Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Parent Book Study with the School Counselors

My co-counselor and I recently concluded our first Book Study with the School Counselors. We had 7 mothers sign up to participate. The book study focused on the book Little Girls Can Be Mean: Four Steps to Bully-Proof Girls in the Early Grades by Michelle Anthony & Reyna Lindert. We met three times to discuss the four steps shared in the book and at our final session we included their daughters for a strengths-based art activity. We prepared PowerPoint presentations to use as a guide for discussions which included powerful quotes from the book and points of interest.

We have received great feedback about the book study from participants and we plan to offer another book study next semester to focus on a boy-centered issue. We sent a Google Form to our participants to survey their experience. Here are a few comments that were shared:

    "I thoroughly enjoyed being able to discuss issues with raising little girls with other moms and our gifted HES professionals. I learned a lot about how to communicate more effectively with my children."

    "I really enjoyed meeting other moms and sharing different challenges we have with our daughters. I have learned a lot from the book, and have already started putting the four steps to good use!"

    "Thank you so much for offering a program like this, not only does it help prepare me for future years with my daughter, but it helps me to reflect on my own friendships. Thank you so much for taking your time to put this together."

Increasing parent participation in our school counseling program is one of our goals for this school year, so this initiative tied in well. We had a blast hosting the book study and we look forward to offering additional session in the future. 

Steps for hosting a successful parent book study:
  • Get the approval of your administration.
  • Choose a book that you think would be of interest to parents across grade levels.
  • Set dates and times that are convenient for parents.
  • Set up and distribute the link to a user-friendly sign up form such as SignUpGenius and promote the book study.
  • Prepare for your sessions by creating a guide for discussion - we used PowerPoint for this purpose.
  • Purchase refreshments or solicit donations from a local sponsor to serve at your sessions.
  • Host your sessions with parents and enjoy!
  • Send participants a Google Form to collect feedback from parents upon completion of the book study.
  • Share your success with stakeholders.
Do you have a book in mind that you think would be great for a parent book study? If so, please leave a comment as we are currently exploring options for our next book study.