Dragons Dig Deep

A Mental Health Newsletter from the CHS Counselors

September 2020

Behind every mask is a smile!

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How Do I Contact My Counselor?

In order to keep everyone as safe as possible, the CHS Counselors are using email to set up office appointments with on-campus students. That way, there are fewer students and shorter wait times in our reception area. For both in-person AND virtual students, we encourage you to email your counselor with any questions, and we will be happy to converse with you there, make an appointment, call, or set up a video chat.

Please click on the CHS Counseling link below to go to our school webpage, where each counselor has set up a virtual office. In our virtual office, you can click on the stars to access our email, find resources, see office hours, and much more!

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Welcome Back to School, Dragons!

Whether your student is learning in-person or virtually, we want to take time this year to cultivate and deepen relationships and design opportunities where adults and students can connect, heal, and build their capacity to support each other. We understand that it's important to create safe, supportive, and equitable learning environments that promote all students’ social and emotional development. We look forward to a wonderful year ahead!

Starting a new school year in uncertain times can bring many emotions, including anxiety. Anxiety is a common feeling of nervousness or worry. When those feelings stop your children from having fun or doing normal activities, they may need help reducing their anxiety.

How to Help

• Breathe. Practice calm breathing together by taking slow, deep breaths.

• Challenge negative or irrational thoughts by having your student ask reflective questions like, “What evidence is there that makes this thought true or not true?” or “If it did happen, what could I do to cope?”

• Plan. Help your student prioritize and break down tasks into smaller, more manageable steps.

• Be calm. Model confident and calm behavior.

• Establish an at-home routine. Schedule time for homework, fun, meals, and a bedtime routine.

• Support a healthy lifestyle. Provide healthy meals and time for physical activity. Maintain an appropriate curfew so your student gets enough sleep.

• Identify thoughts and name emotions. Describe to your student what you observe and ask in a clarifying manner if that is what is occurring. Instead of assuming or telling your teen what he or she is feeling, help them to develop the ability to name and regulate their emotions by asking questions about how they feel.

• Communicate. Set aside time to talk one-on-one with your student. Connect emotionally by listening and giving eye contact. Validate concerns and avoid lecturing. Parents need to put our phones down, too!

• Get help. Talk to teachers about any concerns you have about your student. If you are concerned your teen may have an anxiety disorder, talk with a counselor, doctor, therapist, or other mental health expert.

Can I Change My Schedule?

Thanks to excellent students and a fantastic staff, CHS had a smooth opening to school last week! With very few exceptions, every student had a complete schedule from Day 1, and for the most part, adjustments to schedules have been made.

The next opportunity for changing schedules is Sept. 14-18 for course levels only. According to the CISD Academic Planning Guide, students may drop an Honors, Pre-AP, or AP course to go to the regular level of the course at the end of the first three weeks and end of first four weeks with administrator and parent approval, as well as teacher/parent contact. The Student Request for Schedule Change Form will be available from the student’s counselor and must have the appropriate parent and teacher signatures before it can be accepted.

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