Counseling small groups are a part of Amelia County Elementary School’s Comprehensive School Counseling Program. The general goals of the small counseling groups are (1) to help students learn effective communication skills, (2) to help students learn valuable coping skills, (3) to help students recognize how feelings and behaviors are related to academic performance, and (4) to provide an opportunity for children to help each other through sharing feelings and experiences in a safe environment.
Students that participate in small groups will be expected to abide by the ACES Counseling Group Rules:
1. What Happens in Group, Stays in Group (unless there is danger). Students are allowed to tell others what they learn & how they feel, but are not allowed to talk about what other students say. This helps students feel safe talking about their feelings in a group setting. Students and parents need to understand that if a student is in danger, I am required BY LAW to report to Child Protective Services and the appropriate Law Enforcement Agencies.
2. Be Respectful of All Group Members. It’s important that students respect others through their words and actions in order to create a caring environment. It is important that everyone gets a turn to speak if they want to, and while some else is speaking, they get the full attention of all the group members.
3. Always Try Your Best. Participate! Students should commit to reaching goals set in group.
*Mrs. Harrison will ask the student for permission prior to calling parents. Students appreciate knowing that I will discuss with them the reason for calling their parents in order to better assist them. Parents are encouraged to contact me if they have concerns or would like additional information about their child’s progress.
Each small group will run for approximately 6-8 weeks. The groups will be held weekly for 30-40 minutes during the school day. Groups will be formed based on the needs of students, parents, and staff. Groups typically have four to six students participating at one time. If I do not have enough children for a particular group, the group will either be postponed or will not be offered. However, if you feel your child needs to meet with me, I can do so on an individual basis.
As the counselor of Amelia County Elementary School, I provide students with a safe environment in which to practice their skills, explore their ideas, feelings, attitudes and hopes. School counseling groups do not replace outside counseling services. As the school counselor, I offer support, not therapy. However, if you feel your child would benefit from therapy, please call me if you need help locating outside agencies.
If you are interested in having your child participate in a small group, please fill out the “Student Information & Parent/Guardian Permission” Form (found below) and return it to your child’s teacher or to me. You know your child best, so any information you can give me will help me to better meet the needs of your child. Please feel free to call me at 561-2433 if you have any questions or suggestions for other types of small groups.
Student Information & Parent/Guardian Permission Form
Counseling Groups Offered
at Amelia County Elementary School
Banana Splits: This group is for students whose family structure is in a state of change due to separation, divorce, or remarriage. Students will gain support from other students dealing with the same issues, and learn how to mange the “roller coaster ride” of feelings they may have due to the change.
“I CAN” (Control Anger Now): Everyone gets angry. It’s how you respond to your feelings that make the difference. Students will learn to recognize their feelings, what may trigger their anger and how to feel angry less often and less intensely. Students will learn how to deal with their anger in ways that lead to solutions, rather than creating problems.
Memory Makers: This group is for students who have experienced the death and/or serious illness of a loved one within the past few years and whose grief may be interfering with his or her life. Participants work on a memory book to take home at the end of the group.
Circle of Friends: This group is geared towards students who may have concerns/issues about making and keeping friends. Students will learn to appreciate what they have to offer friends and be supported while learning skills necessary for getting to know others in a positive way
Its’ Great to Be Me!: This group offers students the opportunity to acknowledge strengths & positive qualities, to learn to manage negative thinking and to build on positive characteristics. Students struggling with low self-esteem will learn skills to deal with life when things don’t go “right”. Students will be given opportunities to discover their individual talents and strengths and to share ways in which they are special.
ACES A’s: This group is for students that need additional skills for classroom learning. Being successful in school and building a solid academic foundation is important to future success. Based on the specific needs of the group, skill-building activities will be taught and practiced. These skills may consist of listening, focusing, being organized, time management, studying, test taking and maintaining a positive attitude, all which are essential skills for school success!
Special Siblings: This group is for students with siblings that have special needs, such as Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, cancer etc. Students will support each other as they deal with their day-to-day lives living with a sibling that requires extra attention from parents and outside resources. Students will celebrate their siblings’ differences & better understand that everyone is special in their own way.