Mason County News
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Mason Elementary/Jr. High Counselor’s Corner
Wednesday, February 17, 2010 • Posted February 17, 2010

Wow! The fall semester flew by! We are almost through our 4th six weeks and I am amazed every day by all the good things that are happening at Mason ISD. I just wanted to write a short note to inform you of a few of the things we have going on in the counseling department at Mason Elementary/ Jr. High.

Last semester in grades 4, 5, & 7 we had a total of 40 students that qualified to participate in the Duke University Talent Identification Program, or Duke TIP for short! Since 1980, Duke University has served as a resource to help motivate students to focus on their academic achievement, reward positive performance, and provide students with information and independent learning opportunities. There is a search for 4th and 5th graders and also one for 7th graders. Students had to make a 95% or better on a qualifying test in order to be eligible to participate in the Duke TIP.

At Mason Elementary, we implemented a Character program called, Character Counts! It is a character curriculum created by the Josepheson Institute of Ethics. The program is designed to help students develop the skills they need to make good choices in their lives every day.

Each six weeks we discuss a different "pillar" of character. The pillars are: trustworthiness, respect, responsibility, fairness, caring, and citizenship. To reinforce the pillars, the entire Elementary staff can write "Character Cards" to the students for performing kind deeds and going the extra mile to help another person.

When a student receives a character card, we read their names during the morning announcements, they are given a special treat at the awards assembly, and then they are entered in a drawing for a "Webkinz" stuffed animal. We have given two Webkinz away each six weeks! Thank you staff for spending the extra time to write all the character cards! We have had over 50 each six weeks! WOW!

Around the corner at Mason Junior High, in December of 2009, we hosted a program over bully prevention, emotions, and respecting personal space. The assembly was lead by Mr. John Redwine, an education and prevention specialist at the Concho Valley Rape Crisis Center. It was very informative and Mr. Redwine gave us some great tips.

Right now at the Junior High we are working on a program to help reinforce student success in the classroom. The name of the program is "P-T-P", or "It Pays to Perform". Our hope is that this program will offer a little extra incentive to all students to try their best every day in the classroom.

Our program will be based on a reward system in each core class. The students will be given opportunities to earn "tickets" for their class jar. These tickets will be given at the discretion of the classroom teachers. At the end of the year, Mr. Askins and I will have a drawing for special prizes for two students from every class. We will also have "mini" drawings throughout the year for various smaller prizes.

Thank you to the students and their families for making 2009 a success! I hope we can continue our success in 2010!

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