Monday, July 21, 2014

Reaching Higher: Professionally & for my Students

After #ASCA14 it's tough not to be inspired to #ReachHigher professionally and inspire my students to do the same, and work towards developing a better leadership mindset.

My mind was buzzing after hearing about the First Lady's Reach Higher initiative, and even more so after hearing her speech in person and reading the letter from Arne Duncan.

I am so elated that people who have a lot more exposure than we do are taking an interest in the work we have been doing for so many years. I feel like a miracle has happened and more are sure to come.

I am in the process of working with my principal to write our SMART goals and Annual Agreement for the school year. I enjoyed using the newest edition of ASCA's publication, Making Data Work, to facilitate the process, and definitely kept the #ReachHigher initiative in mind throughout our discussion last week.

Professional Growth

I completed the ASCA Bully Prevention Specialist coursework and now I'm just waiting to hear back on my Action Plan-- I've heard that this takes a while (like 2 months at least) so if you submitted yours a while back and haven't heard anything yet, don't fret. I was lucky enough to get the School Counseling Data Specialist course for free while at ASCA14 and I also completed that coursework this month. I can get involved with the FREE Data, Data, Data course by the great Trish Hatch which is anticipated to be available in early August.

If you plan to complete the ASCA Data Specialist course I highly suggest you read Hatching Results first (And if you have the time, take the FREE Data, Data, Data course--it will only be free for a limited time).

About the Students

As far as the students, below is one goal I am able to share today; I usually have at least 5 program smart goals.

I am excited to join SCOPE in the #ReachHigher photo project, and we hope you will too! Read all of the details here and submit your photo by July 25.

I took a trip to the banks of the Mississippi River in Ellis Grove to the Pierre Menard House to take my photo for the project. I chose this spot because it is a registered National Landmark and has rich political. and historical context, and to depict the "reach" of the First Lady's initiative.

Here are some more photos from my trip: 

Summer Kitchen and garden 

Read more about the Pierre Menard Home here
I am also planning to:

-update my lessons this year to reflect the new ASCA Mindsets & Behaviors,
-change the timelines on some lessons (so I can hopefully achieve all of my SMART goals this year), and 
-try to incorporate a new lesson focus on grit and taught through in conjunction with the math department into my plans.

I will share more as the beginning of do the school year draws closer.

I hope you too have big plans to reach higher professionally this year and look forward to inspiring your students to #ReachHigher as well.

School Counselor Space would like to take the SCOPE photo project one step further by asking everyone involved to change their Twitter and/or Facebook profile photo to their #ReachHigher photo on July 28 only-the day of the Reach Higher White House Summit at Harvard. The First Lady has shown us a lot of love, let's SHOW her some love back!

Don't have your goals ready yet? No problem! Just snap a picture with a piece of paper that says:

"I am a School Counselor and I support #ReachHigher."

And make it your profile picture.

Read my blog post outlining 5 ways to support the initiative here.

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