At Columbus School for Girls, we take a holistic approach to wellness and tend to the needs of the whole child. We strive to empower each student to develop the skills and strategies necessary to realize her unique academic, physical, emotional, and social potential. The wellness program at CSG empowers girls to strive for balance and wellness through an emphasis on social, emotional, and physical health programming and outreach.
Social wellness is taught and fostered at CSG to help our girls develop and maintain a strong network of support and relationships that are based on interdependence, mutual trust, and respect. These crucial social skills are built through the following initiatives and programs:
- Ruling Our eXperiences (ROX) – ROX is a program facilitated by CSG school counselors that provides evidence-based empowerment programming for girls. The program helps girls develop the skills to deal with issues including bullying and relational aggression, healthy dating and relationships, cyberbullying, and navigating social media, body image and the media, and leadership development for girls.
- Counselor Classroom Visits –The school counselor for the PYC and Lower School regularly visits the classrooms through Form V as part of the health curriculum. The Middle and Upper School counselor delivers programs in the classroom and in advisories to cover topics including, but not limited to, stress management, interpersonal communication skills, developing and maintaining friendships, cyber safety and responsibility, diversity, and inclusion.
- Big/Little Sis Program – The Big/Little Sis program at CSG is a unique program wherein the girls get assigned a “big sis” during Form I and girls become a big sis in Form VII. The program allows girls to both have a mentor and be a mentor. Some examples of big/little sis programs throughout the year are the ice cream social, Hispanic Heritage month dance, leaves of thankfulness, and valentine exchange.
- Clubs – Middle and Upper School students have the opportunity to participate in a variety of clubs based on their interests. Clubs offer the opportunity for girls to explore shared interests with their peers across grade levels.
- Parent Education Events and Parent Coffees – The faculty at CSG regularly host parents for education events wherein parents can stay abreast of the most current practices to help promote wellness for their daughters. Some examples of parent education topics include the ins and outs of social media, girl drama and female friendships, and understanding standardized testing.
- School Dances and Friday Night Association – Students at CSG regularly have the opportunity to participate in school dances starting in Form VII in collaboration with Columbus Academy, The Wellington Schoo,l and St. Charles. In Form VI, students participate in Friday Night Association starting in February. These dances provide key social opportunities to interact with classmates and peers from the community.
- Quarter Classes – Quarter classes in the Middle School are designed to support girls in the development of key skills. Some quarter classes involve social wellness including service and leadership.
- CSG Traditions – CSG has numerous traditions which encourage the social development and sense of community for our girls. Some of these traditions include Form VIII tea, Scholarship Walk, Holiday Dinner, Freshman Block Party, Holiday Bizarre and Halloween parade.
- Red Outs – Red Outs are hosted by the athletic department and encourage students, faculty, and parents to attend big sporting events and wear red. This provides a fun time for the school community to come together in support of the Unicorns.
- Health Curriculum – Our comprehensive health curriculum covers various aspects of social health and wellness.
Emotional wellness programming and education at CSG aims to help our students identify, express, and manage a range of feelings. In support of this goal, CSG provides the following programs and opportunities for our students:
- Individual Counseling – CSG provides students with access to two full-time, licensed counselors. Our counselors support students and families with a variety of topics and work from a Solution-Focused Brief Therapy Framework. Relaxation and mindfulness techniques are taught to students throughout the curriculum during advisory and drama class.
- Counseling Support Groups – Small group counseling sessions are facilitated by our school counselors to help students learn how to identify and appropriately express their feelings. Groups are formed throughout the year based on needs. Examples of groups that have formed at CSG include a divorce and family separation support group and a grief support group.
- Stress Management – Strategies to manage stress are taught to students through the advisory curriculum in Forms VIII-XII. Students learn the sources of their stress and healthy ways to manage their stress.
- Faculty Professional Development – Our faculty regularly receives professional development to learn how to best promote emotional health in our students. In past years, our faculty has received professional development on mindfulness, creating balance for students, signs of depression, and executive functioning.
- Health Curriculum – Our comprehensive health curriculum covers various aspects of emotional health and wellness.
Physical wellness is approached holistically at CSG and focuses on nutrition and physical exercise. Students are exposed to a variety of fitness and physical wellness offerings including:
- Health and Physical Education Curriculum – Our comprehensive health and Physical Education curricula cover various aspects of physical health and wellness.
- Unicorn Athletics – Students can participate in a variety of organized sports opportunities from Form II through Form XII.
- Yoga – Students participate in yoga class as part of their Physical Education class. Middle School students can also participate in free after-school yoga classes.
- Strength and Conditioning – Students have the opportunity to participate in strength and conditioning training after school twice a week for athletes that are out of season and three times a week for in-season athletes.
- School-wide Health Observances – The Wellness Task Force at CSG coordinates school-wide health observances including Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Students learn about prevention and treatment of many physical conditions during these observances.
- Nutrition and Dining – CSG provides food and beverage choices that exceed nutrition recommendations of the U.S. Dietary Guidelines and students have access to a variety of nutritious and appealing food and drink choices. CSG also provides a clean, safe, and pleasant dining experience for students and faculty.
CSG encourages girls and young women to discover their distinctive potential and their unique future in our global and dynamic world. To meet this goal, we provide a variety of academic and college/career support for our students including:
- Advisory – Students begin participating in advisory in Form VI and continue through Form XII. Students’ advisors help to guide them throughout their academic career, providing them with crucial feedback and supporting them as they build their academic portfolio.
- Freshman Transition Program – The transition from Middle School to Upper School presents a big change for students. The freshman transition program at CSG supports students during this crucial time by providing them with key strategies for studying, organization, test-taking, stress management, and executive functioning.
- Middle School Transition – At the end of Form V, students spend a day in the Middle School to give them a better understanding of the Middle School experience. The transition to Middle School becomes less intimidating as Form V students have the opportunity to shadow and learn from the current Form VI students.
- Career Scene Investigation – Middle School students can participate in the Career Scene Investigation program weekly. Students are presented with clues about different careers including information about the work environment, education requirements, average salary, among other career topics, and they can guess from a variety of choices which career matches the clues.
- College Counseling – College Counseling at CSG is a thoughtful, comprehensive program that begins with an evening parent-information session in Form IX and continues through Form XII with intensive counseling of students and their families. It is a highly individualized process where each girl, with the help of the college counselor, searches to find the right match for college.
- Test Anxiety Workshops – Students in Forms VIII-XII participate in a test anxiety workshop to learn skills and strategies to curb any anxiety and stress they experience before an exam.
- Learning Specialists – Learning specialists work at each division level to help our students learn key strategies for executive functioning, studying, test taking, and organization.
The mission of the Wellness Task Force is to promote and support organizational and individual wellness among members of the CSG community. It aims to create and maintain a community that encourages a healthy and well-balanced lifestyle through positive school climate and collegial support. The 10-member team includes representation from various departments and parent liaisons. This group, along with the Health, Physical Education, and Support Services departments, spearheads many of our wellness initiatives.