I can tell by the cooler air in the evenings and by the increased buzz in the neighbourhood that summer is drawing to a close and fall is on its way. Fall and the start of a new school year. I’ve said before that September often feels like the “real” New Year, prompting goal setting and taking on new ventures.
One of my goals arises from my use of Pinterest. How’s that you say? Pinterest is helping you set goals?
Yes, it is. You see, in my role as a school counsellor this past year my explorations on Pinterest were incredibly helpful. I found lesson plans, posters, creative ideas for working with students on a variety of issues, articles and blog posts, book lists and reviews, printable forms, templates and so much more.
It was a rich resource that I turned to over and over again. Often the ideas were jumping off points for me. For example, I needed a way to introduce myself and my role to our grade six classes. I found suggestions that helped me tailor a fun presentation that the students remembered throughout the year. It also made it easier for them to come and talk to me.
Perhaps my favourite use of Pinterest this past year was around Child and Youth Mental Health Day. The theme was “I care about you”. I shared ideas I found on Pinterest with the whole school. It doesn’t take much to spark creativity. Between a positive-tree, posters, messages in chalk, kindness nominations and caring notes hidden around the school it was a great few weeks leading up to the event.
Most importantly, I connected with some of the counsellors whose work I followed online and in so doing built a community of practice that spans the globe.
So what is my goal this year? I will be much more creative and proactive in my approach this year as a school counsellor. I have ideas about how to introduce myself to the whole school (one class at a time) and I am planning to have fun doing it. I am connected to a broader community and I intend to make even better use of it this year, sharing my experiences and ideas as well as learning from others.
If you haven’t explored Pinterest for yourself you may want to give it a go. There is so much more than recipes and crafts.
Dawn M. Schell, MA, CCC, CCDP is an affiliate counsellor with Worldwide Therapy Online Inc. http://therapyonline.ca
*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA