Tuesday, December 31, 2013

"Hatching Results" Giveaway

A couple of weeks ago I announced that I would be giving away one copy of Trish Hatch's latest book, "The use of Data in School Counseling-Haching Results for Students, Programs and the Profession," and today the fun is set to begin.

As a professional school counselor I pride myself on erasing the "G" Counselor title and stigma, so I am using that mission, in conjunction with a pivotal question from the intro of the book, to drive this giveaway. 

To enter the giveaway I would love for contestants to answer the pivotal question in the comment section below and enter the official contest, powered by Rafflecopter. The contest will open January 1, 2014 and close at midnight, January 31, 2014. The winner will be selected at random, notified via email and announced here.

The Pivotal Question
(adapted from page 11 of Hatching Results, reprinted & depicted with permission)

How might school counselors overcome their historical struggle with professional illegitimacy and become vital imperative leaders, advocates, and systems-change agents in schools? 

Feel free to use the solution focused questions from the photo above to guide your answer. If you're not sure how to answer the Pivotol Question, just leave a general comment below, all entries will be considered.

There is no right or wrong answer to the Pivotal Question, as all of our paths, districts, students and approaches to addressing systemic change are different; the goal here is to create dialogue, promote professional growth and inspire one another to begin to address this necessary task.

**IMPORTANT...you must leave a comment below in order for your entry to count.**

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway ends January 31 at midnight CST. Open to Legal Residents (18 years of age or older) of the US only. Winner will be selected at random and be notified by email. Winner will have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is selected. The product provided for this giveaway (Sweepstakes)was free of charge from the author. The product offered for the giveaway is free of charge, no purchase necessary. My opinions are my own and were not influenced by any form of compensation. Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are in no way associated with this giveaway. By providing your information for this giveaway, you are providing your information to me and me alone. I do not share or sell information and will use any information only for the purpose of contacting the winner. Void where prohibited.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Promoting your School Counseling Program

On January 7 (7pm CST/ 8PM EST) Chris Wood and I will host a School Counselor Twitter Chat on the topic of PR Tips & Tools for School Counselors that will help school counselors at any stage in their career build or improve community & stakeholder relationships.

Together we will discover an operational definition for "public relations," as it relates to school counseling, share tips & tricks to enhance any school counseling program, discuss what has worked for us, and release our official "Top 10 Tips for Promoting your School Counseling Program."

Check out our official event flyer here and share with those in your PLN.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Keep Calm & Drink Hot Cocoa: Celebrating with those who Support Your Mission & Vision

The end of the semester is nearing, and many school counselors are scrambling to figure out how to afford to say 'thank you' and show appreciation to those who support the school counseling mission and vision and collaborate to make reaching comprehensive school counseling goals that much more of a reality.

Over the last couple of years I have made an effort to say 'thank you' in many different ways. I've caught the Bed Bath & Beyond soap, lotion & candle sales-put stickers on the candles that say "Wise Wo(men) follow the light," made baked goods (cookies, brownies etc.), made "We Wisk you a Merry Kissmas, with hugs & kisses" gifts and many others that I cannot recall at the moment. None of those come close, in my opinion to the latest & greatest idea I picked up from Danielle Schultz at the school counselor blog.

This year I will be handing out small gifts to the cooks and some teachers I collaborate with extensively, but every teacher & staff member will be invited to the "Student Services Office 1st Annual Finals Week Hot Cocoa Bar." Our goal...to keep everyone calm and drink some delicious homemade hot cocoa.

To pull this idea off I searched the web for free printables (see photo to the left) to put on the cups, next year I might work with my amazing graphic design friend to create an actual logo for the festivities. Next I did a little research on what to add to the bar. I narrowed my list down to peppermint sticks, peppermint pieces, mini chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, whipped cream, praline cookies, donuts, donut holes, and peppermint Hershey's kisses.

I picked up a less expensive table cloth at the Dollar Store, a nice glass jar to put the peppermint sticks in, a bucket with a lid for donut holes and cups.

I have a touch of Martha Stuart envy so I decided to make homemade hot cocoa versus buying the packets so I went back to Pinterest to find a great recipe. Once I had a plan, I secured all of the ingredients and I sprung for a percolator since I plan to make this an annual event.

I learned the hard way a long time ago to never try a recipe for the first time when serving the masses, so I tested my recipe out on my family first and oh my goodness was it great; the Vanilla Cinnamon Baileys Irish Cream came after the true taste test. Highly recommend the after thought--after work.

Today I sent out the invitation above and set the table up (see pictures below) with my table top Christmas tree from the attic, teacher gifts & cards and all of the fixings. I made 40 cups of hot cocoa tonight and I will let it sit in the percolator on warm all night so the chocolate doesn't harden over night and I can leave by 6:00 am (I have about a 1 hour commute), to get to work a little early to plug the percolator in to reheat the cocoa for all to enjoy.

I can't wait to share a little holiday cheer with my colleagues...I will post pictures from the event in a follow up post soon.

Let's change the idea of talking at the water cooler and encourage our colleagues to visit their school counseling offices to 'Keep Calm and Drink Hot Cocoa" this and every holiday season because we are appreciative of all they do each day and all they do to help us serve our students.

How do you show your appreciation for teacher collaboration and support each year? Please share your thoughts and comments.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Paying it forward with Hatching Results

I was blessed to review and provide feedback on this excellent school counseling resource written by Trish Hatch, and as a result, I now have several copies.

I don't think it does me, or anyone else, any good to keep them all on a shelf & stare at them, so now its time to spread the word about what school counselors are doing all over the country, why they are doing it and why it's so important that all school counselors start using data, hatch results and share how we can, as a profession, make a difference in every students' life.

So what do I have planned?

Paying it forward...Stay tuned for a School Counselor Space Blog giveaway
I've never done a giveaway on the blog before so I am not sure how I am going to pull it all together, but you can bet it will have something to do with sharing your results or sharing a comprehensive plan reflecting how you will share your results in the future when you land a school counseling position.

Have ideas on what the giveaway should entail? Please leave a comment below.

Want to learn more about the great work of Trish Hatch? Check out The Center for Excellence in School Counseling & Leadership and accelerate your school counseling program today!