How to Become a Peer Counselor (Middle School)

Peer counseling is not just a simple game. It deals with emotions. It's a big job, and a big responsibility in middle school. If you think you're up for it, read on!


  1. Image titled Become a Peer Counselor (Middle School) Step 1
    Have a good reputation. Strive to be a role model at school with positive feedback from students and teachers alike.
  2. Image titled Become a Peer Counselor (Middle School) Step 2
    Know yourself. Know your capabilities and areas needing improvement.
  3. Image titled Become a Peer Counselor (Middle School) Step 3
  4. Image titled Become a Peer Counselor (Middle School) Step 4
    Listen. Don't just hear, learn how to listen. Peer counseling is all about listening skills.
  5. Image titled Become a Peer Counselor (Middle School) Step 5
    Be trustworthy. Keep information confidential but before doing any peer counseling explain the exceptions to confidentiality--danger to self or others in particular. Never agree to keep a secret but agree that you will keep things confidential. There is a big difference. Always make sure to get supervision from the school counselor and discuss any concerns with them as soon as possible.


  • Get to know some peer counselors and ask for additional tips.
  • Ask open-ended questions. Open ended questions are questions that can't be answered by a simple yes or no. Examples:
    • What happened next?
    • How do you feel?
    • What do you think?
  • Go through a peer counselor training process prior to doing any peer counseling
  • Be sure to have a school counselor available to supervise and answer any questions that may occur. Remember you are not a professional school counselor and there is a big difference (a graduate degree, being an adult, etc.)
  • Mirror the body language of the person you're counseling. It may make her or him feel comfortable as long as you don't overdo it.
  • Be ready to listen to academic, career, college, and personal/social issues including sex, drugs, violence, bullying, etc.


  • Empathize, do not sympathize. To sympathize means to feel exactly the same way as the person you are listening to. But to empathize is to respect what the person feels.
  • Never interrupt the speaker. It may be tempting to share your own experience too but you must stop yourself from giving in to temptation.
  • Never state your own opinions. It will alienate the person you are counseling.

Things You'll Need

  • A book about Neurolinguistics (optional, but it will surely help)

Article Info

Categories: School Leadership