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  Preparing your Group Counseling Plan With Children and Adolescents gives you an opportunity to apply what you are learning to situations you will encounter in clinical practice. Review the Scoring Guide before preparing and submitting your assignment. For this assignment, you will develop two group counseling plans that can be used in your Middle Valley Counseling Proposal: one for children and one for adolescents. As described in this unit’s videos, many counseling groups for young people are growth-oriented groups—each individual’s growth and development is the focus. Members of the group may have symptoms of disorders, but a group can help individuals make changes more quickly by providing encouragement and chances to practice new behaviors. First, you will describe a prototypical group member for each of the counseling groups you will be proposing. One background sketch should be for a child client; one should be for an adolescent client. Your hypothetical child client is a prospective member of your child counseling group. Your hypothetical adolescent client is a prospective member of your adolescent counseling group. Second, you will design a counseling group that would benefit each of these clients (see Counseling Children pages 605–606 for examples of how counselors work with groups of different ages). Each of your two group proposals will succinctly address the following: Prototypical Group Member: Summarize the background sketch for one of your group members, including developmental, temperamental, and academic information. Additionally, include the reason for referral to the group and your preliminary diagnosis. Client’s Ecosystemic Context: Use a systems perspective to present information about the influence of family, community, and school on your client, including both stressors and supports. Group Topic, Theory, and Rationale: Present the topic and explain why a group on this topic is needed. (See Table 18-2 in your text for possible small group topics for children and adolescents.) Describe how your hypothetical client could benefit from being in this group. Which counseling theory will provide the best support for the clinical needs of the group (including your focus child or adolescent)? (See Table 18-1 in your text for goals that are typical for each theoretical orientation.) Group Objectives, Plan, and Sample Group Exercise: What specific, measurable, and reachable objectives will you have for the group members, given your chosen theory and time frame? One or two goals are appropriate. How long will each group session be? How often will you meet? How many sessions will you have? Incorporate information about developmental needs when planning the topic, frequency, and duration of the groups. Briefly describe one group exercise or technique you will implement that is developmentally appropriate, practical for your setting, consistent with your chosen theory, and helpful for achieving one of your group objectives. After describing the exercise, discuss your rationale for how it fits these criteria. Legal and Ethical Issues Plan: Articulate a legal and ethical issues plan that presents the specific steps you will take to establish an ethical group counseling relationship with your child or adolescent clients, considering their presenting issues. Identify potential ethical or legal issues that could arise with this specific group, and briefly describe how you will handle each of these, referencing specific laws and ethical codes. Use a minimum of five references, including your textbook. See the Resources for the Group Counseling Template that you will use to prepare this assignment. Your paper should be 5–7 pages in length, not including the title and references pages. No abstract is necessary.

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