The Counselor Connection

October 2020

6 weeks down!

Well, this has not been a typical start to the school year but it has been filled with joy, laughs, learning, and lots of SPS love! The night before school began, I was full of apprehension and anxieties. How would the students cope with all the changes? How would they feel not being able to get close to their friends? How would we, the staff, manage masks, social distancing, teaching, AND still create relationships with all the students? It didn't take more than a couple of minutes on that first day to realize that we had nothing to worry about because at SPS, students are resilient! Staff is incredible! And relationships abound!
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What the counselor's been up to...and what's on the horizon!

Intro Lessons
  • Have taken place in each grade K-8
  • Began by talking about how learning looks this year compared to the spring - school work in comfy clothes vs. school in uniforms, school work at home vs. school in class at desks with masks...great conversations!!!
  • K-3's intro lesson was on active listening (see below)
  • 4-5's intro lesson had to do with the increased expectations and prep for middle school
  • Middle school intro lessons included results from a back-to-school survey (see below) and some tips to help with stress, test taking, and organization

New Students

  • Over 120!!! Yes, over 120 new students have joined our SPS family! How incredible!?!
  • In previous years, I would have lunch bunches with all new students and a buddy (student who is not new to SPS). This year, social distancing is preventing that from happening.
  • The 20-21 plan - New Student Meet-n-Greet!
  • Meet-n-Greet will begin within the next week and consist of just a quick check-in, a get to know you question, and the option for a follow-up if requested.

Check-ins & Consults

  • Checking in with students has been a huge focus this past month! I've missed seeing faces and love reconnecting with the kids!
  • Consulting with teachers has been so refreshing for me and a much needed part of my days. We work together to figure out what needs the students have that I may be able to help with. We talk about new students and if there is information needed to help make their transition successful. And we support each other, because 2020 has been rough!
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Give Me 5 - Active Listening

Eyes are looking at the speaker. If they are not, what sign am I showing to the person talking?

Ears are listening. If my body or eyes are not looking for facing the person talking, my ears are turned away also. And if I am distracted by something else, are my ears able to tune out that noise to hear the person who is talking?

Mouth is quiet. If I am talking, am I able to hear the person I'm to be listening to? Are others around me able to hear?

Body is still. If my body is moving, is it making noise? Is it distracting to others? Is it distracting me?

Brain is ready to learn. If my brain is thinking about something else, is it able to hold onto what the speaker is saying?

Middle School Survey

Here are the results from the middle school back to school survey.

Habit 1 - BE PROACTIVE

Habit 1 really ties in with the concepts introduced in Intro Lessons. Being good leaders means being able to be a responsible learner. It's important for older students to recognize that they are in charge of themselves. If they are struggling with stress, organization, or figuring out how to study, we want them to take the initiative to seek out help. We want them to know we are here to support them, and that they are in control of what happens if they don't ask for help. For younger students, being proactive begins with being able to recognize what the expectations are and doing them without being asked. A simple start to this is active listening.
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Happy!!!

It's REALLY difficult to not see smiles because they are often hidden behind masks. So, to overcome this obstacle, each student in grades K-8 was taught the sign for "happy." Now, we can show we are happy to see one another by the use of this sign!

October Schedule

Click here to see Mrs. Waters' schedule for the month.

Mrs. Lindsey Waters, M.Ed.

Mrs. Waters lives in Shade Gap, PA with her husband, Shawn and two children, Easton (age 14) and Emerson (age 9). They also have two dogs named Tuff and Sky. Mrs. Waters got her Masters degree in school counseling from Shippensburg University in 2011 and has been working as a school counselor since then. In her free time, Mrs. Waters enjoys reading, baking, and being with family and friends. She loves being a part of the St. Pat's family and feels blessed to work with the students and staff of SPS!