What is Social & Emotional Learning (SEL) and why teach it?
SEL consists of five key skills:
- Self-awareness – recognition of one’s own emotions, personal goals, and values
- Self-management – regulation of one’s own emotions and behaviors
- Social awareness – understanding of and compassion for others’ backgrounds or cultures Relationship skills – ability to establish and maintain healthy relationships
- Responsible decision-making – making positive choices involving one’s own behavior
These five key skills are essential for success in virtually every area of life, from education to employment to family and community relationships. Integrating SEL into the lives of students not only creates better academic outcomes, it also gives them a firm foundation to operate successfully once their academic career is complete.
Social and emotional learning takes academic learning a step further, helping students to develop resilience in the face of adversity. When combined with a PBIS (Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports) initiative, SEL can help improve behavior, develop communication skills, and improve leadership among students. Problem solving, teamwork, character and grit are some of the traits characterized by my students.