25 Ways Of Making The Best Of Each Day : Especially For Educators During Covid19

april1

Choose ONE of the following tips. You may want to post it on your mirror at home or pin it to your desktop and remind yourself of what you need during this time.

  1. Just for Today I will acknowledge that we are all grieving the world as we once knew it. I will be compassionate with myself and my students.                                          
  2. Just for Today I will take the necessary actions so that I don’t burn out during Covid 19. I will take breaks and put things on pause when I need to.                                           
  3. Just for Today I will be grateful I am an educator who loves and cares for youth.                  
  4. Just for Today I will remember that relationships are a key factor for academics to occur especially as I move online.                                                                                              
  5. Just for Today I will trust the process . If I don’t get exactly how to use the tech at this time that is more than OK.                                                                                                    
  6. Just for Today I will acknowledge that I need time and space for myself and my family,  I will take time to care for my own well being and theirs.                                              
  7. Just for Today I will share a just for today , a positive quote or thought with my students.                                                                                                                                          
  8. Just for Today I will not speak negatively about myself, treating myself empathically focusing on what I do know, not on what I don’t.                                                                           
  9. Just for Today I will focus on doing my best and let go of the rest, acknowledging that I care about all of my students.                                                                                                
  10. Just for Today I will make sure that I take time to have a proper lunch and take breaks.                                                                                                                                              
  11. Just for Today I will find ways to decrease my workload.                                                     
  12. Just for Today I will connect with a colleague and  collaborate knowing this will lighten some of my load.                                                                                                                       
  13. Just for Today I will focus on my strengths and not fall into the trap of comparing myself to others .
  1. Just for Today I will not put 20 things on my to do list. I will tackle one concern at a time.                                                                                                                                                      
  2. Just for Today I will centre myself while helping students find ways to centre themselves.                                                                                                                                                 
  3. Just for Today I choose the path of being there for a child.                                                             
  4. Just for Today I will acknowledge that I cannot be everything to everyone.                               
  5. Just for Today I will accept support from others.                                                                              
  6. Just for Today I will find a way to celebrate student success.                                               
  7. Just for Today I will film a short message to check in with my students.                              
  8. Just for today I will avoid overthinking by attempting to stay in the moment.                
  9. Just for Today I will remember that it’s okay not to feel okay.                                             
  10. Just for Today I will collaborate with my team to share resources.                                    
  11. Just for Today I will send a message of thanks to a member of my school community.                                                                                                                                      
  12. Just for Today I will turn my computer off at the end of office hours. 

Want to check out previous posts for students. You can find them here.

What is your Just for Today Tip? Please share in the comments. Susan and I would love to hear your ideas.

10 Ways To Kick Start Your Day Just for Today

covid

  1. Just for Today I will think about what makes me happy and snowball ( use paper snowball or a real one if there is any snow) any negative thoughts away.  Barb Brown
  2. Just for Today I will visit my old neighbourhood and call an old friend. Graham Kennedy
  3. Just for Today I will acknowledge that I am worthy and loved . Louise Hamilton
  4. Just for Today I will  learn a new skill and tomorrow a new life skill.  Kim Souillet
  5. Just for Today when I brush my  teeth I will pretend that I am a zookeeper brushing a hippos teeth.  Carol Stevenson
  6. Just for Today I will read my favourite book.  Kate Kucharski
  7. Just for Today I will smile and wave at every person who passes by my house.  Susan Viveiros
  8. Just for Today I will tell my teacher about the things I do well and help them understand what makes me feel happy and safe. Verena Roberts
  9. Just for Today I will reflect on where I  have been, where I have gone, and the road I have built upon, I will take a step forward into the unknown world with familiar faces … holding hands would be nice too Kristen Copes
  10. Just for Today I will call, text or video chat a peer who needs encouragement.  Cynthia Nunnally Morton

Yesterday we published 101 Ways to Kickstart Your Day In A Positive Way : A Guide for Educators Parents and Students. Susan and I love the response we are getting. Thanks George Couros for inspiring the post and for sharing our thoughts. We were hoping that educators would use them and they are already doing just that. Here is one from a school in Missouri

kind

We would love it if you would continue sharing and using. If you have a Just for Today thought please share it with us.

Just for Today we hope your day is filled with wonderful people who bring you love and joy.

100 Ways To Kick Start Your Day In A Positive Way: A Guide For Educators Parents and Student

today

 This is a collaborative blogpost by Susan Spellman Cann and I along with a few ideas from friends.  As mental health educators we believe that a focus on our mental health and well being is foundational to all education. It is impossible to focus on academics if students are not feeling secure. We believe it’s important to intentionally embed a focus on well being into every lesson with young people. All of us need to use positive self talk and coping strategies to feel better . We can all do one thing a day that will help us cope during this unprecedented time.

 

Hoping some of these tips help you start the day as an educator. You can post a tip for the day using Canva or just text your student the tip to start their day. As an educator I am sure you can find many creative ways to use this as you move online. 

 

  1. Just for today I will start and end my day in a positive way.
  2. Just for today I will remember that I am ok and all will be well with the world.
  3. Just for today I will be proud that I stayed home and did my part to help.
  4. Just for today I will be grateful for all the front line workers that are helping us.
  5. Just for today I will celebrate our shared humanity.
  6. Just for today I will head outside and let the sun hit my face. I will take some fresh air breaths and listen, it may sound quieter and more peaceful than usual. I will think about what I hear, how the sun feels on my face and how those deep breaths make my body feel? Susan Fueller
  7. Just for today I will send some positive intentions out into the universe. 
  8. Just for today I will think of ways to make the world a better place.
  9. Just for today I will learn to say I love you in as many languages as I can think of. 
  10.  Just for today I will post a positive message in my window and or use sidewalk chalk to write a message for others in my neighbourhood to see.
  11.  Just for today I will connect with two people that lift my spirits.
  12.  Just for today I will write or talk about one thing I am grateful for no matter how small. Helen MacKinnon
  13.  Just for today I will remain hopeful.
  14.  Just for today I will look back at old photo albums and tell stories from the past which made me who I am today. 
  15.  Just for today I will look in the mirror and recognize that I have a purpose for being here.
  16.  Just for today I will make sure I am moving my body for at least 30 minutes.
  17.  Just for today I will be kind to my mind.
  18.  Just for today I will have an eye staring contest. Juliana Miller – MacPherson
  19.  Just for today I will tell the people that I care about that they matter to me.
  20.  Just for today I will not worry about what is in it for me, I will think only about what I can do to help out in every situation. Gail White
  21.  Just for today I will dress in my favourite colour and eat my favourite food. Laurel Hunt
  22.  Just for today I will listen to one of my favourite songs and sing along. Leena Booth
  23.  Just for today I will say I am courageous, strong and can make a difference.
  24.  Just for today everytime I wash my hands I will tell two silly jokes and laugh. Karen Hudson
  25.  Just for today I will talk about helpful and unhelpful worries with an adult.
  26.  Just for today I know that I am safe and I can control my thoughts.
  27.  Just for today I will wish upon a star.
  28.  Just for today I will remember that challenges can be opportunities.
  29.  Just for today I will go for a walk and notice all the beauty around me.
  30.  Just for today I will remember that all my feelings are ok. It’s ok to be scared etc.
  31.  Just for today I will remind myself that just because I made a mistake doesn’t mean I am one.
  32.  Just for today I will stay strong and well.
  33.  Just for today I will share my favorite song/poem and we can sing or say them together or to each other.  Sheri Edwards
  34.  Just for today I will not give up.
  35.  Just for today I will ask God to get me through today.
  36.  Just for today I will look at one way I can see the opportunities because of the challenges of today. 
  37.  Just for today I will reevaluate my priorities and tell someone what I think.
  38.  Just for today I will let go of any thoughts that don’t help my peace of mind.
  39.  Just for today I will remember not everyone reacts to events in the same way. I will be positive today.
  40.  Just for today I will remember that I am loveable and capable.
  41.  Just for today I will take a break from watching or listening to any alarming news.
  42.  Just for today wear my clothes inside out and walk backwards. ( Laura Cormier) 
  43.  Just for today I will take care of my mind by listening to some soothing music.
  44.  Just for today I will do one activity that I love and enjoy.
  45.   Just for today I will check in with my parents and/ or , grandparents to bring a smile to their day.
  46.  Just for today I will find a calm space just for me. 
  47.  Just for today I will write about my feelings in a journal.
  48.  Just for today I know that I can deal with life’s difficulties.
  49.  Just for today I will smile often.
  50.  Just for today I will say to myself I can cope with this uncertainty.
  51.  Just for today I will draw out my worries.
  52.  Just for today I will talk to an adult about what is concerning me.
  53.  Just for today I will visualize my safe place ( a beach, being with my favourite friend , playing and singing in the rain).
  54.  Just for today I will do more of what makes me happy.
  55.  Just for today I will find two ways to distract myself if I start to catastrophize.
  56.  Just for today I will let go of anything that upsets me.
  57.  Just for today I will reassure myself that all will be well with the world.
  58.  Just for today I will calm my wandering mind by doing something that is fun.
  59.  Just for today I will unwind by taking time out of my day to draw, paint, sing, dance or play a game I love.
  60.  Just for today I will read a book for 15 minutes for pleasure.
  61.  Just for today I will be easy on myself.
  62.  Just for today I will look for solutions.
  63.  Just for today I will talk kindly and gently to myself just like I would my best friend.
  64.  Just for today I will watch a funny movie or talk to a funny friend. I know laughter will help.
  65.  Just for today I will remind myself that I matter.
  66.  Just for today I can  journal for 10 minutes.
  67.  Just for today I will open my heart to new ways of thinking and doing.
  68.  Just for today I will spend some extra time with people I love.
  69.  Just for today use your imagination to imagine the best that can happen.
  70.  Just for today I will remind myself  of one good thing I can do for the world.
  71.  Just for today I will  love with all my heart.
  72.  Just for today I will tell myself that life can be tough sometimes  ,but so am I. 
  73.  Just for today I will say I am strong, I am kind and I can do anything I make up my mind to do.
  74.  Just for today I will recognize that I cannot change the circumstances ,but I can change my reaction to it. 
  75.  Just for today I will practice breathing deeply.
  76.  Just for today I will write 3 things I am grateful for.
  77.  Just for today I will look at some old pictures and think of the positive memories of that time.
  78.  Just for today I will make something new.
  79.  Just for today I will create a song, a piece of art , a new recipe, or something I have always wanted to create.
  80.  Just for today I will take a picture of something that brings me joy.
  81.  Just for today I will lift someone else’s spirits.
  82.  Just for today I will spread some kindness and love in the world.
  83.  Just for today I will make hot chocolate and eat my favourite cookie.
  84.  Just for today I will write a love letter.
  85.  Just for today whenever I find myself thinking negative I will challenge those thoughts.
  86.  Just for today I will reach out to someone who needs it.
  87.  Just for today I will jump for joy.
  88.  Just for today I will start a blog, a vlog or share something that makes the world a better place.
  89.  Just for today I will share at least 2 jokes with others.
  90.  Just for today I will connect with someone from a different generation than I am, to learn more about how they see the world.
  91.  Just for today I will try a new recipe from a different culture.
  92.  Just for today I will learn to make a friendship bracelet.
  93.  Just for today I will collaborate with a friend on a project to make the world a better place.
  94.  Just for today I will make a playlist of songs which inspire me.
  95.  Just for today I will play a board game with my family.
  96.  Just for today I will make a short video. 
  97.  Just for today I will try a zoom chat with friends.
  98.  Just for today I will focus on what I need.
  99.  Just for today I will share something I am passionate about.
  100.  Just for today I will tell my colleagues and friends how much I appreciate all they do. 
  101. Just for today I will reach out to see if I can help someone else in the world.

 

What is your Just for Today ? Please share with us so we can share with educators from around the world.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Deferred Leave- Part of My Self Care Strategy

Being a school counsellor, particularly one for CCSD, has provided me with so many blessings that I never could have anticipated when I stated my career back in 2000.  The following are just a few of the many opportunities I have been grateful for over the years:

  • Chaperoning traveling music and science field trips (an opportunity to get to know your colleagues and students on a totally different level).

Ca

  • Opportunities to develop and run group counselling sessions- watching a team of students bloom while learning about topics such as anxiety and/or healthy relationships.

4

  • Working in an innovative environment, which embraces my use of technology, and encourages me to expand my PLN.

oclmooc_logo

  • Opportunities to sponsor student initiated clubs

Spectrum Club                                                        BCHS Youth Champions

  • The opportunity to live abroad in Tarui Japan (2013-2014)

IMG_2575

 

Though I have truly loved all of these amazing opportunities to interact with students and colleagues in many amazing ways, I believe that the next opportunity that I am about to access through my district will truly help rejuvenate me, refill my cup and prepare me for another 17 years of excitement and joy with my district.

Deferred Leave

Using this program provided by CCSD I have been deducted 16.67% of my salary for the past five (5) years.   These deductions are allowing me to take a leave during the up coming school year. Not only will I continue to be paid 83.35% of my salary, but my position has also been reserved for me within the district for when I return to work in fall 2018.

IMG_1194

I am planning on using my deferred year as an opportunity to connect with those who are truly important in my life. My kids and myself.

A few of my goals for this upcoming year.

  • BECOME A GIRL GUIDE LEADER- my daughter truly loved being a brownie, and I appreciate that she has been able to connect with other positive, empowering female role models. As she moves up into Guides I am excited to join this journey with her.
  • SIT ON THE BOARD FOR EPIC FENCING- my son loves this sport and I want to give back to the community who has provided him with so much.
  • SUPERVISE A PRACTICUM STUDENT- my mentor has chosen to retire this year. I am excited to help a new comer transition into the position that I love so much
  • EXPLORE some Expressive Arts Therapy techniques
  • PREPARE for the 2018 ATACSC conference.
  • PRACTICE MINDFULNESS
  • REFILL my own personal cup.

BCHS Art Trading Cards: Mental Health Awareness Week 2017

IMG_4524

Today marked our the final art therapy based project, sponsored by my Spectrum club’s DEHR grant, for the 2016-2017 school year. For information on past projects please check out the following links:

Heart of A Community: BCHS Students Fill Their Hearts

ART THERAPY: We All Wear a Mask

For this final exercise we decided to try an art trading card technique. Art trading cards, are similar to hockey cards, or pokemon cards. The image on the front represents something about a person. The back of the card provides a name and a few details about the person it represents.

Based on our success with past project, we chose to make this a multimedia task with minimal instruction so that our students had plenty of opportunities for personal reflection.

IMG_4502

Students were then asked to complete 3 cards.

  1. To keep
  2. To trade
  3. A final card to contribute to the BCHS commemorative collage.

*although we allowed complete freedom for the first two cards we asked the students to base their third card on what it means to be a member of the Bishop Carroll community

IMG_4503

With Spotify “tunes for the coffee bar” channel streaming in the background. We provided our students with two hours to work on their projects.

The results were amazing.

We are waiting for the last few cards to come in and then we are planning to mat the cards in a single frame in order to create a legacy piece to remember not only Bishop Carroll’s 45th anniversary, but also the year we were able to collaborate between art and counselling thanks to our amazing DEHR grant.

IMG_4521

Thank you ATA.

Sincerely

Mrs. Luong

Pies Bring Us All Together: Smart Grad 2017

Grad can be an expensive time of year. This year our student grad committee decided to host an event that not only raised funds to help students in need, but also created a positive spirit of community and comradeship within our school community.

1)Each of the teachers, support staff and administrators were given a cup. Over the noon hour the grad committee sold raffle tickets at $1/ ticket. Participants could then select which cup they wanted to add their tickets into.pi12) We purchased one paper plate (safety) and whip cream in order to make the pies.  pi53) Over the lunch hour we invited the school community to participate in this pep rally. Buttons and baking were sold on the way into the gym in order to earn extra funds.

4) Participating teachers were provided with shower caps and plastic bags to cover up. We also made sure to lay plastic out over the floor.

5) Students had a blast checking to see if their name was drawn to “pie” their favorite staff member.

 

6) Once everyone had been pied a few of our staff members agreed to go up for a 2nd helping, with the honor going to the highest bidder.

 

Feedback from the day was extremely positive. We earned $685 to put towards grad fees for students in need.

I would highly recommend this to other school who want to build positive school spirit.

Do you have any other suggestions on spirit building activities and events in your community?

Mrs. L

The BCHS 3rd Annual “WE DON’T SAY ” Campaign

2017 Marks the third year of the BCHS Spectrum clubs annual “WE DON’T SAY” Campaign. For information on our previous campaigns please check out the following links:

Creating a Culture of Caring At Bishop Carroll

We Don’t Say 2.0: Our #Carrollculture of Caring Continues

We proudly launched this year’s anti- slur campaign on March 19th, 2017 during the 4th annual BCHS Mental Health Symposium . A big thanks especially goes out to the Bishop Carroll commuity for coming up with our phrases,  Grade 12 executive Olivia Quinn for leading our project,  Arlene Hufalar from the BCHS Photography club for taking photos for us, Spectrum alumni Sara for designing the posters,  Mr. Audet for printing our posters, Mr. O’ Flaherty for approving our messages and Ms. Luong and Boppre for acting as club sponsors.

Here are the phrases that made it into our campaign this year.

 

What phrases and responses might you have added? Feel free to share this campaign with others, or add comments.

BCHS 4th Annual Mental Health Symposium

On Wednesday April 19th Bishop Carroll’s Mental Wellness Team, Spectrum Club and Jack.org partnered together to put on our school 4th annual Mental Health Symposium.
mentalhealt4

(see 1st, 2nd, 3rd)

Our fabulous, student run event,  involved 100 participants from four different schools in the Calgary area. Participants were encouraged to participate in a number of mental wellness activities including building gratitude baskets, sketching to the fabulous tunes of our very own Kate Stevens, making a button with the Spectrum Club  and being the first to view the launch of the The BCHS 3rd Annual “WE DON’T SAY ” Campaign.

Our students were reminded that everyone experiences “Mental Health”, however at least 1/5 Canadians will experience Mental Illness in their lifetime.

mentalhealth5

One of our morning keynote speakers  was Calgary teen Maggie Harder who was the original initiator of the  Amazon Suicide Shirt Campaign which took place in January 2016. Maggie spoke to our students about the fact that language matters, and it’s important to stand up (in a positive and constructive way) for what you believe is important.

mental health 6