Social-emotional learning curriculum (SEL) targets five important skills for students: self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, relationship skills and responsible decision making. SEL makes many claims about the positive effects it has on students including: reduction of student conduct issues, reduction of risk-taking behavior, decrease in emotional distress, increased attendance, increased empathy, increased positive peer relationships and increased positive relationships with adults.
SEL is essential, especially in the unpredictable and unprecedented school experiences that students have been going through for this past year. I know that this year it feels like SO much has been put on the backburner. Our time with our students is SO limited and precious this year and must only be used for the absolutely essential standards. However, integrating SEL (social-emotional learning) into our scaled-down schedule is possible every day.
I have found success with beginning each day (whether in the physical or virtual classroom) with a “Morning Meeting” to help start off each day in a positive way. It helps to build relationships and establish a feeling of community within a classroom. Start each day with an open-ended question for the students such as, “What are three traits that make you unique?” This question could be used as a class discussion or as a writing or drawing prompt.
There is so much that can be done to integrate SEL daily in both your physical and virtual classroom. Below is a link to a post of over 30 different ways to integrate SEL specifically during distance learning:
1st Grade Teacher
La Rosa Elementary