Good People Everywhere

Recently one of the neighborhoods near our school had a sad incident happen.  Luckily nobody was hurt but the community is still dealing with the issue. Many of our students were/are scared and worried about what had happened. I decided to read “Good People Everywhere” by Lynea Gillen and  is  Mom’s Choice Award recipient. I had the opportunity to talk with Lynea in a Taxi while at a Yoga Retreat. She offered me this book after I discussed with her some of the amazing things happening at Edmunds elementary. Lynea told me her professional story as well as the story of the book. Lynea wrote this book after 9/11 happened in NYC. Her students at the school that she was a school counselor for were very sad and viewing the world in a very negative way. They thought negative thoughts about other people and were forgetting about all the good in their lives. This book does exactly that! It reminds students of all the amazing people everyday in our lives. Whether it is the farmers who grow our food, the musciians who make us happy through song or the family members who are always there for us.
So far the students at Edmunds have really enjoyed this book as well as the activities she includes in the back of the book.

Good people everywhere book_



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Posted by on March 30, 2015 in Uncategorized


October Newsletter

Wondering what’s going on at Edmunds Elementary?

In Counseling we move into fall with safety! During the month of October we finish up our friendship section of counseling and move right into personal safety. With the cold weather coming in Iowa it is important for our students to know how to protect themselves and stay safe. Our 3rd-5th graders get a visit from YESS, the Youth Emergency Shelter and Services. Click to go to YESS website to learn more!

They teach our students about the safe place’s in their neighborhood which is Caseys, Quicktrips, Firestations, YMCA’s, Smokey Row, and many other places other than Edmunds that they can go to in order to reach YESS for help when they do not feel safe or their family needs help. K-2nd grade are also learning about personal safety. We watch a wonderful program called Safe Side Super Chick that explains how to be safe with different types of adults. There are “Don’t Know’s”, “Kinda-Knows” and “Safe Adults”. We discuss what’s okay to do with each of these different adults.

Here is a youtube clip that shows a sample of what our kids learn from safeside superchick.

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Posted by on October 9, 2014 in Uncategorized


New School Year at Edmunds

There are lots of new and exciting things going on at Edmunds this year. We have began our yoga4classroom curriculum. Day one was just finished! We are using Lisa Flynn’s Yoga4classroom curriculum, we borrowed that and created it specifically for Edmunds elementary. Here is the website for the yoga4classroom:   

It has only been one week but Edmunds has been very busy starting out the school year on the right foot. Here are some pictures from open house last week.

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Students got to meet their new teachers, see their new rooms, sign up for boyscouts and other fun groups, and get some FREE BOOKS! 

It has been a great start to whats looking like an exciting and mindful year!



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Posted by on August 18, 2014 in Uncategorized


Feburary at Edmunds Elementary

At lunch time with the counselor, we talked about treating one another nicely as friends even if we arent best friends. We talked about how since we were in the same school we were part of a team like when the big kids play on basketball and volleyball teams. We decided to make a chant and put our hands/milks together! Image

This goes right along with our unit. We are learning about bullying and bully prevention at Edmunds. We discuss what exactly bullying is. Bullying is when someone hurts someone emotionally or physically over and over again on purpose and when its one-sided (they have more power over that person).  We talk about how someone may be mean to us but its not bullying….yet. They are choosing to partake in bullying behavior.

Through all the grades we are discussing how bullying affects one another. What bullying looks like and how we can all prevent it. We discuss how it feels to be bullied and how we need to accept one another instead of make fun and pick on one another. In the upper grades we discuss what a bystander is and how we can respond when someone is taking part in bullying behaviors.

How to Promote Tolerance and Respect in Young Children

How to help your child be nonviolent:

1. Make your child feel special, safe, and loved. Don’t be sparing with words of praise. A loved child learns to love.

  2. Intervene when you hear or see intolerant behavior. Don’t be punitive — help your child learn healthier ways to interact with others.

   3. Use positive comments to shape and reinforce your child’s behavior. Avoid giving instruction using “no” (such as “Don’t do that”). Offering helpful alternatives (“Be gentle with your brother”) will be more productive.

    4. Model tolerance (accepting each other) and respect. Your child will learn to reach out and be sensitive and respectful of others by watching how you discuss, relate to, and value other people.

Bullying and bullying behavior is a serious issue, if you believe your student is being a bully or is being bullied please contact the school and talk with someone about this issue. Please do not tell your child to attack back or handle it on their own, let them know the school supports all our students and will help with the situation.

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Posted by on February 18, 2014 in Uncategorized


On Monday October 7th Edmunds participated in a movement that many other schools in Des Moines and many other schools in the nation were apart of. To show our support to stop bullying, most of the children and staff wore blue! It was a sea of blue at Edmunds!!!  STOMP OUT BULLYING is a movement to end bullying in all schools, elementary to high school. Below are some pictures and essays the students of Edmunds elementary made to support STOMPING OUT BULLYING. In counseling lessons during we discuss the prevalence of bullying and how to act when being bullied. We talk about how we stop, talk, and then walk. We discuss using adults to help us when we are being bullied. We talk about how bullies can change and how we should surround ourselves with people who are making good choices and treating others with respect.


Parents play a key role in preventing and responding to bullying. If you know or suspect that your child is involved in bullying, there are several resources that may help.

  • Recognize the warning signs that your child is involved in bullying. They could be being bullied, bullying others, or witnessing bullying.  Although these signs could signal other issues, you should talk to your child if they display any sort of behavioral or emotional changes.  Many times kids won’t ask for help, so it is important to know what to look for. If your child is at immediate risk of harming himself or others, get help right away.
  • Learn what bullying is and what it is not. Understanding what bullying is is the first step in forming a plan to prevent or respond to bullying with your child. Many behaviors that look like bullying may be just as serious, but may require different response strategies.  You can also learn about:
  • Cyberbullying (Internet bullying or online bullying) often requires different strategies than in-person bullying.  Learn how to work with your kids to prevent cyberbullying and how to respond when it occurs.
  • Utilize tips and tools to talk to your child about bullying. Opening lines of communication before your child is involved in bullying makes it easier for them to tell you when something happens. It is also important to work with a school to help prevent bullying before it starts.
  • If you know or suspect bullying has occurred, learn how to find out what has happened with your child. Understanding what has happened can also help in communicating with school or community officials about the situation.
  • If you have determined bullying has occurred, learn how you and school or community officials can work together to support your child, whether they were bulliedbullied others, or witnessed bullying.  Learn also about considerations for specific groups.
  • If bullying is occurring at school, learn about what your state requires schools to do in your state’s anti-bullying law. Learn also about federal laws that require schools to address harassment based on race, color, national origin, sex, and disabilities and ways to report situations that have not been adequately addressed to the U.S. Departments of Education and Justice.
  • If you have worked with your child and your school and need additional assistance, find resources to help address the situation





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Posted by on October 10, 2013 in Uncategorized


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During counseling time Edmunds students are learning about how to be a good friend. Each grade has separate lessons but the entire school is learning how to be a good friend and the skills that go into being a friend. These skills are trust, cooperation, teamwork, not gossiping, sharing, being kind, being clear when talking, and doing the right thing. At Edmunds we are working hard on team work and each person doing their job in the friendship.

In first grade we read about a little fish named Swimmy………….


Here is the book we are reading! You can get this at your local library or online for cheap!The first graders learn that working together is better than being alone and by yourself. They learn that each person has a job to do and when each person does their job then everything works out best for the group.


Here is an example of our fish we colored and while we talked about the story we learned that whenever we saw a fish or saw a fish symbol we could think about teamwork and working together.  Normally we would have used all of our class fish and created a big fish which happens in the book, but we did not have time to do that.


In second grade, we worked in groups to create silly friendship monsters. Each student was given a particular part of the monster to make and together they created the monster with their groups.

Here are the finished products from our second graders!


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Posted by on September 27, 2013 in Uncategorized


Culture Fair

Edmunds just had its Culture Fair. We had a fantastic turnout of students, friends, and family members. We had over 600 people attend this event!  The teachers, students and staff members spent a lot of time preparing for this special occasion. 


Here is a quick photo of the gym. We ran out of chairs (and almost space). This is good news for us at Edmunds, we love the support that the family and friends give to our students!



Mr. Borzo graced us with a candid picture of him in his cultural garb (clothes).


It was a late night but everyone did a fantastic job and it was a wonderful event to kickoff an exciting year!

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Posted by on September 27, 2013 in Uncategorized


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New Year At Edmunds

Its a new year at Edmunds! A new building, new principal, new school counselor, new teachers, and new students! The air is buzzing with all the newness around the school! This is a blog written by me Mr.Houser the school counselor. I will update this with different lessons we are going over in the classrooms among other exciting news throughout the school!

First I would like to introduce myself! My name is Jory Houser I was born and raised in south central Iowa. I just finished up my master degree in school counseling from The University of Northern Iowa. I am pumped to be the school counselor here at Edmunds Elementary, home of the Wildcats! At UNI (university of northern Iowa) we were called the panthers so it is an easy switch from panther to wildcat

Some things about me:

-I love to play basketball and run

-I like to read

-I try to play guitar (still learning)

-I love to travel

-I love to drink coffee

I will update this again soon! Thanks for your time! Continue to encourage your child to read at home and talk about school at home. It is helpful when your child hears that you want to know about school. Tell them how important schooling is and get excited about the things they are excited about in school!  Until next time!

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Posted by on July 12, 2011 in Uncategorized