Mabank Counseling Connection

September 2021

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Dear Parents,

The 2021-2022 school year is in full swing, and in the early morning light we're just beginning to feel the hope of Fall temperatures creeping in. Teachers, students, and staff are hard at work as we move deeper into the semester.

September is National Suicide Prevention Month, and it is so important now, more than ever, to talk about and address the mental health issues facing our country and our students. This month's newsletter is chock full of information and useful resources. Check out our offerings below- from knowing the signs of mental distress to self-regulation, parenting in a pandemic, the brain-breath connection, down time, graduation requirements, and more, this issue of the Mabank Counseling Connection is filled with helpful tips and information.

We see the long stretch of all the things that must be accomplished by... Homecoming, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Spring Break, Graduation, and the end of the year. Let us remember three things. First, we are not doing it on our own: reach out for help when needed and lean into the support of your co-workers, family, friends, and Mabank ISD Community. If you are concerned that you or someone you know may be experiencing a mental health problem, it is important to act. Start the conversation. Seek help from a trusted adult. A parent, a teacher, a counselor. A list of area Mental Health resources and hotlines can be found on our district counseling website under Counseling and Human Resources. You are not alone. Second, take it one day at a time. Live each day in the present, knowing that you will have what you need for the next day when you get there. Rest when the day is over with the knowledge that you've done enough (you are enough!) and you deserve rest after the day is done.

Lastly, breathe. :)

Have a great September 2021! Embrace it one day at a time.

Ashley Ward, MS, LPC

Coordinator of Counseling and Student Support

Mabank ISD

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Concerned About a Friend?

You might not be certain your friend is displaying worrisome signs regarding their mental health. Click below for a few signs to look for that a friend may need some help:

Noah Cyrus | Seize the Awkward | Ad Council
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36 Questions to Help Kids Make Friends

This 36 questions activity can help children build closeness with someone they don’t know well.

Self-Regulation and the Brain and Breath Connection

Momentous Institute has been building and repairing social emotional health for nearly a century. Almost anywhere you look, the research confirms what we know to be true – that people with solid social emotional intelligence are happier, healthier and more successful.

All lessons are built on safe relationships and move up through self-regulation, awareness of self and others, empowering students to be change makers themselves. As we wrap-up Safe Relationships, we move to the next step in our Social Emotional Learning- Self-Regulation.

Self Regulation breaks down the importance of the Brain-Body connection, Breath work, Feelings, Body, and Impulse Control. First up are the roles the brain and breathing play in self-regulation.

What Is It?

The brain guides everything that you do: how you move your body, make decisions, experience emotions and deal with stress. When children understand how their brain is connected to their emotions, they are better able to manage those emotions.

Breath is a tool for self regulation that aids in managing impulses and emotions.

Why Is It Important?

Kids benefit from learning how the brain works because it helps them to understand their thoughts, emotions and behaviors.

Breathing is a tool that your children (and you!) can use to relax and think clearly.

"Just Breathe" by Julie Bayer Salzman & Josh Salzman (Wavecrest Films)
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How to Practice Mindfulness

Cultivating mindfulness can help you overcome negative emotions, live in the moment, and not dwell on the past. Try these tips from Kaiser Permanente to get started.

3 HOURS Relaxing Music "Evening Meditation" Background for Yoga, Massage, Spa

Downloadable Apps for Self-Care

▪ Breath2Relax

▪ Breathe, Think, Do with Sesame

▪ Best Self-Help Quotes

▪ Mindfulness Coach

▪ Mind Yeti

Down Dog, Yoga for Beginners, HIIT, Barre, and 7 Minute Workout - free until January 2022

If you are a student or teacher (K-12 or college), go to for free access until July January 2022.

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