The Settles Bridge Elementary Counseling department believes in the personal potential of each and every student. We are pleased to offer several small group counseling opportunities throughout the year to assist students to reach their full personal and academic potential. The groups are usually six to eight sessions meeting weekly/biweekly. The groups are typically closed ended groups, meaning that students are not added to existing groups (after the groups have begun) unless there are extreme extenuating circumstances and group dynamics allow for new members. All groups are confidential. Students are considered for group participation based on teacher/administrator recommendations and parent request.
There are several possible small group topics including the following:
- Peer Relations and Social Skills
- Self Esteem
- Anger Management
- Changing Families/Divorce
- Managing Stress & Anxiety and
- Transition to Middle School
A brief description of the groups is listed below.
The Peer Relations and Social Skills groups will focus on assisting students that are struggling with making (and keeping friends) and the potential resulting consequences. Adequate social skills are critical for students to achieve personal success and help each student to reach his/her highest level of learning. Some of the concepts that will be discussed include:
- The importance of healthy self-concept in relation to others
- Skills necessary to interact well with others (respecting personal space, Recognizing/responding to verbal and nonverbal cues etc…)
- How to respect self and others
- The importance of understanding other cultures and personal identities
- Personal responsibility
The Self Esteem group will focus on assisting students that are struggling with healthy self-concept. We believe that students that lack personal self-reliance and confidence are less likely to perform to potential personally, academically, and socially. Some of the concepts that will be discussed include:
- We all have strengths and growth areas (Individuality)
- How to use communication skills to ask for help when needed
- Accepting mistakes as essential components to the learning process
- How to articulate feelings of competence and confidence
- Identifying attitudes and behaviors leading to successful learning
The Anger Management group will focus on assisting students that are struggling with frustration tolerance and expressing feelings of anger. Some students need to learn healthy and socially appropriate/respectful ways to express angry feelings. Students that struggle with anger expression may have a tendency to allow anger to “get out of control” which can negatively impact academic, personal, and social functioning. Some of the concepts that will be discussed include:
- Everyone gets angry
- Anger versus fear
- Recognizing personal signs of anger
- Stop/Think/Act technique as well as Relaxation techniques
- How to ask for help
The Changing Families/Divorce Support group is designed to assist students in family transition. It has been our experience that children seem to cope better with changing families (including separation and divorce, parent remarrying, parent moving out of state, big brother/sister moving out etc…) when they have a chance to share their feelings with others going through similar experiences. Some of the concepts that will be discussed include:
- Acknowledgement of various family structures.
- The expression of feelings regarding family transition.
- The child is not to blame for transition (including Divorce).
- All feelings are acceptable and need to be expressed.
- Healthy ways to release uncomfortable or destructive emotions.
The Managing Stress & Anxiety group focuses on stress management. Students will learn about the meaning of stress, how stress affects their lives, and how best to cope with the effects of stress and anxiety at home and at school. ... Some of the concepts that will be discussed include:
- Increase student knowledge about stress and anxiety
- Reduce stress & anxiety by building physiological, cognitive, and behavioral coping strategies
Transition to Middle School mini-groups meet in the spring for one to three sessions during lunch period and is designed to support students in their successful transition to middle school. Students benefit from talking to others about their feelings and recognizing that they are not the only ones who have anxiety related to middle school. Some of the concepts that will be discussed include:
- Acknowledgement and expression of feelings related to middle school transition
2. Normalizing anxiety and feelings related to middle school
3. Healthy coping strategies for transition to middle school