Welcome Back! My name is Meg Cunningham and I am so excited about the 2018-2019 school year! I look forward to seeing all the wonderful students, families and staff members again at Westwood. I am so honored to be your school counselor at West G! Please click on the appropriate tabs for my contact information and schedule this year.
As the school counselor, I am available to speak with any student who needs some help or is having any type of social, emotional or educational concern.
I also provide guidance and education in the classroom with the emphasis on students learning important social skills that they will use to improve and further enhance their academic, career and personal/social development. Each grade focuses on different topics and includes developing friendships, expressing feelings and making positive choices, self-esteem, respect for self and others, decision making, problem solving and dealing with bullying.
Throughout the West Geauga School District, we focus on the Three R's: Being RESPECTFUL (use common courtesy, respect others and their ideas, use language and technology appropriately, Being RESPONSIBLE (be an active learner, ask for help, be honest) and Be READY TO LEARN (be on time, prepared for class, ready to participate). Please feel free to discuss other ways students can display the three R's both at school at home as we will be reviewing them throughout the school year!
I always like to summarize my topics for each grade level for classroom guidance for grades K-5. Throughout the year, students will share activities from guidance lessons and may ask for family participation and feedback. Please feel free to contact me anytime if you have any questions!
Following our initial topics of self-esteem, diversity and respect for all others, we have also addressed bullying issues as October was National Bullying Prevention Month. Every year, I address what bullying is, the different types of bullying, what we can do when we are being bullied and what we can do to prevent bullying-with discussions and activities geared toward the appropriate grade and developmental level of our students.
In Kindergarten, our theme is how to make and keep friends-we learn about how special we all are and how special our friends are as well. We will read many wonderful stories including Billy Bully and how he lost his friends but then won them back when he learned how to share and be kind and caring again!
In First Grade, we are learning about our feelings and how they affect our behaviors. Students have learned the importance of sharing our feelings, now just when we are happy and proud, but when we are sad, angry and scared and how we can feel better and turn to others for help.
In Second Grade, our theme is respect for self and others-we discuss what the golden rule means, the importance of manners and respect both at school and home, as well as what can we do when others are not kind or bully others.
In Third Grade, our theme is problem solving and all students give their input of various problem situations we will cover this year regarding problems at school, home, with bullying, friends, academics, etc. Students will also do role plays regarding bullying situations as they learn and master all the problem-solving steps.
In Fourth Grade, our topic is conflict resolution. We also discuss the Three R's and 6 Pillars of Character- Trustworthiness, Respect, Responsibility, Caring, Fairness and Citizenship and how they relate to our theme of conflict resolution. We then discuss and have role-plays regarding the different types of bullying- verbal, physical, property, exclusion and cyber bullying.
In Fifth Grade, our topic is decision making and we review the types of bullying when we review the school and district rules regarding bullying and how our older students in our elementary schools can be a role model to our younger students! Throughout the year, time is spent preparing students for their transition to the Middle School and effective time management and organizational skills.
Grades 3-5 also have the opportunity to enter the Bullying Prevention Poster contest if they choose to participate.
I wish everyone a great year!!!
Meg Cunningham, School Counselor