For parents – and educators – there is so much to consider when preparing children for their educational journey and their working life thereafter.
Today we focus on social-emotional learning (SEL) – a vital part of human development. This is the process of developing self-awareness, self-control, and interpersonal skills. People with strong social-emotional abilities are better able to cope with everyday challenges – and they benefit academically, professionally, as well as socially. SEL, which is beyond the usual school subjects such as the 3Rs, helps children identify their feelings; understand and communicate with others; build strong relationships; and make good, empathetic decisions. It includes:
- becoming aware of a sense of self – a learner’s ability to recognise and identify his/her own emotions, develop a perception of ‘self’ that matches reality, believe in his/her capacity to achieve goals, and determine his/her areas of strength and weakness,
- fostering relationships with other people,
- solving problems,
- overcoming obstacles,
- understanding empathy,
- making sense of social justice,
- learning how to manage emotions.
Here at Capulum College we address SEL by creating opportunities for partner and group work, during which we focus on nurturing a culture of kindness. We teach mindfulness, allow time for talking and help our learners to build social-emotional vocabularies. This means finding words that accurately describe how you, the individual, is feeling. We also include reflective writing which is recording how a situation has impacted you and what you plan to do with your new knowledge. Self-management is part of the process and involves learners directing their thoughts, behaviour, and emotions so that they develop an ability to make decisions that benefit, not only themselves, but also those around them.
Fewer behavioural problems, less emotional distress and positive social behaviour are a few of the benefits of social-emotional learning.