As school counselors we assist students in developing basic life skills, such as how to interact appropriately with peers. Our school district has adopted Dr. Kenneth Ginsburg's Building Resilience Model which focuses on the 7 C's: Competence, Confidence, Connection, Character, Contribution, Coping, and Control. Students will receive instruction in the first two C's: Competence and Confidence in the 6th and 7th grades. The other C's are taught in subsequent grades.
Resilience is the capacity to rise above difficult circumstances, the trait that allows us to exist in this less-than-perfect world while moving forward with optimism and confidence even in the midst of adversity. The following 7 C's are essential traits to obtain and have when building resiliency:
This is the ability or know-how to handle situations effectively. It is not a vague feeling or hunch that "I can do this." Competence is acquired through actual skills, which allow a person to trust their judgments, make responsible choices, and face difficult situations
True confidence, the solid belief in one's own abilities, is rooted in competence. Children gain confidence by demonstrating their competence in real situations. Confidence is not a warm-and-fuzzy self-esteem that supposedly results from just telling kids they're special. Children who experience their own competence and know they are safe and protected develop a deep-seated security that promotes the confidence to face and cope with challenges.
Children with close ties to family, friends, school, and community are more likely to have a solid sense of security that produces strong values and prevents them from seeking destructive alternatives. Family is the central force in any child's life, but connections to civic, educational, religious, and athletic groups can also increase a young person's sense of belonging to a wider world and being safe within it.
Children need a fundamental sense of right and wrong to ensure they are prepared to make wise choices, contribute to the world, and become stable adults. Children with character enjoy a strong sense of self-worth and confidence. They are more comfortable sticking to their own values and demonstrating a caring attitude towards others.
It is a powerful lesson when children realize that the world is a better place because they are in it. Children who understand the importance of personal contribution gain a sense of purpose that can motivate them. They will not only take actions and make choices that improve the world, but they will also enhance their own competence, character, and sense of connection.
Children who learn to cope effectively with stress are better prepared to overcome life's challenges. The best protection against unsafe, worrisome behaviors may be a wide repertoire of positive, adaptive coping strategies.
When children realize that they can control the outcomes of their decisions and actions, they are more likely to know that they have the ability to do what it takes to bounce back. On the other hand, if we as adults make all the decisions, children are denied opportunities to learn control. A child who sees control as external - feels that whatever they do really doesn't matter because they have no control of the outcome. But a resilient child knows that they have internal control. By choices and actions, they will determine the results. They know that they can make a difference which further promotes competence and confidence.
The Resiliency curriculum is in harmony with the Utah Comprehensive Counseling and Guidance Program Student Outcomes. The Student Outcome Standards the Resiliency training addresses includes, but is not limited to the following:
AL.A1.1 Articulate feelings for competence and confidence as learners
AL.A1.3 Understand individual strengths and how to remediate or compensate for weaknesses
AL.A2.2 Demonstrate how effort and persistence positively affect learning
LC.A1.2 Develop a positive attitude toward work and learning by understanding the importance of responsibility, dependability, integrity and work ethic.
LC. A2.1 Learn to understand and respect individual uniqueness in the workplace
LC.A2.6 Understand how life roles influence career choices
MG:A1.1 Recognize, appreciate and respect individual differences, alternative points of view, ethnicity, culture, race, religion, and lifestyle
MG:A1.2 Understand and respect our own culture and cultures of others
MG:A1.3 Recognize that everyone has human rights and responsibilities
MG:A1.4 Improve the ability to express an opinion on issues while listening to and respecting the views of others
MG:A2.1 Develop the ability to be sensitive to and defend human rights
MG:A2.3 Develop a commitment to the principles of justice, caring, fairness, responsibility, and compassion
MG:A3.2 Acquire the ability to resolve conflicts peacefully while cooperating and collaborating in a school and community setting
MG:A3.4 Participate in the community for personal growth and to promote public good
PS:A1.1 Develop positive attitudes toward self
PS:A1.5 Identify and express feelings, attitudes, and beliefs
PS:A1.6 Understand the nature of growth and development
PS:A1.7 Understand and practice self-control
PS:A1.8 Identify changing life roles within the family and society
PS:A2.2 Develop healthy relationships that include trust, respect, and caring
PS:A2.3 Understand the need to belong and be accepted by others
PS:A2.4 Develop an awareness of the mutual benefits of sharing, cooperation, and compromise
PS:B2.4 Know how and when to access resources to assist in making decisions
PS:B2.6 Understand the consequences of decisions and choices
PS:B3.1 Identify the real problem
PS:B3.2 Explore alternative solutions
PS:B3.3 Identify and use appropriate resources
PS:B3.4 Evaluate consequences of each solution
PS:C1.3 Differentiate between situations requiring peer support and those requiring adult or professional help
PS:C1.5 Understand the dangers and consequences of substance abuse
PS:C2.1 Recognize personal boundaries, rights, and privacy needs
PS:C2.2 Differentiate between appropriate and inappropriate physical, emotional, and verbal interaction
PS:C2.3 Recognize and generate assertive responses to peer pressure
PS:C2.4 Differentiate between situations requiring peer support and those requiring adult or professional help
PS:C2.5 Develop skills for managing life events; balance personal issues with school success
PS:C2.6 Learn and apply stress management techniques