. But people most at risk tend to share certain characteristics. The main risk factors for suicide are:
Depression, other mental disorders, or substance abuse disorder
A prior suicide attempt
Family history of a mental disorder or substance abuse
Family history of suicide
Family violence, including physical or sexual abuse
Having guns or other firearms in the home
Incarceration, being in prison or jail
Being exposed to others’ suicidal behavior, such as that of family members, peers, or media figures.
The risk for suicidal behavior is complex. Research suggests that people who attempt suicide differ from others in many aspects of how they think, react to events, and make decisions. There are differences in aspects of memory, attention, planning, and emotion, for example. These differences often occur along with disorders like depression, substance use, anxiety, and psychosis. Sometimes suicidal behavior is triggered by events such as personal loss or violence.
In order to be able to detect those at risk and prevent suicide, it is crucial that we understand the role of both long-term factors—such as experiences in childhood—and more immediate factors like mental health and recent life events. Researchers are also looking at how genes can either increase risk or make someone more resilient to loss and hardships.
Many people have some of these risk factors but do not attempt suicide. Suicide is not a normal response to stress. It is however, a sign of extreme distress, not a harmless bid for attention.
Jane Pearson on Warning Signs for Childhood Suicide
It’s a question asked by parents, educators and health professionals. How do we prevent suicide among our children? In this special podcast series devoted to Children’s Mental Health Awareness Day, Dr. Jane Pearson of the National Institute of Mental Health talks about important warning signs that come from children. She also looks at how well-intended reaction to tragedy can have unintended consequences. Dr. Pearson is with the Division of Services and Intervention Research at NIMH and a leading expert on suicide research.
Call the toll-free National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The service is available to anyone. All calls are confidential.http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org
I opened my email today and saw an article that said, “Bite your lip today”. As I read further it went on to say don’t say anything negative today. I like to think that I am positive (most days), but I like the idea of hanging on to noticing the content of what I say and do. So for today I will definitely be taking inventory of my positive out put.
Modeling this behavior is important for kids to see especially at school. I know at home with my own kids when visiting the beach or park we try to pick up some trash while we are there to keep it a little cleaner than we found it. I think the same concept should be played out with the people we interact with as much as possible.
A popular book in school is “How to fill your bucket”. Many schools have adopted this metaphor for being a good citizen. Below is a kid friendly reading of the book.
After reading the book here are some classroom ready materials to use.
My Middle School just took on Project Based Learning. I am excited to see increased student engagement and physical projects that represent their current learning.
Project Based Learning is a teaching method in which students gain knowledge and skills by working for an extended period of time to investigate and respond to an engaging and complex question, problem, or challenge.
Why Project BasedLearning (PBL)?
Project Based Learning’s time has come. The experience of thousands of teachers across all grade levels and subject areas, backed by research, confirms that PBL is an effective and enjoyable way to learn – and develop deeper learning competencies required for success in college, career, and civic life. Why are so many educators across the United States and around the world interested in this teaching method? The answer is a combination of timeless reasons and recent developments.
PBL makes school more engaging for students. Today’s students, more than ever, often find school to be boring and meaningless. In PBL, students are active, not passive; a project engages their hearts and minds, and provides real-world relevance for learning.
PBL improves learning. After completing a project, students understand content more deeply, remember what they learn and retain it longer than is often the case with traditional instruction. Because of this, students who gain content knowledge with PBL are better able to apply what they know and can do to new situations.
PBL builds success skills for college, career, and life. In the 21st century workplace and in college, success requires more than basic knowledge and skills. In a project, students learn how to take initiative and responsibility, build their confidence, solve problems, work in teams, communicate ideas, and manage themselves more effectively.
PBL helps address standards. The Common Core and other present-day standards emphasize real-world application of knowledge and skills, and the development of success skills such as critical thinking/problem solving, collaboration, communication in a variety of media, and speaking and presentation skills. PBL is an effective way to meet these goals.
PBL provides opportunities for students to use technology. Students are familiar with and enjoy using a variety of tech tools that are a perfect fit with PBL. With technology, teachers and students can not only find resources and information and create products, but also collaborate more effectively, and connect with experts, partners, and audiences around the world.
PBL makes teaching more enjoyable and rewarding. Projects allow teachers to work more closely with active, engaged students doing high-quality, meaningful work, and in many cases to rediscover the joy of learning alongside their students.
PBL connects students and schools with communities and the real world. Projects provide students with empowering opportunities to make a difference, by solving real problems and addressing real issues. Students learn how to interact with adults and organizations, are exposed to workplaces and adult jobs, and can develop career interests. Parents and community members can be involved in projects.