Guidance & Learning Counselors

The Elementary School counseling program is an integral part of the total educational program at AHN. It serves to enhance the learning process for all students in grades pre-K through 8. The Academy’s Elementary School Guidance and Learning Counselors are Ms. Cheryl Conlan (Middle School) and Mrs. Megan Lopez (Lower School). In their roles, they work together with school staff, families and members of the community for the benefit of AHN students. The program provides for prevention, intervention and responsive services for students and families. These services are aimed at supporting students as they develop and grow emotionally, socially, spiritually and academically. Services extend to all students through classroom, small-group and individual counseling, as well as workshops and presentations provided by outside organizations.


2018-2019 Program Offerings

Lower School

September

“Introduction to Guidance” lesson to all grade levels/classes

October, 1st Grade

1st Grade More Health Lesson: Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety - “Safe Walkers and Safe Wheels”

“Stop, look, and listen before you cross the street. First use your eyes and ears, then use your feet! Students learn the importance of following the rules for pedestrian safety as they put their walking skills to use on the safe streets model. Students save Safe Town by correcting risky bicycle behaviors with emphasis on wearing a helmet.”

November

Guidance lesson (teacher topic of choice) to all grade levels/classes

December, Kindergarten

Kindergarten More Health Lesson: Poison Prevention - “Bites, Stings, and Other Things”

“Students help Tyrone the Dinosaur get through his awful, rotten, icky, very poisonous day. Students explore dangerous liquids, powders, and sprays under the kitchen sink, while they learn about look-alike products. Spider and snake puppets sing about their dangers and students join Sandy the Stingray in the Stingray Shuffle.”

December, 4th Grade

4th Grade More Health Lesson: Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety - “Rules of the Road”

“Students learn the 'Rules of the Road' for pedestrian and bicycle safety by playing a fun and educational game of Street Smarts Jeopardy. They learn about common distractions that put them in danger and discuss excuses for not wearing a helmet and why helmets are important. Students are taught the importance of being the role model when it comes to safety.”

December, 3rd grade

3rd Grade More Health Lesson: Firearm Safety - “Respect Not Risk”

“HALT! HANDS OFF! GET OUT! GET HELP! Students learn the procedures for firearm safety and how to make safe decisions in potentially dangerous situations. Law enforcement and MORE HEALTH team up to emphasize the importance of treating every firearm as if it is real and loaded.”

December, 2nd grade

2nd Grade More Health Lesson: Bones and Osteoporosis Education - “The Bone Zone”

“Students cheer with Cal Calcium, D The Vitamin, and Eddie Exercise as they learn how to keep their bones healthy, safe, and strong. Students construct a skeletal system with 206 life size bones. They learn about the importance of wearing protective gear when playing sports. Students discover that behaviors such as high consumption of caffeine and alcohol, smoking, and lack of exercise weaken bones and cause Osteoporosis.”

February

Guidance lesson (teacher topic of choice) to all grade levels/classes

April

“End of the Year” guidance lesson to all grade levels/classes

Middle School

5th Grade

September

DACCO Behavioral Health Services – “Communication Skills”

Students will cover the different styles of communication and how to communicate verbally and non-verbally in various social situations. The goal is to provide students with effective communication skills to help them navigate through life successfully.

November

DACCO Behavioral Health Services – “Coping Skills”

Students will discuss the different types of emotions, the importance of accepting all feelings, the definition of coping skills, and identifying the difference between healthy and unhealthy ways of coping with negative feelings. The presentation will end with an arts and crafts activity in which students will create their own “Coping Wheel.”

December

Rights, Respect, Responsibility Curriculum – “Being Clear with Friends”

(RRR) Cheryl Conlan doing lessons during Religion where students will be able to:

  • Successfully demonstrate assertive communication when expressing a difference of opinion with another person.
  • Successfully demonstrate at least one appropriate refusal skill when facing peer pressure.

February

DACCO Behavioral Health Services – “Problem Solving/Decision Making”

Students will discuss how to identify a problem, the steps to decision-making and solving a problem by using the 3 C’s (Clarify, Consider, and Choose), and how to evaluate a decision by determining the risks and rewards of that choice. They will also be discussing who to seek support from when making a difficult decision and how to re-evaluate a decision if it does not produce a positive result. The presentation will include problem-solving scenarios in which the students will implement the steps to decision-making.

6th Grade

September

Attorney General’s Victim Services – “Cyberbullying”

Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Students will learn what cyberbullying is and the consequences, how they can prevent it, how to be safe online and recognize their ability to create change in the world.

October

Rights, Respect, Responsibility Curriculum – “Change is Good”

(RRR) Cheryl Conlan doing single-gender lessons through P.E. Students will be able to:

  • Name at least one physical, social, cognitive and emotional change young people go through during adolescence.
  • Identify at least two websites that contain additional medically accurate information about puberty and adolescence for young people their age.

January

Rights, Respect, Responsibility Curriculum – “Understanding Boundaries”

(RRR) Cheryl Conlan doing single-gender lessons through P.E. Students will be able to:

  • Define what a boundary is, with an emphasis on personal boundaries.
  • Demonstrate how to be clear about one’s own and show respect for others’ boundaries.
  • Demonstrate an understanding that no one has the right to violate someone else’s boundaries, and that doing so may be against the law.
  • Name at least one resource to whom they can report violations to.

February

MoreHealth – “Firearm Safety, Responsibility, Respect & Reason” through Science

Health Education Topics: Injury Prevention & Safety, Mental & Emotional Health. Forty percent of American households own a firearm. Students discuss their responsibility when encountering a firearm. They learn how showing respect for firearms will keep them safe. Students discover how heightened adrenaline during potentially dangerous situations can affect their ability to reason. Lastly, they examine how the media portrays violence and the consequences of bullying.

April

Rights, Respect, Responsibility Curriculum – “More than Friends”

(RRR) Cheryl Conlan doing single-gender lessons through P.E. Students will be able to:

  • Describe at least two characteristic of a friendship, and two characteristics of a romantic relationship.
  • Identify at least two similarities and two differences between friendships and romantic relationships.

7th Grade

September

Attorney General’s Victim Services Program – “Cyberbullying”

Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Students will learn what cyberbullying is and the consequences, how they can prevent it, how to be safe online and recognize their ability to create change in the world.

October

DACCO Behavioral Healthcare – “Peer Pressure”

Students will discuss the difference between positive and negative peer pressure, explore the external and internal factors that can influence our behaviors, and practice ways to handle various situations in which students may experience peer pressure.

November

Rights, Respect, Responsibility Curriculum – “Making Smart Choices”

(RRR) Cheryl Conlan doing lessons through Religion. Students will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of using a decision-making model to determine whether they want to be in a sexual relationship.
  • Demonstrate their understanding of how to apply the SMART decision-making model to real-life situations.

January

DACCO Behavioral Healthcare – “Self-Esteem”

Students will discuss the definition of self-esteem, how self-esteem develops, the difference in self-esteem levels, and how we can change our self-esteem. They will conclude the presentation with an activity in which the students will identify individual self-esteem traits.

February

Rights, Respect, Responsibility Curriculum – “Being Smart, Staying Safe Online”

(RRR) Cheryl Conlan will do lessons through Religion. Students will be able to:

  • Describe positive aspects of online talking and messaging.
  • Identify examples of flirting and chatting that can be inappropriate or risky.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of how to deal with uncomfortable situations when communicating online.

8th Grade

September

Attorney General’s Victim Services Program – “Cyberbullying”

Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Students will learn what cyberbullying is and the consequences, how they can prevent it, how to be safe online and recognize their ability to create change in the world.

October

DACCO – “Drug & Alcohol Awareness”

Students will discuss what is considered a drug and the differences between illicit and licit drugs. They will discuss the consequences of substance abuse including how it impacts the body, their decision-making skills, and relationships with friends and family. The presentation will end with discussion on resistance skills and how to handle various situations in which they may feel pressured to experiment with substances.

November

MoreHealth – “Fit for Life” – Fitness, Nutrition & Bone Health through Science

Health Education Topics: Nutrition & Fitness, Personal Health. The body reaches peak bone mass at age 20! Students discuss the importance of a positive body image and how to set nutrition and fitness goals for life. They receive a daily food and activity journal to track their newly adopted healthy habits. Students also learn how to prevent common diseases including osteoporosis, obesity, heart disease, and diabetes.

December

Rights, Respect, Responsibility Curriculum – “Healthy/Unhealthy Relationships”

(RRR) Cheryl Conlan doing lessons through Religion. Students will be able to:

  • Characterize, in their own opinion, at least one relationship trait as either healthy or unhealthy.
  • Name at least two types of power differential in relationships, as well as their implication for the relationship.
  • Describe at least two ways in which an unhealthy relationship can become a healthy one.
  • Apply their understanding of healthy relationships to a couple represented in the media.

March

Rights, Respect, Responsibility Curriculum – “Talking Without Speaking: The Role of Texting in Relationships”

(RRR) Cheryl Conlan doing lessons through Religion. Students will be able to:

  • Name at least one thing they do and don’t like about communicating via text.
  • Identify at least two ways in which people can miscommunicate via text and the impact these miscommunications can have on their relationship with another person.
  • Explain at least one way of texting clearly and respectfully with another person in an effort to avoid misunderstandings.

April

MoreHealth – “Teen Pregnancy Prevention – Choice not Chance” through Religion

Health Education Topics: Family Life, Mental & Emotional Health, Prevention & Control of Disease. Abstinence is the key to avoiding the risks and consequences of sexual activity. Teens will explore the male and female anatomies and learn how their lives would drastically change if they had a baby or contracted an STD. An interactive activity demonstrates how HIV/AIDS and STDs can be spread.