Friday, September 21, 2012

Be Proactive!

It's official, I am PUMPED about teaching the 7 Habits at my school.  I think in the past 3 weeks I have used the word "proactive" at least a thousand times.  To me, if our students can learn, practice and do this first habit, then they are limitless in what they are able to accomplish!  I've taught it to all grade levels differently, but everyone has heard my definition of Be Proactive: Being proactive means that you take control of things in your life rather than letting things in your life take control of you.

I used the example of someone hating the rain and deciding to just stay home and not do anything they had planned because of the rain.  What is in control in that example?  THE RAIN!  Instead, what could that person bring or do so that they are in control?  An umbrella! :)  We also talked about the difference in being proactive (like a water bottle) and reactive (like a soda bottle). The kids really got it, and I continued to provide them examples in each lesson.

My favorite lessons were with the upper grades.  I used the circle of control to talk about how we should spend our time and energy focused on things that we actually can control and make better rather than spending time complaining, feeling bad about ourselves, or giving other people the power to ruin our days.  Then, in 5th grade, I got a wonderful idea from another counselor in my district.  Each student created a Personal Proactive Plan for ways that they were going to be proactive at home, at school and outside of home and school.  They folded a piece of paper into thirds and came up with ideas that they could do to be proactive in those three areas.  I shared my own PPP to help get them started thinking of ideas.  We talked about how it was like a contract with themselves to practice being proactive all year.

I've caught so many students being proactive since our lesson, and I love complimenting them on it!  How have you been proactive this school year?

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