Thursday, November 6, 2014

Focus on Freshmen

As in years past the BHS Guidance staff puts a tremendous amount of focus on incoming freshmen. An incoming 9th grader faces many new challenges with the transition to high school. Freshmen are dealing with a new environment, new teachers, more freedom and responsibility, etc. The Guidance staff makes every effort to be in tune with this process and to serve as a resource.

Each year Guidance Counselors meet with freshmen in small groups within the first month of school. We call students to the Guidance Office and introduce ourselves, and discuss the many resources available to them. Although we have found this process useful, we also feel it is not enough. In fact, what we have learned from our freshman over the past several years is that they prefer to hear about graduation requirements, academic expectations, how to go about making a level change, etc.

For a second year the BHS Guidance staff worked with Ms. Sullivan in the health department. Ms. Sullivan allowed the BHS Guidance staff to teach a lesson during her Freshmen health class. The Guidance staff covered and discussed BHS graduation requirements and the importance of identifying resources. One teaching practice that we used again this year was a “ticket to leave”. The ticket to leave is simply a form that we ask freshmen to complete at the end of the lesson so we can gauge if students understood what was covered. Based on the data, we felt our message was clear to a vast majority of freshmen.  We look forward to continuing and refining this practice in years to come. 

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