One of the many blessings of the career I have chosen is that I get to kick back and relax and reflect over the summer. As I do that in Nova Scotia a place where I was born and love, I watch the children around me and think about how summer should be , but often is not for all too many children. Summer should be a time to truly be a child, to feel the exhiliration of doing cartwheels on the beach or rolling down your front lawn like I watched a group of young boys do, yes it should be a time to be free. Free from the big concerns of life. Abandoning wordly concerns for periods in time is good for all of us. We as school counsellors need to do this too.
School counsellors can assist children to get back to being a child, finding the fun in the moments. We can remind students that:
- It is OK to laugh even when things don’t seem all that funny
- It is OK to feel free even if they live in chaos, or are dealing with the many stresses that surround them
- It’s OK to let go
- It’s OK to play , be curious and enjoy life
Too often children who live in a home where dysfunction occurs become much too adult like. We can remind them and ourselves that is OK to enjoy the childlike sense of wonder.
Students mental health and wellness is our concern. We have a lot to offer students as they proceed through their developmental stages in life and go on to make important choices about their education and careers.
Coming to my childhood home and reconnecting with friends and family reminds me that how we handle these precious moments in time in students lives can have a lifelong impact. We can and do make a difference, but we also need to take time to kick back ourselves and take time for self-care. Summers often allow us to do just that.
I will #reachigher to increase the graduation rates of students at risk.