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Counselor Lessons » 5th Grade
5th Grade 5th Grade

I am in the 5th grade classrooms every other week- twice a month - teaching a Classroom Lesson.  Each week, I will post the title of the Classroom Lesson and post supporting documents, if helpful to you, on this site. My weekly calendar (top right hand corner of this webpage) will give you details of what lesson is being covered in your child's classroom each week and the Roosevelt Round-Up (PTA newsletter) will also periodically give you more information.  "Counselor Conversation Cards" will also come home after I am in your child's classroom  to encourage discussion about our lesson in your home.  Students may choose to bring the cards back by the next week and I will have a school-wide drawing each week from returned cards for prizes!  Let me know if you need more information or have feedback on my lessons.

Lesson 1: Who is Your School Counselor? A reminder PowerPoint about who is your school counselor and how we help each other, complete with Potato Points review!  Then we played Counselor Quiz Bowl to check and make sure they know all about the School Counselor and what we are going to do in the 5th grade this year with Mrs. Clark!    

Lesson 2: We discussed what I heard them say about being in the 5th grade -- what they were LOVING about it and what they were concerned about...and then what I was seeing in the classroom, lunchroom and recess --- I really like how I see them working together, including new students, and using the 9 ways we solve problems at Roosevelt in their daily interactions at school. We quickly reviewed those 9 Peacewheel choices and watched the video "It's Your Choice: Kelso 4-6 Beyond the Clasroom"  where we saw kids just like them use the Peacewheel strategies to solve conflicts with siblings and parents.  We saw: three Small problems were students were able to talk about how something made them uncomfortable, make a deal with an older sister, and work together as siblings to get what you both need; two Big problems dealing with stealing and technology safety that emphasize the right choice is to go to a parent first, even though it might get a peer or sibling in trouble.  Using these scenarios for discussions, we brainstormed ways we might talk it out with a parent when we are angry, make a deal with an older sister, or share and take turns with a younger brother. 

Lesson 3: We reviewed those 9 peacewheel choices and watched the video "Real Kids: What We Learned about Bullying". The film showed students talking about what it feels like to be a bully and to be bullied. We watched a few scenarios: a student being bullied, a bully and what options someone has when this is happening, and the role and responsibility of a bystander. We reviewed the definition of bullying as REPEATED and INTENTIONAL meanness --- this can be physical, verbal or written. We also talked about the difference between saying something mean vs. bullying --- it is the person's responsibility to tell someone to STOP or to get help from an adult to be bullying --- the bully needs to hear the person does not like the behavior before it can be intentional and repeated. We practiced what this looks like and modeled this discussion with a few students as examples. We practiced a phrase that always seems to work in giving someone the "signal" that you need them to stop --- repeating "are you done?" in a firm, but calm voice with good eye-contact. In some of the discussion and examples in our film, we discussed physical force, unkind words, or threatening/boasting behavior does not lead to a peaceful ending.  

Lesson 4: Too Smart To Start!  It’s Red Ribbon Week and talking about reasons why they are Too Smart to EVER start using Drugs! We circled around the Bulletin Board Downstairs and discussed what they put down for their answers to “When I Grow Up I Want to Be…” and then I asked them to find if someone could spot a photo where they said they Want to Be.. Addicted to Drugs.   Of course, no one did!   Using drugs in our future is NOT what we plan on doing – keeping future goals and values in mind as well as the Health risks are important and why we celebrate Red Ribbon Week at Roosevelt.   We went back to the classroom and completed a reflection activity.  In pairs they walked and talked about their thoughts about the question” What would if you chose to use Drugs?   Students then wrote about this question.   I skimmed through them and discussed what I felt like “stood out” from their reflections and we discussed as a group.   *See what they had to say in by our bulletin board this week to help emphasize the need to make Safe & Healthy Choices a life-long decision and to stay Smart and Never Start!

Lesson 5:  We entered the "Danger Zone" this week -- a three-part video series helping us explore information about drugs, media around drugs, and refusal skills.  Today, we discussed the influence our peers have on our decisions and ways to say "NO" if you find yourself in the "Danger Zone". In this video, we discussed the difference between an assertive, aggressive and passive response. We tried out several techniques for saying "no" - broken record technique, changing the subject, saying "no" and walking away, ignoring it and leaving the "danger zone".  Also addressed in our lesson today was media - magazine adds, billboards, commercials -- these encourage use in a fun, popular, and attractive lifestyle, not the "danger zone" realities of addiction.  We discussed what they see in the media regarding drugs.  Every student was given a "thinking point" index card at the beginning of the movie - after watching and discussing our lesson today, they shared with their classmates what their talking point.  We will continue the "Danger Zone" series next week and keep reviewing what we we learn each week!   

Lesson 6: We reviewed the discussion cards students used in our last lesson to discuss concepts and important vocabulary for “DANGER ZONE” – working on our refusal skills.   This week we re- entered the "Danger Zone" and explored the Dangers in our Homes - OTC medications, cleaning products/inhalants, and prescription drugs. safety, health risks, peer pressure, and consequences were featured in our video.   As we watched the video we paused often to discuss the “DANGERS” and the decisions they can make if faced with these same scenarios.   We discussed there are many products in our homes that are useful if used for their intended purpose; however, if used as a “high” and not as their intended purpose they can be very dangerous!    

Happy Thanksgiving - have a safe holiday!

Lesson 7: We reviewed key terms from our previous “Danger Zone” videos to keep the terms and learning “fresh”.   Today is our last time entering the "Danger Zone" - this time our video featured information on alcohol, tobacco, and marijuana. Safety, health risks, peer pressure, and consequences were all demonstrated in this video and we discussed the decisions they can make as we watched this video.   We also spend some time discussing a scene - where a young person..about their age...is with an older sibling of a friend who is under the influence and is driving... we discussed, "What would your parents (and Mrs. Clark) want you to do?"  They all knew the answer -- not go in a car with a person under the influence!!! But how?  We role-played some situations and I asked they come home and discuss what you would want them to do!  My role-play with them in any situation they are uncomfortable and need OUT - NOW - is to say they are sick -- they need to go home immediately...say they are going to throw up, say they can't go in the car and go to the restroom - whatever to get a call out to parents and/or next "safe" adult to come get them and THEN tell the safe adult what was happening once you are safe!   Thank you for following up at home on all our “Danger Zone” discussions --- next lesson we will make sure all the important points they have captured and demonstrate they can stay out of the “Danger Zone!”

Winter Holiday – stay warm, be safe, & see you in 2014!

Lesoon 8: It's been a LONG  winter break away from Mrs. Clark and our learning -- so we broke into groups and they brainstormed ideas they remembered from our 3 part "Danger Zone" series.   Groups summarized for us the key learning from each video.   Students took a quiz over the key concepts and then it was time for "Quiz Bowl" Challenge. Taking the main ideas of these three videos, teams fought to the bell to win the most points! They are ready to stay out of the "Danger Zone!".

Lesson 9:  One more "Danger Zone" -- Technology Safety!  We watched the clip "Caught in the Web", a video that explores the dangers of being on-line and how easy it is to get "caught" up in negative, un-safe behaviors.   The clips explored threats of meeting people on-line, how being involved in technology can over-take your life/friendships/relationships, exposure to people and content that is too mature and un-safe, and the importance of keeping parents involved in technology so they can help you be safe.  We discussed how important it is to “think before you click” in order to avoid embarrassing yourself or hurting others, while keeping yourself and others safe. While the Internet, smart phones, tablets, computers, digital cameras, and on-line gaming is so much fun, it is always important to be smart about what you say and whom you befriend online!  . **We celebrated our Good Listening Points from 1st semester with a Potato Party – thank you Mrs. Mill’s class for earning the reward!

Lesson 10:  Whew, we made it out of the Danger Zone and now we are talking about why it is important to make all those Safe & Health Choices --- because they have LOTS more to learn in school, experiences to have, and a bright future ahead of them!   Appreciating who they are and others, knowing more information about themselves and others, and using the tools to be successful in school and relationships is key to that bright future!  So - How are we different? How are we the same? Is your Best Friend just like you...like the same things, play the same things, like the same foods? We introduced our next topic by playing the game "Eye to Eye". Through this fun game, students experience that their answers were NEVER always the same as their friends and they take some pride in what UNIQUE choices, likes/dislikes, and preferences they have --- so if this is what they do in our game, why do we say things like: you aren't good enough to play this soccer game with us OR she can't be my friend because she dresses weird OR he is a sissy and doesn't do "guy" stuff?? Self-respect, uniqueness, appreciation of differences and tolerance were discussed in this lesson. 

Lesson 11: Now that we know - everyone has unique ideas and not everyone sees "eye-to-eye" on every problem, idea, or situation.....What’s your Style? Conflict Management Style that is! We discussed your “style” is the way you handle conflict when people disagree about something. To help student understand their style, we took a Quiz assessing how he/she would approach something like ex. when two of my friends disagree, I try to help them reach an agreement or when I don’t agree with a decision, I do what I want to do instead. Styles were: Shark: can be bossy, aggressive, threatening, and intimidating, goal-oriented, has a need to win, not concerned with what others think, Turtle: avoids or withdraws from conflict; would rather hide and ignore conflict than resolve it; tends to give up personal goals and be passive; Owl: Works together with others to find solutions to conflict, sees conflict as a problem to be solved, prefers to find solutions that are okay with everyone; Teddy Bear: smooths things over, ignores their own goals and resolves things by giving in to others, relationships with others are important; Fox: compromising style, concerned about relationships and goals, willing to give up some of their goals while convincing others to give up part of their goals too. As a class we discussed how each style resolves conflict in a different way. We discussed each style and what works in conflict for that “style”. We discussed they need to keep in mind what works for your style may not work for another – so think, what is their style and how can I approach the conflict – what are my options? We concluded about having them reflect about the ‘style’ of his/her best friend, mom/dad, teacher, and siblings.

Lesson 12: Lesson 12: Picking up where we left off with our Conflict Management Style Assessments last week, they evaluated their preferences and we discussed how each style resolves conflict in a different ways. We discussed each style and what works in conflict for that “style”.  We discussed what they need to remember for what works with their preferred style and what may/may not work for another – so when you are in a conflict, always think “what is their style and how can I approach the conflict – what are my options?”  Students wrote down an example of a conflict they have with peers – siblings – adults and then I chose a few to discuss in their preferred “style” groups of how he/she would approach the issue.   Great ideas and examples that really demonstrate how different people approach solutions and conflict!

Spring Break- enjoy & be safe!

Lesson 13:  Do you know your RU?  Roosevelt University, that is!   We know our students are "going on" after high school, but where did their teachers go?  Students were paired up and then they were given a staff member to "highlight" for our RU bulletin board.   Using Career Information System and Interview Questions, students will investigate a college, find out first-hand information from their staff member, and create a learning tool for our whole school to use!  Today we went through what was expected of the project, why the information is being collected in CIS, and discussed the questions they will ask the teacher.  **See RU document below for more information! 

Lesson 14: Part 2 of our Roosevelt University Project - we hit the computers and researched his/her staff member's college in CIS - Career Information System.   Students found out information like: where it was located, how many people attended the school, Public/Private/Urban/Rural, High School Courses you need to get into the college, Average GPA, School Mascot, Clubs & Activities offered and More!   Next week they will take this information and make posters combining the College Facts with the Interview.  Not only are they exploring a College, they are really enjoying getting to know more about our Roosevelt Staff!  

Lesson 15:  Time to put all our RU research on Paper -- students used the time in my classroom to work with his/her partner and start their Poster summarizing all they learned about the Roosevelt Staff Member's College.   **See these displayed by the Teacher's door next week as we celebrate "Going On" and how important this step is in their future!  In celebration of their work, the whole school was encouraged to wear their favorite College gear -- see some photos on my webpage!

Lesson 16:  Oh how young they are to be so plugged in!   We talked about those "Danger Zones" this year, but due to some recent 5th grade Social Media "buzz" at our school, we are re-visiting how to be a safe, respectful, and responsible Digital Citizen.   Det. Sarah Hill from the Boise Police Dept. partnered with me on talking about INSTAGRAM & SNAPCHAT -- why we love them, why we should be concerned about our personal information and photos, what their parents need to know, and how to handle different situations that come up --- rumors, unkindness, "morphed" photos, privacy issues, and healthy boundaries.  

Lesson 17: Are they Safe? Checking in to see if they set their profiles to private, blocked anyone that was causing "issues" for them, and talked with their parents about what they needed from them to keep safe.   It is our concluding lesson where TATU - Teens Against Tobacco Use through the American Lung Society presented 5 informational and interactive stations for our students!    Student presenters from Borah High School presented information about the facts of Tobacco use on your body, awareness of the chemicals in cigarettes, statistics, and hands-on activities -- literally!!  The favorite station is always the Pig Lungs where students were able to see and touch a healthy lung and a lung damaged by tobacco.  TATU is a great resource in our community and a very impactful presentation to get young people thinking about the long-term effects of tobacco use and reasons to say NO to tobacco use in their future!

Have a great summer - stay safe, keep learning, and record those experiences to share with us in August!



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Wendi Ellis-Clark, School Counselor
Boise School District - Roosevelt Elementary
908 E. Jefferson Street
Boise, Idaho 83712
208-854-6030 (phone) 208-854-6031 (fax)