What is Social Emotional Learning?

Parents expect their kids to learn writing, reading and other skills at school. However, experts worry that children are not learning the social skills they need to prosper in life, which an aspect of learning that is as important as any other.

According to the statistics, about half of public schools registered at least one severe disciplinary action, and the third of schools dealt with physical attacks. For this reason, Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) promoters expect to use social skill education to address safety, discipline and behavior to help students control their emotions, and create social skills such as perspective-taking, empathy, and appreciating differences. They also want to help them become self-aware, make positive decisions and form good relationships. These skills will enable children to resolve conflicts respectfully, calm themselves when mad and make healthy and beneficial choices.

SEL is More Than Class Rules

Classic classroom management includes motivation, rules and consequences. However, SEL is more than a plan to help kids be caring and kind, or a set of class rules. SEL program implies that children are included in designing the school environment, deciding on consequences and writing rules. The program should be an essential part of the school day from day one. In kindergarten, children manage emotions and feelings through play. As they get older, children are analyzing history and literature using an SEL focus, role-plays and case studies. In conclusion, a good SEL program incorporates life skills such as reflection, active learning, and self-awareness with the content areas of literature, history and other classes.

Enhancing More than Social Skills

According to Collaboration for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning study, a school can anticipate improved student behavior and a rise in test scores if a quality SEL curriculum is implemented. Social and emotional learning enhances achievement, and the benefits that schools see in those achievements include factors in which SEL curriculum builds work habits, kids feel safer and build strong relationships with teachers, which also results in teachers being more effective.

Is SEL Enough for Every Kid?

Social and emotional curriculums are universal programs created to help all the students in a class. Yet, some children will struggle more than others. Children with emotional disabilities, or ADHD, or those who have a hard time at home might need extra help to adopt SEL skills.

Parent Involvement is Crucial for SEL Success

Ultimately, SEL develops within the context of safe school, family and community environments. As your kid’s school starts an SEL program, you can expect to be included.


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