15-MINUTE FOCUS SERIES

Brief Counseling Techniques That Work

Click on a book cover to learn more about that title.

15-Minute Focus is a new series that aims to help school counselors and educators overcome three of the biggest challenges they face:

  • Limited Time to manage the number of students for whom they are responsible
  • Mental Illness Stigma
  • Budget Constraints for Ongoing Training

Each week, students are spending more time at school than they spend with their parents. Because of this, teachers, counselors, and other school staff are often among the first to notice changes in behavior that could signal a mental or behavioral health issue.

According to the American School Counselor Association, students’ unmet mental health needs can be a significant obstacle to academic, career, and social/emotional development and even compromise school safety. Most students in need do not receive adequate mental health supports. Research indicates 20 percent of students need mental health services, yet only one out of five of these students receive the necessary services.

Working alongside experts in various fields of mental health counseling, NCYI has developed a series of research-based, brief counseling books that home-in on a specific mental health topic, signs to look for, practical intervention and classroom management strategies, and effective ways to communicate and collaborate with internal staff, outside referrals, and student families.

15-Minute Focus Series

  • 15-Minute Counseling Techniques that Work
  • Anxiety: Worry, Stress, and Fear
  • Behavior Interventions: Strategies for Educators, Counselors, and Parents
  • Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management for K-12 Schools
  • Depression: Signs and Strategies for Counselors, Educators, and Parents
  • Grief: Processing and Recovery
  • Self-Harm and Self-Injury: When Emotional Pain Becomes Physical
  • Suicide: Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention
  • Trauma and Adverse Childhood Experiences

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Behavior Interventions: Strategies for Educators, Counselors, and Parents

In 15-Minute Focus: Behavior Interventions, Amie Dean gives educators, counselors, and parents knowledge, strategies, and resources to teach children and teens how to communicate and make decisions to get their needs met in positive ways through behavior instruction and coaching.

If a child or teen is struggling to manage emotions or make good choices, it is rarely because they want to be “bad” or disrespectful. Most adults look for the “right” way or a magic formula that will transform challenging students, with no luck on finding one. Impacting behavioral change in another person is hard work, and every individual has unique needs and circumstances that should be considered. This book will help you view children’s words and actions as a lack of coping skills in the moment, or a skill deficit that can be taught and improved.

You’ll discover:

  • The function of behavior
  • Ways to rethink responses to behavior
  • De-escalation techniques
  • Steps to create a trauma-sensitive classroom
  • Principles for a positive classroom
  • Actionable strategies, curated resources, and more!

This guide will ask you to consider that there is likely a barrier keeping children from being successful, and it is our opportunity as the adults who care for them to help them through it.

Dean, Amie

Written by Amie Dean

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Anxiety: Worry, Stress, and Fear

In 15-Minute Focus: Anxiety, Worry, Stress, and Fear, Dr. Leigh Bagwell gives counselors and educators a step-by-step primer on how to support students who struggle with anxiety.

Anxiety can cause students to feel isolated and overwhelmed, preventing them from learning and engaging in the classroom. Rather than tell our students not to worry, our job as educators should be to recognize when our students are struggling with anxiety and get them the support they need. In this book, Bagwell explains the physiological progression from a trigger to a full-blown anxiety attack, and provides a variety of prevention and intervention strategies for school counselors, educators, and administrators.

What you’ll get:

  • Understanding of anxiety and clarification of anxiety vs. misbehavior
  • Breakdown of various anxiety disorders and how they present
  • Helpful tips for parents who have anxious children
  • Curated list of resources, including organizations, curriculum, books, and more!

When students experience anxiety, they need help navigating through it. This guide will teach school counselors, educators, and administrators how to become powerful advocates for their students so they can thrive in the classroom and in life.

Written by Dr. Leigh Bagwell

Click to learn more about Leigh and her books.

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For Bulk Orders, please call us toll-free at 866-318-6294. Receive 10% off for 30-49 copies ordered, and 15% off for 50+ copies ordered.

The resources in this book are available for you as a digital download! To download the resources click the link below and enter in the code provided in your book.

This is really great for a school book study on working and helping kids who have anxiety and how to help in the school setting. Although it’s a quick read that can easily be done in a night, it offers a lot of good insight on how to work with kids that face anxiety in their everyday lives. I really like how there are case studies of children and then questions to help work through what you can best do to help. I also like that there are practical suggestions on how to ease anxiety.
Carol Miller, School Counselor

This book is a great resource for teachers, school building staff, counselors and parents. It is an easy read and packed with informative tips on how to better understand anxiety. I especially like the connection to the brain and how anxiety is often mistaken for problem behavior. I highly recommend this for anyone working with kids that need to better understand the role of anxiety and how it manifests.
Shannon Dobson, Behavior Specialist & Educator

Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management for K-12 Schools

In 15-Minute Focus: Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management for K-12 Schools, Dr. Melissa A. Louvar Reeves explains the interrelated factors that play a role in a person’s decision to plan and carry out an act of violence.

Every year, stories about violence in schools make headlines around the world. And every year, questions surface: How could this have been prevented? What were the warning signs? What changes do we need to make in our schools and communities to prevent this from happening yet again?

This book will help answer those questions, as you learn about the factors that affect decision-making, and the role of Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management (BTAM) in managing students’ troubling behaviors, mitigating risk for the school and community, and directing students onto more positive pathways.

In this book, you’ll discover:

  • Why schools should establish BTAM teams and protocols
  • How to establish a BTAM team
  • Identifying and reporting concerns
  • Establishing protocols for evaluating threats
  • How teachers, administrators, counselors and the community can work together to mitigate troubling behavior and ensure student success
  • Ways to assist struggling students as they transition to adult life after high school

Educators, administrators, and school counselors have been trained on how to respond to a student who is suicidal or despondent. This book helps translate those skills to assist someone who is thinking about harming others.

Reeves, Melissa

Written by Dr. Melissa A. Louvar Reeves

Click to learn more about Melissa and her books.

Click on the icon of a retailer below to order the book

For Bulk Orders, please call us toll-free at 866-318-6294. Receive 10% off for 30-49 copies ordered, and 15% off for 50+ copies ordered.

The resources in this book are available for you as a digital download! To download the resources click the link below and enter in the code provided in your book.

This book is great not just for counselors, but also administrators, district-level teams, SRO’s, and school boards. It has tons of relevant and timely information packed into one short and easy-to-read resource. I would recommend this book for a summer book study for all educational leaders and school boards. This guide goes into the 8 Steps of establishing a quality BTAM process (a system used by the Secret Service!). It looks at threat assessments through an educational MTSS lens and that of a law enforcement side- a marriage of two agencies. I found so many parts of this book relevant, so it’s important for schools at every grade level. High school counselors you will find this book very helpful!
Laura Filtness, School Counselor

This book holds a ton of helpful resources and tools for school staff but is SUPER EASY to read. Dr. Reeves reviews the 8 step process of quality BTAM, the why and how behind the importance of school teams, and most importantly ways to help students the ensure their success. Additionally, the importance of quality SEL and understanding the difference between MAKING and POSING a threat. If your school or school district needs guidance on how to establish protocols and teaming then this is your go to resource.
Shannon Dobson, Behavior Specialist & Educator

Depression: Signs and Strategies for Counselors, Educators, and Parents

In 15-Minute Focus: Depression: Signs and Strategies for Counselors, Educators, and Parents, Dr. Melisa Marsh provides a comprehensive look at depression and its effects on children and teenagers.

While depression is a common problem in our world today, it often goes unreported and untreated. And sadly, many youth believe they are alone in their pain. Children and teens may not know how to identify their troubling thoughts and emotions, so they need the adults in their lives to recognize their cries for help.

This book will equip counselors, educators, and family members with a detailed understanding of depression and offer tools for intervention so no student or peer goes unnoticed in their struggle.

In this book, you’ll discover:

  • Symptoms of depression
  • Different types of depressive disorders
  • How to identify depression versus sadness
  • The connection between depression and other mental illnesses
  • How school staff can support students with depression
  • Successful management of depression

Each chapter includes a case study that illustrates an aspect of dealing with depression, along with questions to apply the book’s principles in your own context. In addition, Dr. Marsh provides a comprehensive list of tools adults can use to support and improve the overall mental health of students, themselves, and peers.

Written by Dr. Melisa Marsh

Click to learn more about Melisa and her books.

Click on the icon of a retailer below to order the book

For Bulk Orders, please call us toll-free at 866-318-6294. Receive 10% off for 30-49 copies ordered, and 15% off for 50+ copies ordered.

The resources in this book are available for you as a digital download! To download the resources click the link below and enter in the code provided in your book.

It’s no secret that children and adolescents have been struggling in the last year like none other. This book is great for quick, easy-to-implement strategies to help students struggling with depression. It has also given me tools, as a parent, to help my 14-year-old daughter at home. It’s important to be able to determine the difference between everyday sadness and depression that is more debilitating which can cause longer-term hopelessness (suicidal thoughts, etc.). This book provides tips and tools for navigating depression in our youth.
Kristen Tulisan, School Counselor

The 15 minute Focus: Depression begins by taking a much needed look at the difference in depression and sadness. There is a very helpful chapter on symptoms and key warning signs and another on the links between depression and other mental illnesses. School counselors will especially appreciate the chapters on the “Mind and Depression” and “Tools for Schools.” These chapters provide counselors with positive thinking strategies and a descriptive list of research-based tools that can be used by school counselor to helps students dealing with depression.
Jeannie Maddox, Author of Exploring School Counseling Blog

Grief: Processing and Recovery

In 15-Minute Focus: Grief: Processing and Recovery, Dave Opalewski offers school counselors and educators a primer on how to handle the death of a student or staff member.

No matter if the death was sudden or the result of a long illness, it can devastate an entire school family and its surrounding community. Students are impacted every time they walk into a classroom and see a classmate’s empty desk or a substitute teacher sitting at a deceased teacher’s desk. When tragedies like this occur, schools must respond quickly and offer what grieving students and staff need most—comfort. In this book, Opalewski gives schools a guide for addressing the death of a student or staff member, including what to say and what not to say to students along with helpful communication and intervention strategies for school counselors, educators, and administrators.

What you’ll get:

  • Learning the concepts and implementation process of “comfort before counseling”
  • Grief research and data for children and adolescents
  • Grief support group setup
  • Activities to help students process grief, classroom activities, tips for parents, and more!

No school can truly prepare for the death of a student or staff member. A loss like this will shake the school family. But this book will give counselors and educators the information they need to respond to tragedy with understanding and comfort so that they can help students and staff work through their grief in a positive and productive way.

Opalewski, Dave

Written by David A. Opalewski, M.A.

Click to learn more about Dave and his books.

Click on the icon of a retailer below to order the book

For Bulk Orders, please call us toll-free at 866-318-6294. Receive 10% off for 30-49 copies ordered, and 15% off for 50+ copies ordered.

The resources in this book are available for you as a digital download! To download the resources click the link below and enter in the code provided in your book.

1 in 14 children will experience the death of a parent or sibling before age 18 (CBEM,2020). This book is a must have for ALL school officials. It is important to know how to respond in a healthy manner when a student experiences a death and or for the death of a student. It is a great reference to skim when preparing to support students. It is laid out in an easy/ clear manner. Together we can help students find healthy ways to navigate their grief.
Stephanie Heitkemper, LPC RPT

The thing about grief is it feels like no one ever knows what to say and we worry we might say the wrong thing. This book covers what NOT to say and helps to find the right words. It also considers the child’s age and developmental level of understanding. I really appreciated the section that covers myths about children and grief. There are a few classroom activities that are suggested as well. It specifically talks about how to handle the sudden death of a student, helping a student grieve the death of a sibling, handling an anticipated death, and suicide. I really benefited from the ways of coping and forming a support group section.
Ashley Amely, School Counselor

Self-Harm and Self-Injury: When Emotional Pain Becomes Physical

In 15-Minute Focus: Self-Harm and Self-Injury: When Emotional Pain Becomes Physical, author Dr. Leigh Bagwell offers an in-depth look at the who, what, and why of self-harm; more accurately called nonsuicidal self-injury (NSSI).

Students today face stressors on an unprecedented scale. From unstable world events to unsteady family situations, the external and internal pressures they experience can become overwhelming, and some turn to self-harm (NSSI) as a means to cope. On the outside, such behavior confuses and disturbs many people, even the teachers and parents who are closest to students. This book provides the research and perspective adults need to help kids who turn to NSSI as a means of dealing with their distress.

In this book, you’ll discover:

  • Types of NSSI behavior, including cutting, biting, hair pulling, and bruising
  • The relationship between self-harm (NSSI) and suicidal ideation
  • Signs and symptoms of NSSI beyond wounds and scars
  • Myths and truths about NSSI
  • Protocols for schools to follow when NSSI is suspected
  • How parents and schools can partner to help students in need

This book features stories from students as they explain NSSI from their experiences, giving adults an inside look into the lives of those who struggle with this behavior. Also included are online resources that counselors and teachers can utilize, including infographics, NSSI assessments, and calming behaviors for use in place of self-harm.

Written by Dr. Leigh Bagwell

Click to learn more about Leigh and her books.

Click on the icon of a retailer below to order the book

For Bulk Orders, please call us toll-free at 866-318-6294. Receive 10% off for 30-49 copies ordered, and 15% off for 50+ copies ordered.

The resources in this book are available for you as a digital download! To download the resources click the link below and enter in the code provided in your book.

This book is a great resource for social workers and counselors, teachers, admin, and parents. It covers many areas important to this topic including what it is, common myths, who is at risk, replacement strategies, what teachers and admin can do, a school protocol flowchart, and so much more. I really like the language used in this book and how the information is represented. It makes explaining what to do, what to look at for, and what is and isn’t self-harm, easy to relay. Especially to those who don’t know a lot about it, or who work closely with the student.
Kylie Parpart, Social Worker

Parents of teens, you should read this! There are SO many reasons that individuals turn to self-harm. Some are easier to understand that others. Stress is a perception, and we all feel it (and react) differently. This book helps you navigate how to help those you love and care about as they navigate self-harm and potentially self-injury. These tools help you learn how to separate self-harm from suicidal ideation. The language is gentle & easy to comprehend. If more parents used this book it may be easier to support a teen who struggles with self-harm.
Stephanie Heitkemper, Counselor

Suicide: Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention

In 15-Minute Focus: Suicide: Prevention, Intervention, and Postvention, Dr. Melisa Marsh gives school counselors and educators a step-by-step primer on how to navigate the death of a student or staff member by suicide.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide is the second leading cause of death for individuals ages ten to thirty-four. This statistic underscores the impact suicide can have on our schools. It can shatter a school community and leave students and staff feeling helpless, angry, and confused. In this book, Marsh unpacks the stigma and data associated with suicide, and provides school counselors, educators, and administrators with ways to implement a suicide-safer community.

What you’ll get:

  • Specific language to use when talking about suicide
  • Strategies for implementing suicide prevention, suicide intervention, and suicide postvention programs
  • Research and data to help communicate risk factors
  • Ways to support students in a virtual environment
  • Over 20 pages of invaluable templates, including safety plans, email scripts, assessments, checklists, and more!

The death of a student or staff member by suicide is something no school wishes to navigate, but Marsh gives the tools needed to face these hard and challenging situations with understanding and hope.

Written by Dr. Melisa Marsh

Click to learn more about Melisa and her books.

Click on the icon of a retailer below to order the book

For Bulk Orders, please call us toll-free at 866-318-6294. Receive 10% off for 30-49 copies ordered, and 15% off for 50+ copies ordered.

The resources in this book are available for you as a digital download! To download the resources click the link below and enter in the code provided in your book.

The cool thing about this book is that it is not just for school counselors or therapists. It is actually very much administrator focused. This book even has how to handle suicide in a virtual environment. Very relevant and fresh!
Melanie Acker, LPC

Trauma and Adverse Childhood Experiences

In 15-Minute Focus: Trauma and Adverse Childhood Experiences, Dr. Melissa Louvar Reeves gives counselors and educators a primer on how to support students who have experienced trauma.

Trauma interferes with the executive functions required to be successful in the classroom; and it impacts our ability to trust our environment and others. In this book, Reeves explains trauma and the overlap with anxiety, and provides understanding for behaviors associated with trauma and why they occur, along with a variety of strategies for school mental health professionals, educators, and administrators.

What you’ll get:

  • Identification of the different types of stress and symptoms that accompany trauma exposure
  • Explanation of commonalities between externalizing disorders and trauma and stressor related disorders
  • Practical strategies for school mental health professionals, educators, administrators, and parents
  • Curated list of resources, including organizations, training, curriculum, books, and more!

This guide will provide school counselors, educators, and administrators with an increased understanding regarding trauma and effective interventions to provide better supports that facilitate growth and achievement in all areas of life.

Reeves, Melissa

Written by Dr. Melissa A. Louvar Reeves

Click to learn more about Melissa and her books.

Click on the icon of a retailer below to order the book

For Bulk Orders, please call us toll-free at 866-318-6294. Receive 10% off for 30-49 copies ordered, and 15% off for 50+ copies ordered.

The resources in this book are available for you as a digital download! To download the resources click the link below and enter in the code provided in your book.

Trauma is something we all experience but many educators are just learning about what trauma is and how it effects learning. I found this book to be a quick, but good read of what trauma and ACES are. I loved how it took you through what you could do to improve the culture of the school community from classroom structure to interventions and response. The points to consider also allow you to evaluate your own processes and procedures. I highly recommend.
Carol Miller, School Counselor

A must have for anyone working with someone who struggles with trauma. Excellent resource and easy to read. I highly recommend this series and think you will soon find the pages being worn from so much use. I have already let a teacher borrow my copy.
Stephanie Holloway, Licensed Specialist Clinical Social Worker and Registered Play Therapist-Supervisor

15-Minute Counseling Techniques that Work

What You Didn’t Learn in Grad School

 

The counselor is not the strategy. The counselor teaches strategies.

As counselors, we spend our days helping kids. Kids come to us with a variety of problems, searching for answers. They want us to listen. And they need us to give them solutions for the issues they are facing.

While these solutions may work temporarily, we really never help kids until we give them tools—or techniques—to manage thoughts and feelings on their own. Our job is not to do it for them. Our job is to teach them how to do it themselves! This is the greatest gift we can give.

In 15-Minute Counseling Techniques, Allison Edwards provides tools to use in individual or group counseling sessions with children in grades K–12. Children will learn how to calm their mind and body with Square Breathing, let go of negative thoughts by Changing the Channel, identify their unique gifts by creating a “What I’m Good At” Jar, and so much more.

The techniques in this book will help children feel empowered to face everyday challenges and equipped to manage their stress and emotions. And, best of all, you will give them the confidence they need to handle challenges throughout their lives.

Click here for more information about 15-Minute Counseling Techniques that Work