Megan Knoster, MSW, LICSW
WMS School Adjustment Counselor
Welcome to my webpage!! This is my third year as Winthrop Middle School's Adjustment Counselor, however I have worked in the Winthrop community for the past 8 years as a mental health therapist, group work facilitator, youth mentor, program director and consultant. I graduated from Boston University School of Social work with my Masters in Social Work, hold my independent social work license (LICSW), and also have my school adjustment counseling license. Additionally, I am a certified yoga instructor for children and adolescents and a DoTERRA Wellness Advocate. In my free time you can find me running, rock climbing, practicing yoga, or hanging by some sort of body of water!
It's been an exciting few years for WMS- we continue to strive towards promoting social, emotional and academic health through unique and exciting ways: from our annual wellness fair, to beautifying our school with kindness rocks, to providing enriching clubs, curricula and activities such as Allies Club and Girls on the Run, our school places a strong emphasis on holistic student health and wellness.
On this website you will find Middle School Adjustment Counseling updates and announcements, as well as resources and helpful information - scroll away!!
What's Happening In the Counseling Department??
Girls on the Run Heart and Sole is BACK!!! Registration for the 2020 season begins January 22 through February 11. Registration is run on a LOTTERY registration as opposed to a first come, first served registration. Girls on the Run does this so every girl has an equitable opportunity to participate.
If you/your student would like to participate in future girls on the run activities, please contact Miss Knoster, and/or feel free to check the website below and register on January 22nd!!
Season begins March 23rd and practices will take place on Mondays and Wednesdays 4:00-5:30pm.
Girls on the Run - Heart and Sole
This year we are placing a huge emphasis on social emotional learning so that we can support and empower our students in effectively applying the knowledge, attitudes, and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions. Students who receive adjustment counseling services will engage in activities and interventions that focus on the core competencies of social emotional learning. To learn more, click the link below!
Miss Knoster will be continuing the tradition of visiting classrooms to promote social emotional learning and mental health awareness. Throughout the course of this school year, students will continue to have the opportunity to learn about basic education regarding mental health (like anxiety and depression), and will engage in a variety of activities, exercises, and lessons regarding building self awareness, creating a positive self identity, managing difficult emotions, creating and maintaining healthy relationships, engaging in safe decision making and building social awareness skills. Additionally, students will have opportunities to engage in group lessons involving yoga, mindful movement, meditation and other forms of mindfulness.
On Friday, April 17th, Winthrop Middle School will host its third annual Wellness Fair. The fair provides our student community with opportunities to learn about mental health, social emotional well-being, community resources, positive extracurricular activities, nutrition and more! When we think about the term “wellness”, something that comes to mind is the holistic health and well-being of our students.
Winthrop Middle School Wellness Fair
On Thursday, November 14th, all students in the middle school and high school (grades 6-12) attended (separate) assemblies to promote student mental health and awareness! Students were provided with the opportunity to engage in education, awareness building, and activities to promote building a positive school culture and healthy connections throughout the school community.
Check out the parent/guardian brochure about the Start with Hello Assembly here!
Winthrop Middle School has been approved by the Chef Ann Foundation grant in our endeavor to get a salad bar! We currently have a school fundraising website through the Whole Kids Foundation and United Fresh Start Foundation. Check it out here!
Help WMS get a salad bar from Whole Foods!
Continuing his visits on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays is Murphy, the Therapy Dog! His role will be to provide emotional/mental health support as well as incentivize programming for our student community. Murphy works out of the MINDeaze classroom, which is a partnership between Winthrop Middle School and North Suffolk Mental Health Association!
MassSTART would like to announce that they have recently been awarded a 5-year grant which has allowed them the opportunity to re-brand under the new name of MINDeaze! MIND stands for “Moving in a New Direction” which represents the mission of the program, which aims to prevent substance use, community violence, and delinquent behavior.
On the outside, MINDeaze will look nearly identical to MassSTART but there are some programmatic-level changes which won’t affect the work that they do in achieving their overall goal of promoting student’s overall positive development and academic achievement. Check out our new brochure and website!
MINDeaze Program Coordinator
North Suffolk Mental Health Association
No matter what you are going through, you are not alone! Sometimes the most difficult step is figuring out where to start. This list in the link above may be able to help ease that first step to getting the support that you are looking for.
Here are some additional resources in the below links!:
Check out this list of cool smartphone apps that you and your student can download to promote your student's social emotional wellbeing!
Suicide has become one of the major leading causes of death in school-aged youth. However, suicide is preventable. There are resources, support and research available so that we can all be prepared and empowered to take the correct actions and help youth before they engage in behavior with irreversible consequences.
Here is some helpful information to empower caregivers to supporting their students that struggle with anxiety.
The Allies Club offers students the opportunity to gather to discuss social issues and plan activities related to diversity and being a supportive friend. Click the link to find out more information!!
It's never too early to start thinking about your student's out of school time. If you're looking for a place to start, check out this link with information about summer camps, day programs and after school opportunities!
Climbing and Adaptive Climbing Experiences for Students
Looking for something to do? Try this list of activities. Before you know it, the whole "I'm bored" catchphrase will be a thing of the past!