Sunday, March 3, 2019

Dear JES Family and Friends,

Thank you to our JES PTO and the parent and student volunteers who worked on Project Linus! We have thirty seven fleece blankets which will be donated to the project and be dispersed to local hospitals. These blankets "provide love, a sense of security, warmth and comfort to children who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need through the gifts of new, handmade blankets...lovingly created by volunteer blanketeers." Those blanketeers are us - JES DRAGON Family!

A Message from the CISD Counselors

Dear Carroll ISD families,
In the last few days, there has been significant national media coverage about a disturbing internet challenge known as “The Momo Challenge.”  CISD has received a number of calls from parents after seeing or hearing about Momo Challenge posts on social media. Please know that we have not had any instances of this happening at school or on school devices.

Although this appears to be more fear than fact and most trusted sources are calling it a hoax, due to the concerns related to this challenge, we are sharing this information with you as you may want to talk with your child.

Allegedly, Momo targets young children through various online apps (e.g. YouTube, Minecraft, WhatsApp, etc.), and encourages them to complete a series of increasingly bizarre and dangerous tasks from watching a horror movie to engaging in self-harm to taking their own lives. According to national news reports, children as young as 6 years old have heard of the “Momo” challenge, which is similar to the “Slender Man” and “The Blue Whale” challenges in years past.
We encourage parents to have intentional conversations with them about what they encounter online on their personal devices. Please consider age appropriateness and exposure from older siblings or friends. Let them know that if they see scary things pop up on phones, tablets, or computers that they should reach out to a parent, teacher, school counselor, or principal. Remind them to block unknown numbers asking them to play. Students should have an expectation that you will be monitoring their photos, conversations, and social media.

The following resources may be helpful in helping our young learners navigate the internet, as well as tools for parents in a digital age.

Family Online Safety Institute: 
https://www.fosi.org/good-digital-parenting

 Creating a Family Media Plan (American Academy of Pediatrics): https://www.healthychildren.org/English/media/Pages/default.aspx

 Teaching Kids About Internet Safety (GCFLearnFree.org)
https://edu.gcfglobal.org/en/internetsafetyforkids/teaching-kids-about-internet-safety/1/

 Protecting Kids Online (Federal Trade Commission)


As always, if you have questions or concerns, please email or call your campus principal or the campus counselor.

INDIVIDUALITY - March Character Trait
We will discussing Discovering who you are meant to be so you can make a difference. Check out the career assessment for kids in the Family Ezine you received from your classroom teacher.


As always, if I can help in any way please contact me at Elizabeth.Johnston@southlakecarroll.edu or 817 949 4500.
Kindest regards,
Ziba Johnston

Sunday, February 3, 2019

February - A Time for SERVICE

Dear JES Family and Friends,

February is SERVICE month. Our Core Essential definition is lending a hand to help someone else.
This month every child at JES will have an opportunity to be involved in a school wide blanket project where we will be making fleece blankets for Project Linus. The blankets will be given to "provide love, a sense of security, warmth and comfort to children who are seriously ill, traumatized, or otherwise in need through the gifts of new, handmade blankets and afghans lovingly created by volunteer "blanketeers". Those blanketeers are our students and parent volunteers! Secondly, the Project Linus provides a rewarding and fun service opportunity for interested individuals and groups in local communities, for the benefit of children." For more information visit : Project Linus  

Volunteers are needed to prepare the fleece so the children can finish the edges. No previous experience is required. You just need a steady hand. Training will be provided on the spot. Go to  :
                                
https://www.signupgenius.com/go/5080d45a4aa29a20-project

Research shows that when we give in service to others, the giver receives, as well. As Mahatma Gandhi said it..."The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in service to others."

If I can help in any way, please contact me at 817 949 4500.

Kindest regards,

Ziba Johnston
JES Counselor


Sunday, January 13, 2019

January's Character Trait - SELF-CONTROL

THANKS FOR YOUR GENEROSITY
Thank you to all of the Johnson Family for your contribution toward our Compassion Countdown providing a gift for our custodians and cafeteria ladies. The total contribution collected was $1,312. On the last Thursday before the Winter Break, the fourth grade Ambassadors of Kindness presented handmade cards and Walmart gift cards in appreciation for all these staff members do for our school toward keeping us healthy! We honor and acknowledge them for their service!




Our Core Essential character trait for January is SELF-CONTROL defined as choosing to do what you should even when you don’t want to . When thinking about what are the most important skills to teach a child, we think of reading and writing and of course math and then there is science and social studies. But, perhaps one of the most valuable skills a child needs to develop is SELF-CONTROL. There is research that shows that a person’s ability to practice self-control is a predictor of future success. We will be emphasizing the value of SELF-CONTROL all this month.



Mental Health and Wellness are the district's focus for January. Here is the link to the district newsletter. Visit the link to learn more…https://www.smore.com/0p7vk-carroll-dragon-s-breath





DRAGON DIAMONDS Incentive Program

The Dragon Diamonds incentive program provided by our generous PTO continues this year! Dragon Diamonds are rewarded to those students who do acts of kindness “above and beyond” every day courtesy. All eyes are looking for acts of kindness!!! A teacher incentive has been added to the rewards. Each Friday five students’ names are drawn from the collection of Dragon Diamond slips in each grade to come to the Friendship Bench and select a prize! From those five winners, one name is drawn and that student’s teacher (or whoever awarded the slip)will receive a gift certificate. Let’s work together to help our children know that we can choose to be kind in all circumstances.


A PARTING THOUGHT...


One last thing, I want to share an incredible website that offers useful parenting articles based on current research. The website is Hey Sigmund and currently addresses the continuing concern about anxiety in our children.
https://www.heysigmund.com/ 
Resiliency is also a relevant topic. We are working in the district to learn how to increase resiliency in our students. I would enjoy hearing what you think about this website.


As always, if I can assist you in any way, please contact me.

Kindest regards,

Ziba Johnston

Counselor 
817 949 4500
Elizabeth.Johnston@southlakecarroll.edu

Thursday, December 6, 2018

COMPASSION COUNTDOWN

Dear JES family and friends,

     The COMPASSION COUNTDOWN
               for our Custodians and Cafeteria Ladies

All JES students are being challenged to “earn” a dollar to donate toward a gift for the cafeteria and custodial staffs. The fourth grade Ambassadors of Kindness are leading this dollar drive. We are collecting through December 14th. The gifts are to be presented during fourth grade lunch the week before we go on Winter Break. 

Thanks to all the children who have done an extra chore or had a bake sale to raise money to donate to this worthy cause. A big  thank you to the parents who reinforce how important it is to acknowledge the hard work that these staff members. They contribute a service that keeps our school healthy and safe.

COMPASSION

Our Core Essential character value for December is COMPASSION  which is defined as caring enough to do something about someone else’s need. We will be talking about COMPASSION in counseling lessons. COMPASSION is an important character value that can easily be reinforce at home. Sharing your experiences with compassion and listening to what your child says about it is invaluable.  

OUTREACH

We will be working on several service projects throughout the year to give our students opportunities to “give back”. Look for our next project coming in January! Research shows that when children (and adults) give they experience positive feelings that lead to a greater sense of self-worth. Giving promotes cooperation, social connections and gratitude. Research has found that gratitude is integral to happiness and health. Watch for opportunities for our students to get involved in the experience of giving.

DRAGON’S BREATH

The district wide mental health focus this month is Kindness and Compassion. You can view the Dragon’s Breath newsletter at https://www.smore.com/5bzpr-carroll-dragon-s-breath to read about the district emphasis on kindness. 

As always, if I can assist you in any way, please call.

Kindest regards,

Ziba Johnston

Counselor
817 949 4500

Sunday, November 11, 2018

    Grandparents and Special Person's Day 
                       Thursday, November 15th 
I hope you will join your child for a special lunch prepared by our wonderful Cafeteria Staff. It is a fun day for our students to join with other families to share a meal of thanks. So whether you buy your lunch or bring it, please join us!
        Our character trait for November  Cooperation defined as working together to do more than you can do alone. When thinking about what are the most important skills to teach a child, we think of reading and writing and of course math and then there is science and social studies. Perhaps one of the most valuable skills a child learns at school is cooperation with their peers and the classroom environment. We had a great time last month with the character trait of Contentment. We will be emphasizing  the value of cooperation all this month.

Current research endorsed by the American Psychological Association states that "today's children will forge careers that look nothing like those their parents and grandparents knew. Even the definition of 'career' and 'job' are changing as people create new businesses and services. Employers want to hire excellent communicators, critical thinkers, and innovators. So what can we do to help our children? At home and at school, we can teach the 6Cs - collaboration, communication, content, critical thinking, creative innovation and confidence. These skills will make up the straight A report card for success in the 21st century." https://becoming-brilliant.com/

Visit the CISD Dragon's Breath at the link: District Mental Health Newsletter



I am so grateful for the opportunity to share in your children's lives. There is no place like JES!

Happy Thanksgiving!
Ziba Johnston
Elizabeth.johnston@southlakecarroll.edu
817 949 4500




Sunday, September 30, 2018

OCTOBER - Contentment

Dear JES Family and Friends,

October as always is shaping up to be a busy one! Our character value for this month is CONTENTMENT defined as: Deciding to be happy with what you have.  I hope you continue to use the Core Essentials Values to spark conversations at home. When we work together, school and home, we can do amazing things!

DRAGONS GO BLUE!

On October 1st we celebrate World Day of Bullying Prevention. All throughout Dragon Country, we ask that everyone wear blue to bring awareness to the issue of bullying. We will be participating in activities that raise awareness of being kind and standing up for others throughout the month. Around the district we are awakening Rachel's Challenge in an effort to address bullying and the power of one to create a chain reaction of kindness. For more information visit rachelschallenge.org  At the K-4th grade level we discuss Rachel as a girl who was a role model for being kind, including and standing up for others. Ask your child about signing the banner pledging to be kind.

COGAT and ITBS for 4th Grade

On the 2nd of this month our fourth graders will be taking the CogAT test. The Cognitive Abilities Test (CogAT) measures students’ learned reasoning abilities in the three areas most linked to academic success in school: Verbal, Quantitative and Nonverbal. On October16th and 17th our fourth graders will be taking the Iowa Test of Basic Skills or ITBS. Although the primary goal of CogAT is to assess students’ reasoning abilities, it can also provide predicted achievement scores when administered with the Iowa tests.

There is no special preparation you need to do at home for these tests. What you can do to help your student is make sure they are rested, well fed, and present at school on time on testing days. Please check your calendar and make sure that you have not scheduled doctor appointments during these mornings.

A parent letter went home a few weeks ago about the upcoming tests that should address any questions you might have about the actual test and its purpose.   Of course, as always, if you have additional questions, please contact me at Elizabeth.Johnston@southlakecarroll.edu or Haily.May@southlakecarroll.edu

Red Ribbon Week October 22nd – 26th 
This is a district wide drug awareness celebration.  We will kick off the week with a fun theme for each day! Watch for information on the daily themes. Southlake Fire Department and Police will be dropping by for a safety lesson. The benefits of leading a healthy lifestyle will be our emphasis. Please take advantage of this opportunity to talk with your children about making good decisions. It’s never too soon to start that
conversation.

Back to Back to Back Compassions Cup Champions!

Congratulations to the most generous school family!!!! You are amazing! A THREE PEAT! What an achievement for our campus. There is no higher honor that we could receive than to be recognized as the most compassionate school in CISD!

Way to go JES!    

Kind regards,

Ziba Johnston
JES Counselor                              

Monday, September 3, 2018

Character Trait for September ~ INITIATIVE

Dear JES Family and Friends,

What fun it has been welcoming the children back to school! We are excited to get to know our many newcomers! We are working on settling into classroom routines. I will be visiting each classroom to introduce myself and having a short lesson about kindness and taking INITIATIVE. During the month of September, we will be talking about the character trait INITIATIVE defined as "seeing what needs to be done and doing it".

RACHEL'S CHALLENGE

On September 26th, we will have an assembly to introduce Rachel's Challenge to our students in a district wide initiative to promote a positive school culture. The program's anti bullying message encourages kindness and community service. Watch for more information coming from the district about Rachel's Challenge. 

MENTAL HEALTH and WELLNESS

Our district focus this month is Mental Health and Wellness with an emphasis on stress management and Suicide Awareness. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention,  suicides for children younger than 10 are rare. However, suicide is the second leading cause of death for individuals between 10-24 and is on the rise. Educate yourself on the risk factors and warning signs. A threat of self injury is a mental health crisis. The national suicide hotline is 1800-273-8255. The school district is here to partner with you to support your child. Let me know how we can help.

Are You A Lawnmower Parent?

An interesting article that recently came to my attention  began with the question : Are you a lawnmower parent? It is definitely a good read for any parent. I have to admit I have been a helicopter parent and maybe a lawnmower parent, until the realization that the message that I was sending to my child that they could not handle it(what ever "it" was) so I would have to step in. Our children need to take risks and fail so they can see that it is not the end of the world to fail or fall short. That there is life after a mistake and that it is ok...even for us parents. http://www.weareteachers.com/lawnmower-parents/

What an exciting time to have the whole school year before us! If I can help in any way, you can reach me at 817 949 4500 or Elizabeth.johnston@southlakecarroll.edu

Kindest regards,

Ziba Johnston
JES Counselor

@JESCounselor