Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Target Dollar Spot Gems 2013-2014 school year

Since we got out of school for the summer, i have been kind of MIA from the blogging world.  i decided to take this time to sharpen my saw, spend time with my family, and help my boyfriend recuperate from knee surgery.  However, the school year is quickly approaching, so I'm excited to once again prepare for an even better year than last year!  That's always my goal: to do at least one thing each year to make it better than the last.  I always tell myself "this is going to be my best year yet!"  Of course ip,an to use my new data strategies, I'm always excited to find new things to use with kids.

 So, last year I posted about some of the awesome things I found in the dollar spot section of Target that I can use in my school counseling program.  As the school year is quickly approaching, I was excited to see what I might find this year. Here's what I bought:

Bulletin Board Border: although I don't have a bulletin board, I trout I might use this around my whiteboard to make it look a little more kid-friendly

ID card holder: last year, my ID badge ripped where it attaches to my lanyard so I had taped it...not cute. As I was perusing the dollar bins, I came across these ID badge holders in various colors and knew I had to get one.

Sticky Googly Eyes: I couldn't pass these ups..oh the possibilities in creative counseling! I'm excited to use these in individual and small group counseling.

Beads: one of my favorite things to do in my friendship groups is to make friendship bracelets, so I'm always looking for cheap ones to add to my selection.

Doctor Kit: finding this was like hitting the jackpot!  I have dabbled in play therapy over the years, but am trying to learn more about it and add to my play therapy kit.  I learned some more about it at a regional conference in April, and will be learning more this year from Heather Thompson, a professor at Western Carolina University, who has specialized in (and done a lot of research in) play therapy.  It's doctor's kit will be a great addition.

Stickers: kids love stickers..and I do too!  I plan to use these for positive reinforcement in small groups and to celebrate successes in individual counseling.

Finding these "gems" always helps to motivate me to kick off the school year (and when I need a little reminder of why I do what I do when times are tough). It's funny how some little things that only cost $1 can bring so much excitement to a school counselor. 

One more thing that I wanted to share is not a new gem, its an old one! I love the idea of keeping a worry box in my office for kids to let go of their worries and "leave them with me." In the past, I've always used an empty Kleenex box that I decorated.  I had remembered that I used to have a little tin box with a lock (I used it as a piggy bank because it has a slit on top). I decided to ask ,y mom if she still had it, and she did!! I am so excited to put this to use as my new worry box! I love the idea of locking away their worries until another time when we an pull them out to revisit them (this is part of the process discussed in What To Do When You Worry Too Much).

What kind of gems (new or old) have you discovered this summer to use in your school counseling program?