Counselor's Corner

Kalan Hoskins ~ Grades 1 and 3 ~ DECEMBER 2014

Guidance Updates

1st Grade

This month in first grade we are continuing our focus on the Skills for Learning in Second Step. The first lesson is on "Self-Talk for Learning." Self-talk means talking to yourself out loud in a quiet voice or inside your head. Self-talk helps you focus and maintain attention. Our second lesson this month is "Being Assertive." Being assertive involves using an assertive posture (face the person you're talking to, keep your head up and shoulders back) and an assertive tone of voice (use a calm, firm voice; use respectful words). Assertive communication is the best way to ask for help.

Make sure to join with the activation key SSP1 FAMI LY71 to watch videos about the Second Step program and get information about what your student is learning.

Auto B Good ~ Character Education

Welcome to the Tullahoma Superspeedway! The Auto-B-Good series presents character traits that will captivate, entertain and educate students. This month's lesson is on Cooperation and is called "Digging for Gold." "Digging for Gold" tells us about the great things that can be accomplished when we work together. Izzi and most of her friends were really surprised to be helped by the cars from Vehicleville. Our friends discovered it is everyone's goal to improve- to grow- to make our world an even better place to live. The lesson was: You achieve more by working together...come sleet or snow, cooperation is the way to go. For more info about this series, check out their website at

3rd Grade

Third grade will have their second lesson in the Steps to Respect program. This month, our focus will be on the friendship skills of: "Making Conversation & Finding Things in Common" and "Joining In." The skills the students will be taught are:

Conversation Steps

1. Decide what you want to talk about.

2. Ask the other person friendly, respectful questions about the topic you’ve chosen.

3. Show that you are a good listener:

• Look at the person who is speaking.

• Nod your head or say something to show that you understand.

4. Say something to show that you are thinking about what is being said.

5. Ask another question if you’re finished talking about the first one.

6. End the conversation politely.

Joining a Group

1. Stand nearby, look, and listen.

2. Say something positive or ask questions.

3. Ask to play or join.

4. Say something helpful or find a way to help.

5. Ask again to play or join.

Check out the Stop Bullying website at We will view a few of the webisodes from this site during each Steps to Respect guidance lesson as time permits.

December Classroom Guidance Schedule

Almond: Dec. 5

Cox: Dec. 3

Falkner: Dec. 19

Klager: Nov. 24

Landis: Dec. 3

Norman: Dec. 17

Randle: Dec. 1

Coleman: Nov. 21

Garrison: Dec. 12

Levinson: Dec. 19

Pleasants: Dec. 5

Polleck: Nov. 19

Rose: Dec. 8

Weber: Dec. 15

Small Group Counseling

Small group counseling is offered to students to support and enhance the development of personal and social skills and to support and promote academic success. Small groups provide not only additional social-emotional learning experiences but also allows the students a chance to belong, a chance to express themselves, and a chance to benefit from the support of group members. Children may be referred to certain groups by teachers or parents.

Small groups that are wrapping up at the end of December are:

1st grade Friendship & 1st grade Leadership

3rd grade Friendship & 3rd grade All About Me

New groups will be starting in January and run through the end of February. Each group can have a maximum of six students. The groups that are planned next are:

1st grade All About Me (3 spaces open!) The focus of this group is on building self esteem/concept. It will allow students the opportunity to share feelings and learn some skills that will help them to have confidence in themselves.

1st grade All Stars (1 space open!) This group has a sports theme and involves creatively "coaching" students. The skills "coached" include: effective listening & paying attention, positive self-concept, controlling impulses, organizational skills, setting & reaching goals, learning to relax, and successful communication. "Home Practice" activities will be sent home each week to involve parents as "coaches" too!

3rd grade School Success (1 space open!) The focus of this group is to teach academic skills (organization, study tips, homework tips, test taking tips) that will help them to be successful in school.

3rd grade Keep Calm and Carry On (4 spaces open!) The group will identify various roots of stress, the possible effects, and teach practical coping strategies. Students will be taught ways to cope with stressors using visual, auditory, tactile, cognitive, relaxation, and physical strategies.

If you feel there is a particular group from which you believe your child would benefit, please email, call, or send a note. Thanks!

Special Announcements

Family to Family Angel Tree

Our "Family to Family Angel Tree" has become a holiday tradition. It has come to symbolize the spirit of the season and the nature of our Ab Combs Elementary School community.

A BIG THANK YOU to all of our generous sponsors this year! We have 128 angels on our Angel Tree this year and they have all been sponsored! Please return your gifts, wrapped and labeled with your angel number on Wednesday, December 10th. Please hold your gifts until that date, as we have limited space to store the presents. The pick up date for Angel Tree gifts will be Monday, December 15th. Thank you so much for your generosity!

AB Combs Annual Food Drive

The Backpack Buddies Program at A.B. Combs provides children from food-insecure homes with weekend meals during the school year. The children receive a backpack containing six balanced meals and two healthy snacks a the end of every week. We currently sponsor 11 children who receive backpacks full of food each week! Our annual food drive will benefit Combs students directly & our community partner, Interfaith Food Shuttle Backpack Buddies Program.

The food drive started November 24th and the last day is this Friday, December 5th. Each classroom is challenged to collect 50 items of food! Students will participate in a Parade of Giving on Friday and each student will put 1 can item in the food collection.

Most needed items: Shelf Stable Milk boxes and Canned Meat. Canned fruits, vegetables, noodles, cereal, 100% juice boxes & healthy snacks are also welcome. Items NOT to bring include pop-tarts, cookies, juice pouches, sugary cereals, candy, soft top applesauce/fruit/jello, and spam/Vienna sausage.

Thank you for helping A.B. Combs & Interfaith Food Shuttle!

Shout Out!

Holden & Hannah Watkins - They asked their friends to bring in donations for our school's Backpack Buddies instead of bringing presents for his birthday celebration! Thank you Holden & Hannah!

Girls on the Run - They decided to donate shelf-stable milk for our Backpack Buddies Pantry. We always need milk for Backpack Buddies! Thank you!

Big image

Your Counselor

Hi! My name is Kalan Hoskins and I am very excited to be part of a school that teaches and internalizes Covey’s 7 Habits and recognizes that all students are leaders. I graduated from East Carolina University with a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work and a Master’s Degree in Counseling. I am also a National Certified Counselor and a Licensed Professional Counselor. I began my counseling career in a non-profit agency in 1999 and started working as a school counselor in 2001. I will be working part-time with Mrs. Trueman on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. When I am not at Combs, I enjoy spending time with my family, especially my three sweet children!

Kalan Hoskins, 50% Counselor, Grades 1 & 3