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Think First

ThinkingCap.pngTHINK FIRST

Think First is a teacher and parent led program aimed at teaching important social and emotional skills in all grades, and alcohol and drug resistance education for 4th and 5th grade students.

In Kindergarten through 2nd grade the Think First curriculum consists of the newly updated, state approved program, "Second Step" program published by Committee for Children. Those who have taught this curriculum in previous years at Wagner Ranch will recognize the continued focus on teaching children the important social skills of identifying feelings, managing strong emotions, solving problems, and getting along with others. The ten weekly lessons, taught by parent volunteers, are filled with age appropriate activities to keep children engaged and help them practice their skills. New this year to the curriculum is a unit aimed at building skills for learning, such as listening and staying on task. These five lessons are taught by the classroom teacher at the start of the school year and set the stage for future academic success, as well a strong foundation for the later parent-lead Second Step lessons.

In grades 3-5 the Think First curriculum consists of the bullying prevention program, "Steps to Respect" program, which builds upon the skills learned in the younger grades. The Steps to Respect program teaches students to recognize, refuse and report bullying, be assertive, and build friendships. The Steps to Respect lessons provide important skills and tools to help kids feel safe and supported by the adults around them.

The 4th and 5th grades additionally receive drug, alcohol and tobacco prevention education in the spring. The video-based program provides non-judgmental information on the effects of drugs, alcohol, and tobacco on the mind and body. Students are also taught skills for learning to deal with peer pressure.

At Wagner Ranch, trained parent volunteers teach Think First lessons for ten weeks between October and February, with the support of the classroom teacher. All teachers, specialists, aides, and administrators are trained to help students apply the lessons and strategies to their daily activities. Our school district provides high-quality teaching materials produced by Committee for Children, "a nonprofit working globally to prevent bullying, violence, and child abuse."

If you would like to volunteer to be a classroom Think First instructor please sign up at Jump Start, or contact Diane Petek.

Think First Internet Links and Resources

Concepts and Objectives: The concepts and objectives of each lesson are outlined