Social & Emotional Learning
Social and emotional learning means the processes by which children acquire the knowledge, attitudes and skills necessary to:
- Recognize and manage their emotions
- Demonstrate care and concern for others
- Establish positive relations
- Make responsible decisions
- Constructively handle challenging social situations
Social Emotional Learning Skills
The goals of SEL lessons include teaching the following basic skills:
Benefits of SEL
- Identifying and recognizing emotions
- Accurate self-perception
- Strengths, needs, values
- Impulse control and stress management
- Self-motivation and discipline
- Goal setting
- Organizational skills
- Social Awareness
- Perspective taking
- Difference recognition
- Respect for others
- Relationship Skills
- Social engagement and relationship building
- Working cooperatively
- Conflict management
- Help seeking
- Responsible Decision Making
- Problem identification and situation analysis
- Problem solving
- Evaluation and reflection
- Personal, social and ethical responsibility
Implementation of SEL programs in schools provides a foundation for creating a safe learning environment where all scholars can succeed. Effective programs include multi-component school-based interventions involving classroom-based curricula that focus on teaching scholars skills to enhance social and emotional competencies as well as academic learning. These critical social-emotional competencies involve skills that enable scholars to calm themselves when angry, initiate friendships and resolve conflicts respectfully, make ethical and safe choices, and contribute constructively to their community.
Key findings on effective SEL work in schools include the following:
- Improved academic achievement: Scholars involved in SEL programming experienced significantly greater academic achievement than scholars who do not receive SEL.
- Improved school attitudes and behaviors: SEL instilled greater motivation to learn, a deeper commitment to school, increased time devoted to schoolwork, better classroom behavior, and improved attendance and graduation rates.
- Fewer negative behaviors: Among scholars receiving SEL instruction, disruptive class behavior, noncompliance, aggression, delinquent acts, and disciplinary referrals decreased significantly.
- Reduced emotional distress: Reports of scholar depression, anxiety, stress, or social withdrawal significantly decreased among scholars receiving SEL instruction.