Have you thought about doing a Open House for teachers at your school? Last year my counseling partner and I started a new tradition that we’ll definitely be continuing this year. It’s actually brilliantly simple and I hope you can take some of these attachments and duplicate this type of activity at your school.
Here are some questions you might have:
When should I have an Open House?
Open House is a time to introduce yourself and your program to the staff, so it makes sense to have this sometime in the first couple weeks of school.
Where is this taking place?
Open House at my school takes place in our small group room (yes, we are lucky to have a sizable room for groups). This is during the school day during their planning time. It is a drop-in atmosphere. A little Enya playing. Some yummy snacks, drinks, seating available. (And some teachers come, and some don’t which is fine).
What is the purpose of teachers coming to an Open House?
Having an Open House allows you to meet with teachers who really come by for the food (let’s be real), but come away with a better understanding of what the role of the counselor is and they have an opportunity to ask questions about any students or processes they might want to discuss. They also can fill out some forms (needs assessments and lesson time requests) and get that out of the way.
Why is this good for you as a counselor to do?
Face-to-face time with teachers in the first weeks of school is crucial and hard to come by. They are learning who their students are and getting procedures started in their class. This Open House can be a chillax type of way to remind them that 1) You are here for them 2) You can get some paperwork that you need done quickly 3) feeding staff is always a good idea.
Helpful attachments and forms/paperwork can be given out at Open House to the teachers?
Flyer to email or post to teachers publicizing your Open House. Counselors’ Open House Flyer
A needs assessment. There are so many. All schools have different needs, but just to give you some examples here is the one we used last year. There are also many that I have found on the Elementary Counselors Exchange page on Facebook. If you haven’t checked it out, you should (Currently there ar 6,800 of us collaborating and sharing ideas).15-16 Needs Assessment
A brochure. This is a great thing to give teachers prior to the school-wide open house. See an example here School Counseling Brochure