Technology and social media have quickly become the primary ways in which our students connect with each other. With this shift in the way students communicate, student’s today face new challenges regarding social skill development and cyberbullying. Yet, among these challenges are numerous benefits to our technology-driven world. As experts of communication, I believe school counselors need to make every effort to join our students in their wired worlds. When school counselors embrace technology, we are tapping into an abundance of resources that provide us with new ways to engage our students. Plus, technology is fun!

At my middle school internship site, the school counselors were provided with ipads, which we have been playing with over the past three weeks. There are many useful apps on this tech tool that can enhance any school counseling program. Using the ipad, we put together a few very useful videos and presentations, which can be viewed in the classroom or on the school’s website. Instead of scrambling to visit over 30 classrooms during the frantic first weeks of school, we sent our “Meet Your School Counselor” video to teachers to play in their classroom. Included in the presentation was a video tour of the student services office and instructions for how students may request to see their school counselor. To create a personal connection, we visited students during lunch periods and offered treats to students who shared what they learned in the video. This quick and easy experiment with technology is just one example of how school counselors can use technology to connect with students and maximize the use of their time (or in this case, be in two places at once!). 

Until I get my hands on my very own ipad, I still have access to a variety of tech tools that help me organize find creative school counseling resources. I would like to take a moment to share a few resources I have been working with recently. 
  1. I cannot say enough about how amazing Pinterest is in terms of school counseling resource sharing. I have found a ton of creative ideas for ways to support and connect with students through Pinterest, and I promise this will not be the last time you hear me praise this amazing site! 
  2. Livebinders is another resource I have just become familiar with that would be great in terms of organizing links to resources that may be helpful for students and/or their parents or guardians. 
  3. PreziSliderocket, and youtube offer creative ways to make presentations come to life. I was introduced to some of these tools during staff training at my internship site, and I love them. Prezi is my favorite presentation tool so far because it allows for a lot of creative freedom to make your presentation a memorable experience.
  4. My final tech shout out goes to mass texting tool called Remind101. Using this tool, a teacher friend of my is able to sent reminders and updates about her second grade class to parent’s cell phones. This could be a great tool that school counselors might utilize to connect with students and parents/guardians. Imagine how cool it would be to send students and their families positive messages, words of encouragement, and reminders about school counseling services. I look forward to trying this out! 

There are so many resources at our fingertips, and the list continues to grow. What are your favorite tech tools, and how are you utilizing them to enhance student learning?


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