Publications

Research about how the physical environment affects young women’s entry and persistence in computing indicates that “The décor of physical spaces conveys messages about the kinds of people who belong there and the kinds of activities that should be done there. Understanding this influence allows us to actively craft an environment that makes a broad range of people feel welcome in computing" (www.ncwit.org/physicalspaceuw).

 

A free and easy way to get started is by printing and displaying CS posters throughout the school. Here is a list of where to go for free downloadable posters: 

Link to CSTA Article

Link to PDF of Article

Achieving #CSforALL means conquering the gender gap in tech. At the 2019 CSforALL Summit in Salt Lake City, Utah, attendees gathered to hear from national experts in gender equity about effective strategies for inviting, engaging and keeping girls and young women in the CS pathway.

A 2019 #CSforALLSummit Session Summary

What were your goals for the new school year? Less time on paperwork and grading? Collect data and assess student growth more efficiently? Stretch your budget with free resources? It’s not too late to make those dreams a reality! There are several free educational technology tools that can help every educator to achieve their goals! Many have paid add-on features, but the free version is sufficient to explore and meet your goals.

Also featured in Multibriefs.

School counselors are facing an increasing number of responsibilities, and technology can help streamline your practice to fulfill your professional responsibilities more efficiently and effectively. If you are looking to connect with other counselors, get innovative and creative counseling ideas, or simply looking to make your job a little easier, look no further! Below are some tech tools many counselors are using today and a sneak peek into what’s on the horizon for school counselors from tech and education insiders.

Online

PDF

"I was driven to use technology to create a positive change in my community. This served as my motivation to establish my high school’s first Girls Who Code club (and one of the first GWC chapters in Virginia) in order to take action to close the gender gap in CS....Along the way, I was introduced to an incredible non-profit organization, the National Center for Women & Information Technology (NCWIT). I was amazed to find an organization comprised of females (and their male allies) across the U.S. who are passionate in all things STEM — just like me! I was ecstatic when I got the notification that I was chosen as a 2018 NCWIT Aspirations in Computing Virginia Affiliate Award Winner!"
http://bit.ly/SaminaJourneyCSTA

Counselors are at the forefront of opening doors to opportunities for all students. School counselors are champions for equity, advocating for a system that supports all students’ in accessing learning opportunities to guide them towards sustainable careers. Preparing ALL students for post-secondary plans requires all educators to recognize and discuss how CS is woven through every career and how we can spark interest in sustainable careers across K–12. Link to Article

Also featured in LINK for Counselors - September 2019

Today’s educators recognize that they are not just teaching a subject; they are teaching life skills to students so they can successfully navigate the academic, career, and social-emotional challenges as they arise. Integrating developmentally appropriate mental health and wellness strategies into all content area subjects is increasingly as commonplace as integrating study skills strategies.

Also published in MultiBrief.

In the past, the title "guidance counselor" was used to describe counselors working in a school. Their role was primarily focused on "guiding" students to post-secondary education and scheduling. Their days were filled with tasks like sending out transcripts, writing letters of recommendation, etc.

The title "school counselor" today recognizes that counselors address the needs of the whole student. They are proactive, data-informed leaders in the school community. Watch this video to learn more about the difference in roles.

School Counselors are at the forefront of opening doors to assist all students in pursuing the careers of their choice. Counselors connect students’ interests with vital 21st -century skills, as evidenced in data shared by the World Economic Forum (https://www.weforum.org/). Computer Science skills are increasingly necessary for our everyday lives, like for community improvement, creative innovations in all fields, and accessibility.

"While school counselors may believe that the inclusive of technology into their program will distract from the soft skills generally associated with the profession, the following anecdotes from counselors at different levels demonstrate how technology can enhance your program."

In this country, we tell our children, “If you can dream it, you can be it.” But that is simply not true if we are not providing gender-inclusive lessons and role models for our children to see themselves in every career... School counselors play a critical role in promoting positive role models and inclusive language around careers.

Did you know that school counselors across the nation are quickly becoming influential advocates for using virtual reality in education? School counselors are in the unique role of implementing virtual reality across the K-12 spectrum to address a variety of distinct needs. They support students as they enter the school, when selecting courses, and helping them to find post-secondary success. School counselors are discovering that a full spectrum of student needs can be met with the support of virtual reality apps.

Read the Spring 2018 issue of Counselor Link to Learn more! 

"Nearpod is truly one of the best presentation tools available today. It has transformed my lessons, streamlined data collection, and helped me connect with ALL of my students. Nearpod is at the heart of what we care about as school counselors. We all want to have engaging, effective lessons and meaningful connections with students. And, as school counselors, we need to collect data to ensure we are meeting our goals. Nearpod supports all of this in a simple, integrated platform that makes my job easier and my lessons more effective and fun!"

Did you know some of your greatest allies in advocating for computer science (CS) might work right alongside you every day? CS educators across the nation are finding that collaborating with their school counselors yields positive results in directing students to viable education and career opportunities. Counselors care about equity and social justice, and are motivated to guide students to studies that prepare them for quality jobs— and many of those jobs are in the computing fields. Here are a few key strategies for creating a positive partnership with your counselors for CS advocacy in your school.

     Everything that school counselors need to know, they learned in graduate school. Right? Well, sort of. While school counseling programs thoroughly prepare graduates, as with any degree, there is some on-the-job learning that isn't always covered in school. In my nearly 15 years of experience as a school counselor, I've identified three surprising skills that I use regularly and hadn't realized would be so important when I was in graduate school. (3/2016)

     For educators, identifying and meeting the needs of students who avoid school is confusing and challenging, and there is no formula that works in all situations. Educators struggle to find the right balance between encouraging students to attend and stay in class while allowing them the comfort of knowing they can leave if feeling overwhelmed. We know that the longer the student is out of school or class, the harder it is to return. The student faces questions from well-intentioned peers. Learning experiences are missed, and the assignments pile up. A cycle of stress, anxiety, and frustration mounts.  Pg. 26  (4/2016)

Cybersecurity and digital citizenship aren't just something we relegate to once-a-year conversations, whether we are talking with adults or children. Understanding how to stay safe, secure, and responsible online are shared goals for everyone of every age. Our digital footprints are long-lasting. Identify theft can have lifelong consequences. As educators and students, the tech-savvy and the tech-novices, we must never assume we know it all. 

School counselors are in the unique position to affect change within their buildings, school districts and community. The direct involvement of school counselors with students and their families, not only for school activities but for neighborhood events, builds trust and enforces stronger bonds for a continuous home–school connection. Here are five ways New Jersey school counselors can engage stakeholders in the community.

Several of my sixth grade students were having conflicts at recess while playing Four Square, a popular playground game among preteens. Arguments often broke out about the rules, roles, turn-taking, and other aspects of the game. They tried to agree on rules each day at recess, but spent so much time each day arguing over what those rules should be that there was no time to play. My students created their own Four Square Constitution to resolve conflicts.

Read more about their process!  (3/2017)

Recently on #SatChat, ReigningIt co-founders Angela Cleveland and Saqi Mehta  guest co-moderated a discussion about engaging students, especially girls, in tech. ReigningIt’s story-sharing platform offers a unique opportunity to identify challenges, celebrate accomplishments, and rally together to make the path to STEM more accessible for the next generation.  (2/2017)

     While some school counselors may believe that the inclusion of technology in their program will distract from the soft skills generally associated with the profession, these anecdotes from different levels demonstrate how technology can enhance your program. Pg. 6 (1/2017)

     School counselors are facing an increasing number of responsibilities, and technology can help streamline your practice to fulfill your professional responsibilities more efficiently and effectively. If you are looking to connect with other counselors, get innovative and creative counseling ideas, or simply looking to make your job a little easier, look no further! Pg. 12 (1/2017)

"As students’ folding fingers transform paper, the shapes and the shaping work some therapeutic magic." Pg. 16 (3/2015)

     “You can wipe away the tears but not the posts.”  “Stone Age to Media Age: moms and pops drowning in an ocean of apps.”  “It’s all about keeping your eyes open to the benefits and risks of social media.”  These are just a few of the insightful headlines that families wrote to summarize what they learned at “Digital Dialogues: A Parent’s Guide to Social Media,” an event held in our district."  Pg. 30  (11/2015)

     "Brand on brand on brand. It’s definitely THE buzzword used by companies, celebrities, athletes, and now it’s your turn."  co-written for Way Up (5/2015)

     "What comes to mind when you picture a classroom? Desks in rows? A teacher at the front of the room? If so, you might be surprised to discover that learning has shifted from a static, one-dimensional model to a more dynamic, openly collaborative setting." Co-written Guest Blog Post for #SatChat co-founder Brad Currie (5/2015)

     "When I decided to take this leap toward integrating technology into my counseling setting, I found many supportive colleagues and administrators. They encouraged me to try new things and helped me to find the humor in situations when something I tried just didn’t work the way I envisioned." Pg. 14 (10/2014, 1/2015) 

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