Hello from Monterey’s School Counselling team!
I hope everyone had a fantastic summer. I am so excited to be back at Monterey for my second year as the School Counsellor. Once again, I have the pleasure of working with my student counsellor, Sarah Wilson, who is also your student’s drama exploratory teacher.
This year we have some exciting things planned and I wanted to share some of that with you!
If you have any suggestions on what we can do to make our website more applicable and helpful, please feel free to respond to this E-mail and let me know!
As the school counsellor I also have the opportunity to teach your child during our Mash Up exploratory rotation on Fridays. Some of the topics we may cover in that course are:
- Stress Management
- Conflict Resolution
- Exploring healthy relationships
- Drugs & Alcohol
- Mental Health Disorders
- Time Management/Study Skills
Additionally, I will be running a brainstorm called Peer Helpers where student volunteers can learn how to support their peers and foster lasting relationships, while building self-esteem and self-efficacy. I understand that some students may also want to participate in other Brainstorms so we will also meet weekly (week day TBA).
If you, or your student would like to meet with myself or Sarah, please E-mail me and let me know when you’re available so we can sort out a time and date. For students, they may come to my office at anytime. If I am busy, there is a schedule posted outside my door on the wall and they can put their initials and DIV # during the day/time they would like to come chat and come back during that block.
Additionally, I will be coordinating some games during nutrition break so new and old students can get to know each other better.
The following presentation may be of interest to you this month:
Wednesday Sept 25th: Need2 Suicide Prevention
In this presentation we will discuss suicidality in youth and help parents understand how they can best guide their children who might be thinking or talking about suicide, and what services exist in the community.
Liz Radermacher from NEED2 Suicide Prevention
Date & Time: Wednesday Sept. 25th, 6:00pm – 8:00 pm
Location: Foundry Victoria
I look forward to getting to know you and your students this year, and I hope your start to the school year has gone smoothly.
Mary & Sarah
Also, there is an amazing opportunity to take part in a free online Positive Parenting Conference! The conference runs from May 7th-14th, but you can reserve your free ticket now at the link below:
Good morning Parents/Guardians,
Happy New Year and welcome back! As we head into a new year and a new term, it is a chance for fresh starts, but also potential new anxieties and challenges. There are some useful programs available for you and your children coming up in the near future that I wanted to let you know about to help youth with anxiety.
Teen Mindfulness groups for teens ages 13-17. The necessary criteria to be eligible for this group is that your child must be experiencing anxiety, stress, and/or worrying (no formal diagnosis required), have an ability to attend an Information Session as well as all 6 group sessions, and must not currently be experiencing moderate to severe mental health symptoms. The next information sessions are January 16th and 23rd, from 4:30-6:30pm at the Downtown YMCA, located at 851 Broughton St. Attending an information session is mandatory prior to participating in the program. Register for an upcoming information session by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Or for more information call: 250-386-7511 ext. 413.Information Sessions: Downtown Victoria Y – January 16th & 23rd, 2019, 4:30-6:30pm. Program Sessions: Downtown Victoria Y – February 6th to March 13th, 2019 (weekly on Wednesdays from 4:30-6pm)
First FamilySmart Meeting of 2019 is Thursday January17th – Anxiety: An Occupational Therapist’s Approach. Sean Boulet, an Occupational Therapist with Island Health, is back again to talk about anxiety, not only as it relates to teens, and younger children, but also parents will benefit from Sean’s perspective and experience. Youth and Service Providers are welcome to attend! What will you learn: – Physical, Psychological, Behaviour and Emotion Signs of Anxiety – Strategies to calm and regulate – Exposure Therapy Date & Time: Thursday January 17th, 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm Location : Saanich Neighbourhood Place ( Inside Pearkes Rec. Center ) RSVP: https://bit.ly/2Tug8Kr
A great free resource for you to sign up for is Big Life Journal: https://biglifejournal.com/ where if you click on the “Free Printables” red tab at the right of the page, you can sign up to get fun activities focusing on Growth Mindset emailed to you every Friday!
I would also like to take this opportunity at the start of this year to introduce Sarah Wilson to you, who will be my School Counselling internship student here at Monterey for the next two years. Some of you may already know Sarah as our school’s drama teacher, and I am excited to have her take on this additional role at Monterey. One of the projects she will be working on during this time is keeping our school’s counselling website updated with resources for you and your children on anything to do with counsellor-related topics. Continue reading “Counsellor’s Update Jan 10th”
The following is a power point created by Shannon Husk, Prevention Service Provider, BC Responsible Gambling Program about An exploration of Technology, Screen Time & The Connection to Gaming and Gambling. Please feel free to go through the power-point and using some of the guiding questions with your kids to help them deal with their screen time gaming addiction.
Good Afternoon parents,
As we head into the holiday season this can often be a stressful time for both children and their families. I wanted to bring up how supporting your child’s problem solving skills can help them build their confidence and self-efficacy which can decrease feelings of stress and anxiety and can help build their resiliency and foster their success.
When I speak to students who share that they are feeling stressed or anxious, once we get to the cause of the problem, it is often due to their lack of confidence in their own problem solving skills. For example, some issues such as planning when to do homework and when to play, how to deal with conflict, how to apologize, how to share their feelings, etc. In the end, this all links to their ability to think through a process which can help them to get the resolution they want. Therefore, it can be very helpful to talk to kids about this issues, ask them what they would do, and how they think others would respond do their actions. Another option is to allow children to be a part of family problem solving, for example, how do you choose what to make for dinner? How do you choose who gets to watch their show when there are two shows on at once? What does the process look like when you are choosing whether to buy something or not? Allowing children to engage in these problem solving skills at home, with the support of a caring family member can help them build their confidence and resiliency when they are faced with an issue on their own. My hope is that students will have the chance to practice their skills with guidance and then be able to use those skills independently. Here are some guiding questions you can use with your child:
What would you do if I didn’t show up when I was supposed to pick you up friend school/a friend’s house/etc.? What would you do if you didn’t have a phone? What would you do if there were no phones available? What would you do next? Then what?
When someone says something hurtful to you, what would you do? What would you say? Then what? How do you think they would react?
If you had a problem that you couldn’t handle, and you were unable to reach me, what would you do (at school/at home/at a friend’s house)? (You can also consider giving them a specific example of what the problem might be)
If you had to do your homework, and nobody was around to help you, how would you get started? What materials would you need? How could you get help if I wasn’t here?
Feel free to make up any situation you think your child may encounter in their real life. The more catered-to-them the example is the better as they will be motivated to work through the issue with you.
Also, I have some new resources for you that I thought might be helpful so please read the attached documents as well as the opportunities below:
Shannon Husk, please E-mail me for details
Prevention and Community Engagement Service Provider
ember 6th: Networking and Parent Support Meeting
This month we are having a very different type of parent meeting. Since it is December we are having a combination of parent networking and support.
Here are the details:
Join us for an opportunity to meet other parents who have challenging kids. We will not have a presentation for this meeting. This is one of the few opportunities to come and just get together with other parents. Talk about the good things and the not so good things, the funny things and the hard things.
There will be Christmas snacks and Tea.
Date & Time: Thursday Dec. 6th, 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Location: Saanich Neighbourhood Place ( Inside Pearkes Rec. Centre)
Youth & Family Substance Use Services
See Attached Brochure
2nd Floor – 530 Fraser Street
Victoria, BC V9A 6H7
Phone: 250- 519-5313
Fax: 250 -519-5314