It is Friday the 13th. And it marks the end of School Psychology Awareness Week, which I totally forgot was this week, just like last year, and the year before. Gah! Every year! But I suppose today is technically still part of the week, so here you go with a post about what I do all day.
And just to be clear, my job description is NOT, as a janitor described to a kid inquiring who I was: “She works with ‘dem crazy kids.” That will NOT be next year’s theme for School Psychologist Awareness Week. I certainly don’t want to see a poster of that. School Psychologists: We work with ‘dem crazy kids. Bad PR.
So, in the spirit of awareness, I give to you:
Top 10 Things I Do All Day as a School Psychologist
(In decending order of how much time I spend doing it)
10) Tracking down the yoots*, aka poking my head into classrooms and trying not to be disruptive while children yell, “Take me! I need therapy!” or “I a’int no f*ing special ed! No!!!”
9) Tracking down teachers to talk about the yoots, trying to get information from them while they are desperately trying to prepare for having 20-30 little friends come in for some more learning.
8) Tracking down administration to ask about a particular yoot/situation/political issue/bureaucratic hoop.
7) Tracking down parents to get information or give them feedback about their yoot (carefully using caller ID blocking so they answer)
6) Group counseling. Trying to promote positive social skills and not accidentally forming a gang.
5) Individual counseling. Topics include: “What were you thinking about when you drew this/said that/did that/brought that,” family problems, peer problems, learning problems, check-ins about traumatic situations, and my favorite: giving positive adult attention and conducting play therapy to process situations.
4) Testing or observing the yoots for every possible reason on Earth that they are having a hard time learning—social, emotional, behavioral, processing, intelligence, situational, inter-personal, historical—everything.
3) Writing reports about yoots that no one reads, but are really informative if you can get past the technical stuff.
2) Attending meetings about yoots to share results of testing in a way everyone can understand to develop interventions.
1) Lovin’ working with ‘dem crazy kids.
Happy School Psychologist Awareness Week!
If I were fancier, I would have some sort of animation that made little confetti fall down over this entry. Maybe next year…if I don’t forget.
* Yoots (noun). Slang for “youth” derived from obscure reference to the classic film, “My Cousin Vinny.” The two yoots were seen fleeing the scene.