Newsletter – September 2021

September 2021 School Counselor Newsletter

Dear St. John Families,

Welcome back to school! I hope you had a happy and restful summer. I am so excited to be back at St. John for my third year! I am even more excited that we get to have all of our students back on campus for our regular full days this year! Please read on to learn about the ways I’ll be working with students this year:

      • SEL Groups (K-5th Grade): Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) groups are a key way I support students who need some extra help with a social or emotional skill (e.g., emotional regulation, anxiety, coping skills, friendship, etc.) Groups are formed with 3-5 same-grade peers and meet for 30 minutes a week during the school day for 6-8 consecutive weeks. My first round of groups will begin in October, so look out for more information regarding sign-ups in my October Counselor Newsletter!
      • SEL Class (Middle School): New this year, I will be teaching a class called “SEL” (Social-Emotional Learning) in middle school! Lessons will take place once a week for one trimester per grade level. I will begin with 8th grade in the fall, work with 7th grade in the winter, and close out the year with 6th grade in the spring. In our lessons, we will explore emotions, coping skills, and how to nurture healthy relationships, among other topics. I’m so excited to add this additional layer of support to our middle school students. SEL Class will use the Second Step curriculum from Committee for Children.
      • 1-on-1 Counseling (All students): I’m available to work with students as requested on a goal-oriented, short-term basis. Please email me to arrange this service.

If I can do anything at all to support you or your child as we start the new school year, please feel free to contact me at I would be so happy to help you in whatever way I can.

Let’s make it a great year!

Ms. Shaw

September Resources

  • Looking for some tips for a smooth transition to the school year amid COVID? Sound Discipline has 8 great tips for families! From savoring the final days of summer to setting new agreements and routines, these are some wonderful strategies to help your child and family ease into the year.
  • It’s completely normal to have some back to school jitters—especially amid a pandemic. If your child is expressing some worries about returning to school, consider using this “When I Feel Worried About School” worksheet. It has great ideas to help children think of things they can do to feel more comfortable during this transition.
  • Want to hear more about how your child’s day went than just “fine”? Try asking specific and open-ended questions (i.e., not a question that only has a yes/no answer)! Take a look at this list of 30 Questions to Ask Your Kid Instead of “How Was Your Day?” for some ideas—they really do help!
  • The Center for Child & Family Well-Being at UW is offering an 8-week online course for teens 14-18 entitled, “Tools for Teens: Stress Management & Emotional Resilience”. This looks like an excellent opportunity for 8th graders looking for tools to support their mental health and well-being.