SEL in the News
July 22, 2014
A letter to the NY Times written by outgoing Sacremento Unified School District Superintendent Johnathan Raymond about the average performance of U.S. 15 year olds. Read it here.
June 27, 2014
For those of you working with schools or districts on engaging and informing audiences through social media, or hoping to do so in the future, you might be interested in this Department of Education resource just released.
June 24, 2014
Interesting article by SAM member Lee Guerette on healthy classrooms which can be found in her newsletter which you can find here.
June 9, 2014
SAM member Lesson One featured in news feature in California here.
May 25, 2014
SEL in China!! Read about it in this China News Service story.
May 24, 2014
Oakland Unified School District’s emphasis on adults modeling SEL behavior is a model for other school districst. See the article here.
May 13, 2014
15 funding resources for sustained efforts in social-emotional learning for districts have been identifited by the Center for Health and Health Care in Schools and the Center on Educatiuon Policy. See the article here.
April 28, 2014
Eve Sullivan, founder of Parents Forum and SAM member, has written a very interesting blog on the Huffington Post website discussing her recent visit to Qatar for a conference on empowering families in the Arab world. She talks about the differences and similarities of the challenges facing families in the West compared to Arab families. See this article here
March 31, 2014
Lessons in empathy reduces acts of aggression, say Spanish researchers at the University of Malaga and University of the Basque Country, who have sought to address both these issues by examining the impact of a two-year SEL intervention on student aggression and empathy in eight Spanish secondary schools located in three different cities. See the article here.
March 10, 2014
“Strategies for Reducing Gun Violence in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts”, a report filed by the Committee to Reduce Firearm Violence appointed by Speaker DeLeo found that “robust mental health services…. need to be expanded in our schools.” Further, they have said that we must “bridge the mental health and educational systems to support youth in their social and emotional development, in addition to their academic success”. At P. 14.
March 4, 2014
Austin Superintendent Meria Carstarphen, was quoted as saying that, “You have to, yes, be accountable for academic outcomes, but we also have to be accountable to children and helping them develop [social and emotional] skills, and if we’re not doing it, I believe it’s educational malpractice,” she said. “Without doing those two things together, you’re not developing children who will be prepared for life, career and college.” Read the whole article here.
January 29, 2014
The Novo Foundation has given a $600,000 gift to SAM member Responsive Classroom to expand their services. Congratulations to our friends in Turners Falls, MA. Here is the announcement.
January 23, 2014
A teacher, Elizabeth Natale, at Sedgwick Middle School in West Hartford CT wrote an op-ed for the Hartford Courant entitled “Why I Want to Give Up Teaching.” It went viral. It is worth reading.
January 22, 2014
There is a new blogpost called “How to Integrate Social-Emotional Learning into Common Core” that makes for interesting reading.
January 16, 2014
“How are Social-Emotional Learning and the Common Core Connected?” is the subject of an article with Maurice Elias, Kristen Fink and Lauren Geller.
December 12, 2013
The American Psychology Association Task Force new report on “Gun Violence: Prediction, Prevention and Policy” came out today.
It said, in part, “A substantial body of scientific evidence identifies important developmental, familial, and social risk factors for violence. In addition, an array of rigorously tested psychological and educational interventions facilitate healthy social development and reduce aggressive behavior by teaching social skills and problem-solving strategies. It is important that policymakers and stakeholders recognize the value of prevention.” You can read here about the report as printed in the NY Times today.
December 11, 2013
In the New Yorker Magazine, Parents Forum founder and SAM member, Eve Sullivan, was published in a letter that she wrote advocating for parents resources as a “standard social service.” See the New Yorker letter (2nd down from the top). Congratulations, Eve!
November 16, 2013
The effect of trauma on children has a direct effect on how we should be managing discipline problems, so says David Bornstein in a NY Times Opiniator blog. See this article for an interesting perspective.
October 28, 2013
An excellent article in Education Today entitled “Social-Emotional Programs Target Students’ Long-Term Behavior”
October 15, 2013
SAM member Evelyn Frankford wrote in the Podium Boston Globe website about “Education and the mayoral candidates.” Check it out here.
October 11, 2013
October 7, 2013
Social-Emotional Learning the Focus of New NASBE Resource – The National Association of School Boards of Education From Practice to Policy was conceived as a new resource to help state board members and the education community at large better understand promising practices in school reform and see how these practices can be advanced through policy.
October 2, 2013
Forbes Magazine highlights the need for business leaders to embrace emotional intelligence. Read the article here.
September 16, 2013
September 5, 2013
Instructional article called, “Teaching the Whole Child: Instructional Practices That Support Social-Emotional Learning in Three Teacher Evaluation Frameworks” can be found here.
August 30, 2013
Boston Magazine’s September, 2013 has a brilliant article brought to our attention by Rachel Poliner called, “A Tale of Two Schools” by Rob Gurwitt about Orchard Park and Higgison/Lewis schools here in Boston.
August 28, 2013
A webinar on Sept 3, 2013 is available called, “Improving Classroom Climate Through Social-Emotional Learning.” You can register here.
August 27, 2013
Using Photography as a means of teaching social-emotional learning. A very interesting piece found here.
August 13, 2013
“Children Exposed to Violence”, by Eric Holder’s Task Force, is the best argument for SEL in every school in Massachusetts. Read it here!
August 9, 2013
SAM member and Director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence, Marc Brackett and Maurice Elias, Director of the Social-Emotional Learning Lab at Rutgers University, appeared on NPR to spread the word about SEL. Listen here.
July 28, 2013
A new Letter to the Editor by Mitch Lyons of the SEL Alliance was printed by the Boston Globe in regards anyone offering a long-term plan to reduce violence in the Boston mayoralty race on behalf of the Social Emotional Learning Alliance (SAM).
July 18, 2013
“I started searching for answers to these killings in 2008 when my neighbor’s son died on that very corner. My search led me to discover the concept of social-emotional learning, and I am eternally grateful. I believe with all of my being that it gives hope to my community and can help stem the tide of violence in my neighborhood and others.”
See the July 18th posting of an article from a woman in South Chicago who says SEL gives her community hope of reducing violence in their community. This is the essence of the SEL Alliance for Massachusetts (SAM). Let’s reach out to friends and neighbors and enlist their support.
July 7, 2013
Mitch Lyons, one of the organizers of the SEL Alliance for Massachusetts (SAM), writes a Letter to the Editor of the Boston Globe regarding a column by Alex Beam about re-classifying obesity as a “disease”. Mr. Lyons’ letter is linked here.
June 28, 2013
Q + A with Nan Stein in the Spring, 2013 edition of Wellesley Centers for Women “Research and Action Report”. The article, “Educators can make a difference in preventing gender-based violence,” follows her recent study findings and her involvement in the field of sexual harrassment for decades. Very interesting reading.
June 27, 2013
Goldman Sachs is investing in public education through social-impact bonds. Read about it here.
June 25, 2013
Eve Sullivan, founder of Parents’ Forum and SAM member, responds to Joan Vennochi’s article in her Letter to the Editor.
June 20, 2013
“Boston’s Gang Wars, 2013″ by Joan Vennochi has quotes in it from our leaders that will make you wince. Now is not the time to give up on violence in our streets. Now is the time to double down on prevention, in schools, at home, and in our community.
June 2, 2013
See a new video from Edutopia about Social-Emotional Learning (SEL).
May 1, 2013
An Op-ed in the NY Times, “No Rich Child Left Behind” explains the income gap as it affects education. It’s a very important piece to read.
Should we be thinking about expanding the mission of SAM to include pre-school parent education?
April 12, 2013
A new PBS NewsHour segment on Goldman Sachs/Rockefeller Foundation investment into social impact bonds and it’s potential to reduce recidivism at Rikkers Island prison.
April 11, 2013
For those interested in Social Impact Bonds (SIBs), this publication of a 33 page report on preparing for SIBs, written by Third Sector Capital Partners from a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation, is a “how-to” master plan for getting ready. All SEL providers should be interested in this new funding stream and if we work together, we can be prepared.
April 7, 2013
A video showing elementary school SEL training in Maine highlighting a Responsive Classroom program. See the video here.
March 29, 2012
Partners HealthCare posted a video of one of Boston’s elementary school’s program that is benefiting from their grant to a collaboration of Boston Public Health and the Boston Public Schools. See it here.
March 25, 2013
Goldman Sachs investing $9.6 million in the Adolescent Behavioral Learning Experience program, a new curriculum that seeks to bring down the number of youth offenders going back to prison via Social Impact Bond. Try to imagine how SEL can be funded in the same manner. Read more here.
March 24, 2013
Judith Rodin, President of the Rockefeller Foundation, explains how Social Impact Bonds are a new way of funding social change, like addressing recidivism for criminal offenders. But it has broader implications for the SEL community because it can finance prevention programs.
She says, “What [society] does is look for very well-proven, well-demonstrated, data-driven social interventions. Then it looks for private sector financing to support those interventions [that have been proven effective] based on performance.” Read more here.
March 19, 2013
Nova Biro, Co-Director of Open Circle at Wellesley College, has written an article for the Wheelock College’s Aspire Institute’s website entitled, “The Case for Social Emotional Learning”. You can find it here.
March 4, 2013
Although an older article, “Collective Impact” in Stanford’s Soical Innovation Review (Winter, 2011) gives an outline for how effective SAM could be if we can get all the players in Massachusetts together to work collectively by forming a common agenda, having a shared measurement system, conduct mutually reinforcing activites, continuous communication and a funded support staff. Please read this article for further discussion.
March 3, 2013
High school programs that teach teens to better manage their personality traits can help reduce and postpone problem drinking, a new study suggests. The Abstract of the Study can be viewed here.
“Two factors determine problem drinking: personality and peer pressure,” said study author Dr. Patricia Conrod of King’s College London’s Institute of Psychiatry. “Teaching young people how to better manage their personality traits or vulnerabilities helps them make the right decisions in given situations, whether it is a matter of overcoming their fears, managing thoughts that make them very emotional, controlling their compulsions, analyzing objectively the intentions of others or improving their self-perception.”
February 24, 2013
A New York Times, op-ed piece by Alex Kotlowicz bears reading entitled, “The Price of Public Violence.” We can only hope he does an article about long term plans to mitigate violence and addiction that includes SEL.
Febraury 5, 2013
NexusEQ, “Spark Positive Change”, June 24-26, 2013, at Harvard University.
This large conference examines the power of emotions from many different aspects with interesting and accomplished speakers and after conference webinars that will extend the conversation. They wish to spark positive change. SAM members Deborah Donahue-Keegan and Karen Craddock will be delivering a workshop there. Get more information and see the speakers listed here.
January 17, 2013
President Obama unveiled “Now is the Time; The President’s plan to protect our children and our communities by reducing gun violence.” On Page 14, he says, “To help schools break the cycle of violence, Congress should provide $25 million to offer students mental health services for trauma or anxiety, conflict resolution programs, and other school-based violence prevention strategies.”
January 13, 2013
Mitch Lyons has written an article for Santa Clara Law School Magaizne entitled, “Building an Ethical Athlete Starts Before College”. In it, he suggests that sport psychology, which fits under the umbrella of social-emotional learning (SEL), should be taught on youth and school sports teams and that the idea that sports is extra-curricular is a 19th century idea. Sports should embrace sport psychology at the earliest level in an educational way, where the priniciples are discussed and read about and where the team should act as the laboratory for students to test the axioms.
December 8, 2012
Hurricane Sandy caused great stress in students . The article shows how stress affects children everyday from many sources. Read here.
November 30, 2012
Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino today announced that Partners HealthCare, and its founding hospitals Brigham and Women’s and Massachusetts General Hospital, is committing $1 million to the Boston Public Health Commission for a collaborative effort among the two organizations and the Boston Public Schools to implement Open Circle, a social and emotional learning program developed and run out of the Wellesley Centers for Women at Wellesley College, for 7,000 students in 23 Boston public elementary and K-8 schools. Read here.
November 15, 2012
On September 20, 2012, in Washington DC, CASEL unveiled the 2013 CASEL Guide: Effective Social and Emotional Learning Programs – Preschool and Elementary School Edition. It is now available online on the CASEL website. The guide (an update of Safe and Sound) on SEL programs that meet CASEL criteria for effectiveness: solid program design, quality professional development and implementation supports, and positive outcomes for students. Read about it here!
Race to the Top District awards will include an evaluation of social-emotional learning for the first time. See this Education Week article that appears in their October 19, 2012 issue.
November 12, 2012
Professor Maurice Elias, in an August 2, 2012 Edutopia article, lists the different aspects of what SAM calls “social-emotional learning (SEL)”, which we use as a broad-based term that encapsulates many different approaches to the same problems. He includes: Social-Emotional Learning. Character Education. Service Learning. Peer Mediation. Bullying Prevention. Anger Management. Drug/Alcohol Prevention. Violence Prevention. Ethical-Decision Making. Harassment Prevention. Positive Behavior Supports.
October 19, 2012
For the first time, Race to the Top awards will be based partially on social-emotional learning (SEL) components to their districts plans. This is a great advancement!! See the article here.
October 9, 2012
SAM member, Sondra Peskoe, sent this very interesting article on “The Bullying Conundrum” by Jill Anderson published online by Harvard Graduate School of Education.
October 1, 2012
Here is an interesting interview with Paul Tough, author of “How Children Succeed” and others.
September 28, 2012
David Brooks, his NY Times column, “The Psych Apporach” talks about Paul Tough’s book, “How Children Succeed” and social-emotional learning. Mr. Brooks suggestion at the end of his column is something all SAM members should consider as our approach to advance the SEL agenda.
“When you look over the domestic policy landscape, you see all these different people in different policy silos with different budgets: in health care, education, crime, poverty, social mobility and labor force issues. But, in their disjointed ways, they are all dealing with the same problem — that across vast stretches of America, economic, social and family breakdowns are producing enormous amounts of stress and unregulated behavior, which dulls motivation, undermines self-control and distorts lives.
Maybe it’s time for people in all these different fields to get together in a room and make a concerted push against the psychological barriers to success.”
August 31, 2012
“Effective and Resilient Schools: An Integrated Approach to School-Based Mental Health” , Friday, Sept 14, 2012, 12:30 – 3:30 PM @ the Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology at One Wells Avenue in Newton, MA. The speaker will be Kevin Dwyer, a Nationally Certified School Psychologist with over 30 years experience as a practitioner, who now works as a consultant for the American Institutes for Research. He is a former president of the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP), and a recipient of the NASP Lifetime Achievement Award.
August 12, 2012
If you want to see what is going on in the SEL world, go to Google Alerts and type in “social-emotional learning” and you can keep up to date on what is happening in the English-speaking world.
On August 22 and 23, from 8:30 AM - 3:00 PM, the Newton Partnership of the Newton Public Schools is holding a FREE seminar entitled, ““Safe for All: Creating Healthy Environments to Achieve School Success.” These are two seperate seminars, a day long each, although you can attend both days. Here is the Link.
There are spaces available for a program brought to you by the Lexington School District progam called the Aware Teacher on July 17 and 18. If you are interested, please contact Len Swanton (email@example.com).
From the June 28, 2012 CASEL newsletter:
Bipartisan Support for SEL in Congress
Conventional wisdom suggests that the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA, or No Child Left Behind) will have to wait until after the November elections. Nevertheless, CASEL and our collaborators have been actively monitoring progress on the various ESEA bills that have been introduced thus far and maintaining high visibility for social and emotional learning. SEL has gained bipartisan support in both the House of Representatives and the Senate and is mentioned in five draft pieces of legislation or the report language that accompanies them.
- HR 2437: the Academic, Social and Emotional Learning Act of 2011.
- The Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 2012.
- HR 3989: the Student Success Act of 2012.
- HR 3990: the Encouraging Innovation and Effective Teachers Act of 2012.
- HR 3821: the Afterschool for America’s Children Act of 2012.
CASEL will continue to be involved in federal policy activities as the political season progresses. We will keep you informed about opportunities to provide information and support to advance our collective efforts for social and emotional learning in the national education agenda.”
July 2, 2012
It is a two-part article that recently appeared in the Huffington Post, focusing on the Safe and Supportive/trauma sensitive schools movement in Massachusetts (and also Washington State), highlights some of the work of the Brockton Schools, and addresses the Safe and Supportive Schools legislation H1962 as an example of the pioneering work in Massachusetts.
June 26, 2012
A concise overview of SEL for an “elevator” speech about SEL in this blogpost
June 11, 2012
Word from one of our members is the “Activiting Empathy Competition” at Changemakers offers a Massachusetts choice, Opening the Door to Parents is a Cambridge MA organization. Read and vote here.
May 15, 2012
American Institutes for Research have a surveymonkey for students to evaluate SEL skills. It is specifically for the Chicago Public Schools as one of eight federally funded (Collaborative Districts Initiative) distircts focusing on SEL. See the survey here.
May 3, 2012
There is an upcoming conference sponsored by the Massachusetts School Psychologists Association on May 11, 2012 at the Sheraton Hotel in Framingham. The presenter is Dr. Maurice Elias, who is a founding member of the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (www.CASEL.org) and he is presenting on “Promoting Social-Emotional and Character Development: Rationale and Best Practices.”
More information about the conference is available at http://www.mspa-online.com/
Apirl 23, 2012
The Kansas Board of Education has approved the “Kansas Social, Emotional and Character Development Model Standards“. This approval puts Kansas and Massachusetts in the same position of having districts develop the will to implement these standards, but also finance training and change pre-service requirements for new teachers to include SEL. More information to come on the Kansas model.
April 20, 2011
Responsive Classroom has named a new director to replace Roxanne Kriete, SAM member and Executive Director of Responsive Classroom for 26 years. Her name is Dr. Lora Hodges and she has had over two decades of educational leadership experience. We in the SEL community welcome her. You can read more here.
April 10, 2012
For the first time ever, both houses of Congress have included social and emotional learning in drafts of the federal government’s bellwether education legislation. On February 9, Representative John Kline (R-MI), chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, introduced the Student Success Act (HR3989).
The definition of professional development in the “Student Success Act” states:
The term professional development . . . includes activities that . . . advance teacher understanding of instructional strategies that are (I) evidence-based, (II) strategies for improving student academic achievement or substantially increasing the knowledge and teaching skills of teachers, including through addressing the social and emotional development needs of students….
Although the overall House legislation is controversial and will not likely pass in its present form, this is an important step in getting social and emotional learning written into the language of the final bill. The Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee already included social and emotional learning in its version of the ESEA reauthorization bill late last year.
From the CASEL newsletter, April 10, 2012
March 30, 2012
There is much to be learned from Charleston’s afterschool SEL program, WINGS. Read about it here.
March 28, 2012
Dr. Susan Albers conducts an interesting interview with Travis Bradberry, author of Emotional Intelligence 2.0 right here.
March 25, 2012
Developing a Universal Screening Tool for Social, Emotional and Behavior Competency from James Cressey of Framingham State is an interesting pdf file to absorb.
March 22, 2012
Toledo, Ohio Public Schools released this video of teachers and administrators talking about Social-Emotional Learning and its effect on their school system .
March 11, 2012
Jeanne Osgood, former employee of CASEL, has written an article that you can see here that shows how a school foundation raised money based on SEL teaching and benefits.
March 10, 2012
Author and international educational consultant Jonathan Erwin, has been a secondary English teacher, staff development specialist, and college professor. Here, he writes about interesting SEL activities such as class meetings, individual activities, and resources to help students gain insight into others’ feelings and learn to attune their behavior to them.
February 19, 2012
Sandra Aamodt and Sam Wang, New York Times Op-Ed, entitled, “Building Self-Control, the American Way” mentions the CASEL study on Page 2, paragraph 3, as proof that “helping children to identify their emotions and think through possible consequences before reacting improves self-control….accelerate school achievement.”
Read the Op-Ed here.
February 16, 2012
The Mental Health Summit 2012, a conference of 300 government and mental health officials and academics from across Canada, heard Premier Greg Selinger say that costs associated with poor mental health in Canada amount to more than $50 billion a year.
Roberts and others believe there are huge potential returns for school-based screening of kids for depression and alcohol misuse and programs to reduce anti-social behaviour.
Dr. Glen Roberts, executive director of the Canadian Policy Network at the University of Western Ontario, said, “If you really want the best returns on investment in the area of mental health promotion and illness prevention, it probably should be in the school system,” he said Tuesday.
January 30, 2012
The Palo Alto Unified School District is having a meeting with Parents about SEL. This is a good example of how our new Speakers’ Bureau can help spread the word about the benefits of SEL.
January 14, 2012
New Mexico Pre-K published interesting tips for fostering SEL in the classoom including pictures of people showing different emotions.
January 9, 2012
Aspen Colorado elementary school takes “brain breaks” to further social-emotional learning.
January 4, 2012
An Oregon State University study has found that a focused program to build social, emotional and character skills resulted in significantly improved overall quality of education.
January 1, 2012
There’s a FB page for American Educational Research Association (AERA) that you may wish to look at and “like” which is devoted to SEL research.
December 24, 2011
In District Administration, a periodical for “Solutions for School District Management”, there is an interesting article about a November conference where teachers were advised to use social-emotional learning (SEL) to reduce their stress levels and “combat” burnout. The logical next step: pass on the SEL skills they learn to their students.
December 23, 2011
On You Tube, a series of videos on Social-Emotional Learning (SEL) in action and Shelly Berman talking about SEL.
December 17, 2011
Kewanee, Illinois students and staff speak at a Raising Student Achievement Conference about how SEL has improved academic test scores and lessesened discipline problems in the school.
December 12, 2011
Read about the SEL Alliance of Massachusetts in the latest CASEL newsletter!!!
November 25, 2011
Harvard Law Students Testify Before Education Committee about Safe and Supportive Schools.
September 7, 2011
Daniel T. Willingham is a cognitive pyshcology professor at the University of Virgina who writes an interesting article in his series, “Ask the Cognitive Scientist” which addresses self-regulation. “Can Teachers Increase Students’ Self-Control?”
July 25, 2011
SEL is included in the 357-page, 2011 State of Black Boston, published by the Urban League of Eastern Massachusetts.
An excellent resource, it represents the combined sponsorship of the Urban League, the Boston Chapter of the NAACP and the Trotter Institute of UMASS Boston.
In the introduction, the State of Black Boston states:
“Barbara Lewis, director of the Trotter Institute, calls the State of Black Boston report “a workbook for change.” No single organization can effect the needed change. It will take a community-wide effort by existing organizations, perhaps new ones, concerned individuals, and all levels of representative government. Ideally, many will take up the challenge and take responsibility for implementing specific recommended action steps or launching an initiative of their own directed at achieving the same goals. This community-wide effort should not be confined to the Black community. Everyone who lives in the city has a stake in the outcome. A stronger Black Boston will make for a still better Boston.”
The SEL article , written by Mitch Lyons, Executive Director of GetPsychedSports.org and volunteer member of the Community Advsiory Board for the SOBB, can be found on the middle of page 239 – 243.
May 27, 2011
“Bolder, Broader Action: Strategies for Closing the Poverty Gap”
by Massachusetts Secretary of Education Paul Reville
“We have set the nation’s highest standards, been tough on accountability and invested billions in building school capacity, yet we still see a very strong correlation between socioeconomic background and educational achievement and attainment. It is now clear that unless and until we make a more active effort to mitigate the impediments to learning that are commonly associated with poverty, we will still be faced with large numbers of children who are either unable to come to school or so distracted as not to be able to be attentive and supply effort when they get there. In other words, we must create a healthy platform in the lives of all of our children if we expect them to show the learning gains expected to result from optimized instructional strategies.”
For the whole article, click here.
April 6, 2011
Kindness can be taught; it is being taught
Social and emotional learning helps kindergartners deal with the world
Lisa Pevtzow, Chicago Tribune
”Since 2003, social and emotional learning has been a legislative mandate in Illinois. Although all districts have a social and emotional learning policy on the books, they are implemented to greater or lesser degrees based on interest and finances.
Mine, Glencoe School District 35, is going at it like gangbusters.
Each week, my son and his fellow kindergartners, for instance, sit on the floor with their teacher and do exercises that help them to identify emotions (both others’ and their own), solve conflicts and reduce frustration. They also learn not to be bystanders……..” (See full article at link)
March 29, 2011
Other cities taking steps to deal with violent behavior
By Susan Snyder
Inquirer Staff Writer
Around the country, schools are trying to find effective ways to deal with violence among young students.
The 47,000-student Cleveland Metropolitan School District almost two years ago instituted a social and emotional learning curriculum in kindergarten through fifth grade. Teachers three times a week instruct students in how to understand their emotions and control their behavior, said Angela Buford Payne, a district spokeswoman.
“It teaches them that when something happens that upsets you, stop, think, and calm down, and come up with a plan,” she said.
The curriculum includes a process called “turtling” in which students are taught to cross their arms over their body and envision themselves withdrawing into a shell when they encounter a threat. They are instructed to stop, breathe, and state the problem.
At the end of last school year, 86 percent of teachers said in a survey that classroom behavior and overall environment improved as a result of the program.
The curriculum was part of a larger plan by the district to address the social and emotional needs of its students. It was prompted by a 2007 shooting at a district high school in which a student killed himself and wounded two others. (See full article at link)
March 8, 2011
The DESE called for input and opinion as to the content of Guidelines for Implementation of an SEL Curriculum K-12 as it considers how to fulfill the mandate of the Legislature to publish the Guidelines by the end of June.
At a well-run facilitation conducted by Rachelle Bennett and Ann Gilligan at the DESE on March 8, 2011, those present had interesting comments that are summarized as follows:
- The most effective programs have the whole school involved;
- It is important to speak a common language in SEL so the skills are transferrable;
- Each school should have one program and not mix and match different programs;
- The community should be involved in a transition to SEL;
- Programs should be sought that conform to the SAFE standards as defined by CASEL as Sequenced, Active, Focused and Explicit Skill Training;
- Workshops for parents, offering hints on how to promote SEL at home, should be held;
- The principal of the school must buy-in to an SEL curriculum of the school;
- Schools have to develop, build and sustain SEL to be effective;
- Both teachers and students must be learning and practicing together;
- Once size does not fit each school due to cultural differences and needs of each school;
- Colleges should have certification of SEL training;
- Skills must be tangible and not abstract;
- The curriculum is one piece of the puzzle; instruction in SEL and practicing SEL skills is the other;
- Outline the benefits of SEL so that teachers and staff know why they are making a change to SEL;
- Give districts web resources such as http://www.casel.org/ for evidence of effectiveness;
- Encourage specific curricula that target violence and addictions because 22% of the state budget addresses just these two issues.
February 22, 2011
The NoVo Institute, operated by the Buffett family, has donated $2M to sponsor a chair at University of Illinois at Chicago for further research into Social-Emotional Learning.
January 7, 2011
From StudentFirst in Arkansas comes this article about 10 things parents can do in their homes to improve social-emotional learning.
December 12, 2010
An interesting blog from Kimberly Hacket of Cambridge, MA
November 17, 2010
SEL Skills for Life Rolls Out in Two Ohio Districts
CASEL is partnering with Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility and the Inner Resilience Program to assist the Youngstown and Warren City School Districts in Ohio in developing sustainable district-wide implementation of social and emotional learning. The American Institutes for Research (AIR) is also collaborating as evaluators of the project.
Skills for Life is funded by a grant from the US Department of Education and sponsored by Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio. The program is intended to serve as a model for system-wide implementation of social and emotional learning at the district level. This approach to SEL implementation has been championed by Ohio Congressman Tim Ryan and supported with federal funding to improve the quality of life and learning in the area. “It’s about making sure we are cultivating healthy and compassionate young people. It’s about helping children develop an inner compass, a touchstone, that will help them navigate the rough waters of childhood, and then adulthood, in America. Social and Emotional Learning is a transformative strategy that needs to be an integral part of every child’s education.”
Through this project and evaluation of it by AIR, CASEL will gain additional experience in district-wide implementation through a partnership model. “What is happening in Warren and Youngstown–integrating a research-based SEL program for students with an evidence-based model of transformational professional development for the adults in children’s lives–is key to ensuring long-term sustainability and expansion of this work,” said Linda Lantieri, founding board member of CASEL, who is helping to lead this effort with CASEL.
From the Chicago Tribune:
Beyond book learning: Schools teach social and
October 05, 2010|By Bonnie Miller Rubin, Tribune reporter
In Lauren Topazian’s fifth-grade classroom, the walls are covered with artifacts of ancient civilizations. But today she is asking her students to put themselves somewhere far less exotic: in their classmates’ shoes.
The youngsters are acting out scenarios that call for offering friends a little extra support — such as when a pal loses an art contest or is the target of a rumor. The role-playing speaks volumes about the culture at Cossitt School in La Grange, where thinking about how your behavior affects others is as much a part of the day as reading and math.
“You can’t just assume kids know how to show kindness or resolve conflict,” said Principal Mary Tavegia. “You’ve got to give them the tools as soon as they walk in the door.”