Positive Psychology Classes w Bonnie Gonzalez (and Ernie)
Positive Psychology is the study of the traits and conditions that contribute to human flourishing and well-being. Positive psychologists focus their attention on our strengths instead of our weaknesses. This focus has been shown to improve our happiness and our success in reaching our life goals.
At Aim Academy, we make the tenets of positive psychology part of our academy-wide culture. We want our faculty, students, and families to flourish by equipping them with an understanding of their innate strengths–like grit, a growth mindset, and resilience. One of the main ways we accomplish this is through webinars and classes taught by Bonnie Gonzalez, a licensed and practicing family counselor.
Q. Bonnie, tell us a bit about your background and your goals for your students at Aim Academy?
As I troubled high school student, I wished for a teacher to guide me through some tough decisions and to help me make wise choices about my future. After spending 30+ years “doing” psychology as a counselor, I decided to become THAT teacher for high school students – someone who would use the principles of positive psychology to help students learn about their thoughts and behaviors, and to make good decisions.
I have always believed that if you love a subject you will learn it! In practice then, as a teacher, my goal is to help my students love the topics in psychology and sociology. In my classes we study everything from the areas of the brain that direct our behavior to the influence of the people and groups around us as we make decisions and gain our motivation. My job is to help my students discover the “whys” of what we do, and then look at the possible ways to channel their behavior toward something that is worthwhile and good.
Q: What do you enjoy most about teaching for Aim Academy?
There are several reasons I love teaching at Aim Academy. First is the interactions with students and parents. The size of the classes allows me to fully engage with each student and with his/her parents. Working together with open communication allows me to plan my class for the benefit of each student’s needs. I also enjoy teaching with Aim because of the interaction with faculty members and the freedom to explore new classes that might be helpful to our student population. Our faculty is open to new ideas and new courses that benefit our students.
Q. What got you through the pandemic?
Throughout the past year, I have spent lots of time reading psychology books – I guess reading would qualify as part of my pandemic relief. The pandemic also allowed me to spend quality time with family (since we were only seeing each other), without the hustle and bustle of life. Our conversations and time together were delightful. Finally, I got through the pandemic by spending lots more time in prayer and some quiet reflection.