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Jeffco Strengths

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practicing strength at home

Jeffco Public Schools is committed to keeping families and the Jeffco community connected, calm and strong. Each month we will focus on a new theme and share new ways to practice strength at home through family activities and resources.

Jeffco Public schools has partnered with Sources of Strength to help Jeffco families through these trying times. Sources of Strength is a public health program that focuses on promoting mental health and building protective factors that increase connection, coping, resiliency, and wellness. This in turn can help prevent suicide, violence, bullying, substance abuse and so much more.

We have compiled a series of resources for you: check-ins and conversation starters, activities for exploring emotions, and practices for you and for the members in your household to find pathways to calm, coping, and connection.

SEPTEMBER: CONNECTION

What is Connection?

Who do you “Connect” with most in your life? This month we are focusing on positive friends and mentors. Positive friends lift us up, make us laugh, are honest with us, and are there for us when we need them. A mentor is an experienced person who shares their insight to help guide us, and help us draw on our own strengths to be the best version of ourselves.

September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

All month, mental health advocates, prevention organizations, survivors, allies, and community members unite to promote suicide prevention awareness.

STEPS TO CONNECTION

TAKE ACTION

  • Take a virtual class - sign up for a local, virtual and often times free QPR suicide gatekeeper training. Learn the warning signs, know what do do, and how to help.

  • Walk to Fight Suicide - join a local community, campus, or overnight walk.

  • Take 5 to Save Lives - by taking 5 minutes to get involved and become informed, you will be part of a world-wide movement to save lives.

Healthy Activities Calendar

In the calendar below you will find conversation prompts and activities centered around “Connection”. These are resources for your student(s) and those in your home to complete together to promote strength and connection.

Each activity includes:

  • A conversation prompt to discuss over a meal, hang out session, on a walk, etc.
  • An activity so the people in your home can engage with strength together.
  • A daily gratitude practice.

Daily Activities Checklist

Use this handy Daily Activities Checklist to build connection through family, mentors, and friends through September.

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Tips for Strength-Based Conversations

Have fun!
We know our brains work better when they are positive rather than negative, neutral, or stressed. We also know that we learn more through play. Games, music, and laughter are essential ingredients for our mental health and wellness. Not because we are avoiding hard things and difficult conversations, but because we are preparing for them. When we laugh and play, we connect, and relational connections will build up our mental health.

 

When hard things happen, honor and acknowledge them, and then turn towards your strengths.

We encourage you to tell the truth about what is actually happening, even if it’s hard. But make sure that you spend the majority of your time in those conversations, not just focused on the hard, but talking about what helps. When talking about an obstacle or a challenge, try to focus 10% of the story on what hurts, and 90% of the story on what helps! This allows us to move through difficulty and models healthy strategies for others.

 

As the adult in your home, please share, but don’t overshare.

If you are experiencing a lot of BIG emotions, or if you are struggling with your physical or mental health, we want to encourage you to share those stories with your siblings or friends, and in case of an emergency, with medical and mental health professionals.

 

Participate fully.

If there is an activity, question, or challenge, it’s not just for your kids, it’s for you too! Sources of Strength is for everyone. You don’t need to teach anything, these aren’t tasks for you to complete, but they are tools to help you AND your kids calm, cope, and connect during this time.

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