Thursday, February 18, 2010

S.E.A.L.S. Group

One of my small guidance groups in 5th grade guidance focuses on helping students at school with low motivation. To create an intervention for students who have trouble staying motivated to complete homework or to do their best in school, I started the S.E.A.L.S. (Self Esteem and Life Skills) group. In the SEALS group, we are using activities from the S.E.A.L.S. + Plus by Korb-Khalsa, Azok, and Leutenberg.

In the SEALS book, our group has been working on the activities that focus on Goal Setting. Today we are working on conquering the "Sofa Spud Syndrome" - letting homework, reports, deadlines, and household chores pile up by spending too much time with the t.v., video games, or even just sitting on the couch staring into space! Our district is focusing on vocabulary instruction this year, so we will also learn about what the word "lethargy" means.

After learning about the "Sofa Spud Syndrome", the group members will focus on making one short term goal - one they can achieve before the next meeting. We will celebrate at our next group meeting any progress made towards these goal - big or small! My goal as the counselor this week is to get the students to take at least one step in the right direction.

Dr. Charles Fay of the Love and Logic Institute has some tips for parents who battle with their children over homework. To help children at home get their work done, instead of begging, pleading, bribing and lecturing, he suggests the following:
  • Set aside a time and place for your child to learn
  • Tell you child that they can either do their work or learn by thinking about it
  • Say that you will help them only as long as you don't start arguing
  • Tell your child that you will help only as long as they work harder than you do
  • Allowing your child to take total responsibility for their homework
Most importantly, Dr. Fay emphasizes that parents transfer their energy used fighting with their child into making sure the child is respectful, does their chores, and know that they are loved regardless of the grades they earn. If you are interested in more information, you can sign up for Dr. Fay's weekly Love and Logic emails on the Love and Logic Institute website.

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