Why Social and Emotional Learning Is Essential for Students

Educating the mind without educating the heart is no education at all.

“SEL is the process through which children and adults understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.”

What is Social Emotional Learning?

  • Social-emotional learning (SEL) helps kids work on things like coping with feelings and setting goals.

  • It also helps with interpersonal skills like working in teams and resolving conflicts.

  • SEL can help kids who learn and think differently talk about their challenges and build self-esteem.

Why is Social Emotional Learning (SEL) important?

SEL is a process for helping our youth develop the fundamental skills for life-effectiveness. Socially and emotionally competent children are skilled in five core areas: they are self-aware and socially aware, are able to regulate emotions, have good relationship skills, demonstrate responsible decision-making throughout all areas of life, and can set and monitor progress towards goals wellbeing, helping to manage stress and foster resiliency.

Skills of SEL

SEL begins as early as preschool, where children learn to take turns, to share, and to be kind to others. As they move through their educational career, students develop strong relational skills through SEL lessons that build upon one another over time.

These skills can include

5 Keys to Successful SEL

Self-Awareness

Self-awareness involves understanding one’s own emotions, personal goals, and values. This includes accurately assessing one’s strengths and limitations, having positive mindsets, and possessing a well-grounded sense of self-efficacy and optimism. High levels of self-awareness require the ability to recognize how thoughts, feelings, and actions are interconnected.

Self-Management

Self-management requires skills and attitudes that facilitate the ability to regulate one’s own emotions and behaviors. This includes the ability to delay gratification, manage stress, control impulses, and persevere through challenges in order to achieve personal and educational goals.

Social awareness

Social awareness involves the ability to understand, empathize, and feel compassion for those with different backgrounds or cultures. It also involves understanding social norms for behavior and recognizing family, school, and community resources and supports.

Relationship skills

Relationship skills help students establish and maintain healthy and rewarding relationships, and to act in accordance with social norms. These skills involve communicating clearly, listening actively, cooperating, resisting inappropriate social pressure, negotiating conflict constructively, and seeking help when it is needed.

Responsible decision making

Responsible decision making involves learning how to make constructive choices about personal behavior and social interactions across diverse settings. It requires the ability to consider ethical standards, safety concerns, accurate behavioral norms for risky behaviors, the health and well-being of self and others, and to make realistic evaluation of various actions’ consequences.

How project happiness develops SEL among students

SEL is a process for helping our youth develop the fundamental skills for life-effectiveness. Socially and emotionally competent children are skilled in five core areas: they are self-aware and socially aware, are able to regulate emotions, have good relationship skills, demonstrate responsible decision-making throughout all areas of life, and can set and monitor progress towards goals wellbeing, helping to manage stress and foster resiliency.

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