Summer Safety Plans

Do you have specific students who cross your mind during the summer? You know… the students who truly need the supportive relationships they have with adults in the building and friends around them. Some of these students also thrive in the structure and routines of school that will be gone during the summer. While we are not and definitely cannot be “saviors” to these students, we can help to prepare them for the summer with skills and plans that will help them face difficult situations or feelings. Creating summer safety plans with these students can help them feel empowered to handle difficult things that may come their way during those summer months.

Summer Safety Plans

Identify Safe People

Make a list of adults who students can reach out to if they need help over the summer. Think of safe neighbors or close relatives that the students can call or visit when hard situations come up. These can also include family members or friends the student can call just to talk if they live far away, but try to include people who are close by in case the student needs immediate help.

Identify Safe Locations

Identify places where the student feels safe. This might be a place in the home or a neighborhood friend’s house. Write down the location and address if applicable (and age-appropriate).

Highlight Tried and True Coping Skills

Have the student verbalize potentially difficult situations that may arise during the summer. Then, review coping skills that the student can employ when these do arise. Make a list of the situations and the coping skills the students can use right on the safety plan.

Draft a Summer Routine

For your students who thrive in the routines of school, make a summer schedule. Identify self care routines like getting dressed, eating breakfast, and going to bed at an appropriate time. Have your student make a list of safe activities that they enjoy so they have a bank of ideas during the summer.

Final Thoughts

Review the safety plan with your student’s caregiver. They will likely have some additional ideas for safe people that the students can count on during the summer. Go over the coping skills with them as well so they can reinforce and support the student when those hard things come up.

Do you make summer safety plans with your students? You can find the one pictured above in The Spark Free Resource Library.

How else do you prepare your students for the summer? Next up, I’ll share about making coping toolboxes for students to take home and use over the summer!

Work with the students on your school counseling caseload in individual counseling or small group counseling to create summer safety plans. Identify supportive people, safe locations, and tried and true coping skills to help your students cope with difficult feelings and situations over the summer.

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