One of the things I love most about being a middle school counselor is running groups. I love being able to talk with the kids up close and personal while teaching them skills at the same time. What I have learned over the years, is that some groups (actually for me–most groups) should be single sexed and not co-ed. Their needs are different. Girls are OK with just talking, boys, on the other hand, like to be moving. Even the quietest ones become talkers when you have them physically doing something.
I am proud to say that after working with boys for several years now, I wrote a curriculum just for them called Building Champions. A fun-filled game plan to help boys of upper elementary and middle-school age build trust, respect, and peer connections, Building Champions covers the topics boys most want and need to become better friends, classmates, and citizens. Numerous hands-on and interactive experiences maintain group members’ interest and allow them to practice targeted skills while learning.
Eight group lessons cover the following topics:
- Introduction to Building Champions
- Breaking a Sweat (Goal Setting)
- In the Huddle (Integrity and Respect)
- Hands In (Relationships)
- Game Time (Leadership and Teamwork)
- Sitting on the Bench (Self-Control)
- The Last Play (Confidence)
- Shake Hands, Game Over (Being a Good Sport)
Each lesson after the first includes three teaching options to address the needs of different types of groups. A CD included with the book provides reproducible items, including lesson “exit slips,” student handouts, and program organization and progress tracking forms.
Here are some reviews that have come in about Building Champions:
“Carol Miller’s book Building Champions is absolutely the best group curriculum for boys out there. The activities, themes, handouts, and materials are easily laid out for school counselors to follow and implement in their school counseling programs. Additionally, the curriculum is aligned with the ASCA Mindsets and Behaviors, which is an extra bonus! I would highly recommend Building Champions to every school counselor.”
“Who better than a school counselor to design a curriculum for champions? Carol Miller has focused on how boys can improve their academic, social/emotional, and career goals to become champions. I love how she has used a variety of learning styles to focus on each student’s strength. See for yourself how this resource can improve your program.”
Middle School Counselor, River Bluff, Wisconsin
Past President, Wisconsin School Counselor Association
“Carol Miller truly understands the nature of boys! Being a mother of three boys and a school counselor to hundreds more, I appreciate the hands-on activities and analogies that she uses throughout Building Champions.”