Counseling sessions are a mixture of assignment-based check-ins and guided reflection.
Assignments aim to sharpen skills related to topics like learning, writing, studying, time management, and goal-setting.
Guided reflection allows students to reconsider perspectives and adjust actions. Students who reflect with me anticipate answers to college essays like the Personal Statement. Here are some real conversation starters that my students have brought into our meetings:
"I love playing the saxophone but I don't think I'm an artist."
"I'm a history major, so I don't really need to take a science course next year, right?"
"I want to be a nurse because there's a nurse shortage and I want the security."
"It's not polite to discuss politics."
"The most significant struggle in my life right now is my tendency to procrastinate."
"I finished the twenty hours of community service and it feels so great to be done."
• Setting long-term and short-term goals
• Checking in about grades and assignments
• Managing time to get everything done
• Identifying priorities and putting them first
• Setting and adhering to deadlines
• Utilizing strategies for study and retention
• Identifying and overcoming roadblocks to success
• Managing distractions and overload
• Maintaining accountability and support systems
• Summer planning (preview, reading list, etc)
• Coordinating outside academic support when necessary
• Personal academic tutoring when appropriate
• Other individualized support as needed
• Course selection in school
• Identifying academic opportunities outside of school
• Planning your unique college strategy
• Choosing a major (and doing something with it)
• Conducting major-related investigations
• Selecting activities, volunteering, etc
• Applying for special programs (e.g. research)
• Standardized test planning + strategies
• Preliminary college research
• Learning about special programs and tracks
• Thinking about possible careers
• Adjusting the plan when needed
• Communicating clearly/effectively when speaking
• Developing English writing skills in a variety of modes
• Resume-writing and revising
• Creating reading lists and maintaining a reading habit
• Practicing the six habits for effective reading of texts
• Independent project planning
• Interview training
• Making budgets and working within your means
• Using mindful techniques for concentration and calm
• Managing stress without sacrificing priorities
• Practicing self-care to present your best self
• Having responsive discussions out of relevant circumstances
• Taking a pause as an opportunity for growth
• Reflecting on setbacks and planning next attempts
• Choosing mentors and role models
• Nurturing creativity and self-expression
• Describing diversity and what makes a person unique
• Contributing to one's local and global communities
• Identifying values and letting them guide choices
• Tapping into empathy to inform difficult decisions
• Defusing conflict and mediating disputes
• Defining leadership and taking action
• Cementing self-worth and self-image
• Thinking about thinking about learning (metacognition)