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Prevent and Address Cyberbullying Behaviors
Bullying behavior among kids from elementary, middle and high school has expanded beyond what parents and teachers may have experienced in their youth. Teasing and name calling have grown into full-fledged attacks spread wide by the use of the Internet, a form of abuse commonly known as cyberbullying.


Careers: Building Your Child's Future Together
When planning a career with your child, consider the following:
  • Work situations and skills needed for employment are constantly changing.
  • Almost half of the working population expects to change jobs in the next three years.
  •  Retraining and upgrading skills will be a requirement for maintaining employment.
  • Two-thirds of the jobs created today will require education beyond high school.
  • The worker of tomorrow must be able to work as a team member, communicate, solve problems, use technologies, adapt to change and be drug-free.
  • Career development is a lifelong process.


Positive Parenting Tips for Summer
For 180 days a year, school counselors work with students on how to express their feelings in appropriate ways, how to deal with their anger and how to cope with stressful situations. But what happens when school is not in session, especially during the extended summer break? As a parent, you are the most influential person in your children's lives, and how you work through family issues can have a positive influence on behavior throughout the family as well as the school. Following are some parenting tips to work on throughout the summer months.


Social Networking: Blessing or Curse?
I cannot begin to imagine where technology will be in the next five or 10 years. To say that technology has changed our culture and way of life is probably the understatement of the century. Some of the communication devises we watched on “Star Trek” in the ’60s are part of our everyday life today. Our world has become even smaller because of the Internet. Family photos and videos are sent through thin air from all over world in a matter of seconds. So what is next? Where will we be? How will we live? And, most importantly, how can we make sure our children are benefiting from technology rather than suffering because of technology.


The Transition to Middle School: Tips for Parents
Students entering middle school are experiencing a tremendous amount of change. Just a few months ago, they had only one or two teachers. Now they may have seven or eight. Their bodies are growing and developing every day. Added to the equation are the hormones and emotions that accompany the physical changes. This all can create the perfect storm for unrest at home and at school. Although they are beginning to look like adults, middle school students still need parental and adult guidance and assistance. Here are a few tips for parents and caregivers as they navigate the middle school years.


Connecting With Your Child's School Counselor for a Successful School Year
It’s that time of year again – back to school. As students across the country enter the school halls with fresh notebooks, clean backpacks and a new attitude to do their best, it’s time for parents to think about their back-to-school roles as well. One way to ensure your children have a successful school year is to make a connection with their school counseling department.


Crisis in the Schools
Children need safe environments if they are to thrive. When that safety is disrupted, for whatever reason, adults need to reassure children that they will be protected. Crises can range from school-related incidents to incidents in the community, such as natural disasters, or the world at large, such as terrorism or war.


Understanding the School Counselor/Parent Connection
All students can learn. A student who is troubled, however, cannot learn as easily. School counselors can help. Divorce, substance abuse, child abuse, poverty, violence and suicidal thoughts are among the social stressors placing numerous students at-risk of educational failure and dropping out of school. Early intervention is essential, and parents and guardians play a vital role. A guidance program that provides direct services and is directed by a professionally trained school counselor is a critical component of a school’s prevention efforts in the 21st century.


Building Tomorrow's Leaders
When we think of leaders, people such as Mahatma Gandhi, Winston Churchill, Colin Powell and Abraham Lincoln often come to mind. These leaders, while all vastly different people, shared qualities such as empathy, trustworthiness, fairness, cooperation, a sense of responsibility, citizenship and valuing the significant contributions of each person. Obviously not everyone is cut out to be a leader, but if you teach your children to lead and give them opportunities to lead others, the results can be amazing.


Helping Children Cope with Natural Disasters
Natural disasters like hurricanes, floods, and tornadoes can cause fear, anxiety, and even depression among children. Sometime impacts aren't felt for weeks, months, or even longer. School counselors, trained in providing immediate and long-term support to students in coping with disasters, stress to parents the importance of creating a feeling of safety for their children.


Letting Kids be Kids
We all know them, don't we? "Those" parents -- the ones no one wants to sit with in the bleachers because they're so irritating. Recognize any of these folks?


Turning College and Career Planning into Family Communication
Once upon a time we knew a boy who wanted to become a part-time professional baseball player, part-time professional football player, part-time private businessman and part-time Captain America. We also knew a girl who wanted, despite artistic and literary talents, to become the governor of Montana. We knew these children well because they were us.


The Challenges of Differences
Being different can be enormously hard. The tendency to torment students who are different is puzzling when we realize that being different is natural. Just as there are no absolutely identical snowflakes or blades of grass, there are no absolutely identical human beings. Even monozygotic twins are slightly different than each other. Humans vary widely in terms of shape, size and skin/hair/eye color. We also vary in gifts, strengths, personalities and abilities.


Hope for Special-Needs Students and Their Parents
As the disasters of hurricanes Katrina and Rita have shown us all too well, we can't always count on the community or the government to act in the best interests of those unable to advocate and care for themselves. The political will to provide adequate and equal care for all citizens, especially citizens with physical or mental disabilities, waxes and wanes in our culture; we can never rest assured that those with special needs will have their needs met.


This is Not Your Grandparents' School Counselor
School counseling just isn't what it used to be. Over the past several years, we've asked college students and adults, ranging in age from 20 to 65 about their experiences with school counselors. The main question asked was: "What do you remember about your school counselors in elementary school, middle school or high school?" Here's a smattering of what we've heard:


Calling All Parents
Thanks partly to the lingering effects of “Leave it to Beaver” and “Father Knows Best,” most of us still carry around a sort of fictional ideal family that includes:


School-Parent Collaboration: A Labor of Love
Just take a deep breath. Relax. That’s it. Notice the warmth of your skin. Feel the sense of calm and peacefulness growing inside your mind. You are now relaxed, calm and ready to face new challenges. This little article is about such a challenge: collaborating with the school with the goal of improving your child’s educational experiences and achievements.


Building Your Child's Character: Challenges and Solutions
We live in a time when teaching our children to be virtuous is especially challenging. Youngsters are surrounded by political sound-bites; outlandish promises from advertisers; and television programming and films filled with lying, gratuitous violence and sex as entertainment. As a parent, you might feel weary and overwhelmed as you try to help your children develop virtues such as honesty, respect for themselves and others, humility, courage and a generous rather than greedy heart. You're not alone. The challenge of helping humans develop high moral character has perplexed philosophers, psychologists and theologians for centuries.


The Buzz on Bullying
If you grew up and are functioning in American society, you can probably provide your own definition of bullying and have had some level of personal experience with it. Bullying is an all-too-common human activity that has existed since the beginning of recorded history and is present in most cultures. It is enacted by both boys and girls, as well as women and men. Research suggests that somewhere between 30 percent and 60 percent of American schoolchildren report being bullied.


Recipes and Equations for Career Satisfaction
Sometimes parents start worrying about their children’s career options before their children’s birth. After they’ve arrived, and as they grow, the drumbeat of concern may intensify, “My daughter is so bossy and argumentative, how will she ever survive in the real world where she actually has to work peacefully with other humans?” or “My son isn’t very good at school. I’m afraid he’ll end up stuck in a low-paying job, never earning a decent income.” To deal with these worries, it helps to understand what leads to career satisfaction and how to help your children with career planning.


Appropriate Use of the Internet
Trying to find helpful information regarding appropriate use of the Internet by children can be a challenge for parents and educators. One helpful site is NetSmartz, which was created by a partnership of the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and the Boys and Girls Clubs of America. The following information is from the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children.