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Lower Merion School District


School Counseling Curriculum

The LMSD guidance curriculum is a cornerstone of our k-12 School Counseling Program. Our School Counseling Program utilizes best practices and is at the forefront of current professional trends. Current trends in School Counseling suggests that the implementation of the guidance curriculum ties the integral role of school counselor to the success of the District's mission. The guidance curriculum supports the mission of LMSD by promoting student achievement and diversity and teaching students how to adapt to a rapidly changing world.

There are common elements of the curriculum that span the elementary, middle, and high school Programs. At each level the curriculum is composed of lessons designed to teach children specific skills that are developmentally appropriate. School counselors routinely teach the developmental lessons in a classroom setting. There are three primary benefits of school counselors teaching in a classroom setting. Counselors learn your child's strengths and weaknesses as learner, the nature of their peer relationships, and get to know their unique qualities. Second, students learn competency-based skills in the personal-social, academic, and career exploration domains. Finally, classroom instruction is an efficient way to leverage counselors' time and for all students to be taught systematically.

Here are some examples of the skills taught through developmental guidance lessons at each level.


  • Empathy building including listening and recognizing other's feelings
  • Impulse control such as using breathing and other self-calming strategies
  • The steps toward problem solving like brainstorming and choosing a solution

Middle School

  • Understanding the Cycle of Bullying - the bully, victim, and the bystander
  • Sexual Harassment Prevention strategies like assertive communication
  • Self-discovery through Naviance including a learning styles inventory

High School

  • Self-discovery through Naviance using the Career Interest Inventories
  • Understanding standardized testing, mid-term and final preparation, and importance of transcript and GPA
  • College readiness skills like budgeting time and adjusting to more independence