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5 Traits Every Elementary School Counselor Should Possess

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Being a good school counselor requires a unique individual with the essential traits. This profession involves spending long hours interacting with students, guardians, and school personnel; thus, you must possess a unique counseling ability. School counselors are mandated to assist kids in resolving issues with their education, wellbeing, and social, individual, and family issues. The counselor spends time listening to what people have to say, records their observations, and assists learners in working through their problems by making appropriate recommendations to other services.

They are arbitrators, negotiators, and champions for learners. They plan and carry out initiatives to assist everybody in thriving in the learning environment while laying the groundwork for the subsequent phases of their lives. Below are the five best qualities that an elementary school counselor should possess:

1. Good Listening Skills

Elementary school counseling involves engaging with learners frequently, one-on-one or in groups. The student counselors are often under pressure to complete several tasks in a short period; thus, it might be tempting to attempt to cut corners and get things done. Counselors also need to steer the discourse and be supportive of the kids’ thoughts and perspectives since they’ve received training in the discipline of listening. It takes student counselors’ experience, sensitivity, and honesty to grasp body gestures, contextual cues, matters left unsaid, and euphemisms.

The most fundamental human want is the desire to understand and be understood. And listening to individuals is the best approach to understanding them. Counselors should be completely present at the moment while listening to be effective; other thoughts should not preoccupy their thoughts; instead, they should focus on the current topic. Thinking back to the individual, your grasp of what they stated enables you to demonstrate understanding and helps them to improve themselves. Additionally, the school counselor should maintain an open-minded attitude and exercise caution before passing judgment without fully hearing the student’s perspective.

2. Strong Assessment Abilities

Strong assessment abilities are essential characteristics of an elementary student counselor because, although record keeping is a vital requirement in many areas of the student-counselor engagement, it cannot replace the evaluation of non-verbal and verbal cues of the learners’ concerns. Guidance counselors ought to analyze circumstances, comprehend context, link relevant data, and make preliminary judgments to advance kids to the following counseling stages or to determine the next course of action to address their problems. The guidance counselor should be a skilled observer able to assist and guide learners as they express their concerns.

Knowing where ability and desire converge is crucial for providing sound advice in all areas of evaluation, spanning academic and ability evaluation to personality assessment and career counseling. The assessment process also entails identifying whether a child has unique challenges and analyzing test and non-test findings to establish where to place a learner and what courses will suit them most.

3. Authoritative

A good school counselor should have strong leadership qualities. The counselor needs to learn how to handle circumstances that can occasionally be emotionally charged and even devastating. Counselors should take the initiative in meetings with students and parents and direct the conversation to ensure everyone benefits. They must be tough, assertive, and empathetic even in challenging situations. While a counselor should be personable with a child, they should also be in charge occasionally. To ensure that students are making good decisions, a counselor has to guide them.

A counselor needs to cross the line between friend and professional occasionally. They should know when to assert control and take the necessary action to protect their students in cases of abuse, abandonment, or unsafe or destructive behavior.

4. A Good Sense of Humor

Possessing a good sense of humor helps counselors earn a pupil’s trust. The ability to laugh at oneself and share humorous anecdotes about your personal experiences will demonstrate to children that you are surprisingly also human! Viewing things with a sense of humor is a key quality for any student counselor and makes your days more enjoyable.

Humor is often one of the most valuable resources in gaining students’ confidence and forging relationships. The counselor’s attempts to communicate a point are frequently shown by how those learners interact with grownups through puns or fascinating anecdotes. Humor also acts as a stress reliever. Finding the humor in disruptions and other common occurrences helps a counselor unwind and avert worry from dominating different circumstances.

5. Empathy

Empathy is among the essential traits of a counselor because it fosters confidence, which is necessary for communication with kids and teenagers. Good listening skills are essential; however, they won’t cut it without genuineness, tolerance, and humor, mainly when speaking with young kids. 

Counselors can better comprehend the root problems of individuals through listening and placing themselves in the same context, whether as a kid or another school staff. A counselor cannot be helpful if they cannot grasp what the person is experiencing. He must cast aside their perspective to be more compassionate. They should also support the student’s position, which might not always depict consensus. Instead, it implies accepting their right to hold a stance and the understanding that they have reasonable justifications for it.

Summary

In summary, anyone who enjoys interacting with children and is considering a career in teaching should explore student counseling. Good counselors often have five traits in common, which may be of value to people who want to work as counselors.

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