How to Rock a Partnership with Your Librarian: Bibliotherapy


Our school librarian is always thinking of creative ideas to help our students.
Not only is she on instagram, twitter, facebook, snapchat, and the blogosphere...
but also she has recently reached out to our school counseling department and mental health counselor to partner with us to provide books that could help students. 
 
While bibliotherapy isn't a complete replacement for actual therapy,
it can help students feel like they're not alone or put words to something they've been feeling in isolation. 
With our new monthly Morning Workshops for students, we will focus on many of the topics these books will present. For example, our first workshop will be focused on stress management, a high need of our students based on a needs assessment. 

By partnering with our librarian, we will be able to offer a  more comprehensive list of resources to our students,  so they can further explore these topics on their own. Specifically, when I was running a grief group, my librarian set up a table of books for students to check out (fiction and non-fiction), so they could easily snag them and check them out. (If you need more resources for when grief hits your school, check out my Crisis Bucket and Grief Conversation Kites and a blog post on how I use them.)

“Bibliotherapy can serve as an unobtrusive, non-threatening medium to help adolescents relieve their stress and increase their coping skills,” write Heidi L. Tussing and Deborah P. Valentine in their 2001 article “Helping Adolescents Cope with the Mental Illness of a Parent through Bibliotherapy,” published in Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal. Tussing and Valentine write: “They (readers) gain insight, on the problem-solving and coping skills of the characters, subsequently applying this learning to their own lives.”

Read this article for recommendations of books to add to your collection. 

What books do you use in high school counseling or what do you recommend students be reading in relationship to mental health?

(Picture taken from: SLJ Article)

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