Using the right platform in the classroom can help you with social-emotional learning. Middle school-grade children can learn how to manage their own behaviors while being more socially aware of what’s going on around them. SEL Adventures has aligned with the five CASEL core competencies in order to help students get the help that they need.
The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) has five core competencies:
- Social awareness
- Relationship skills
- Responsible decision-making
These five competencies help students to become better-rounded. They are able to make better decisions regarding how they behave in certain situations while also learning how to be empathetic towards fellow students.
In the classroom, it can be difficult to teach these competencies. SEL Adventures is a platform that can be used in an educational setting so that middle-schoolers can have the social-emotional training that they need to function more effectively in the classroom and throughout life.
The Components of SEL Adventures
There are quite a few components in SEL Adventures to help with social-emotional learning. This includes a focus on empathy, positive relationships, anger and stress management, and responsible decision making. These pair well with the CASEL competencies to ensure that students can not only become self-aware but also situationally aware. They’re more likely to help a student in need as opposed to bullying them for their differences.
Further, there are a number of resources that SEL Adventures uses in order to help with the learning. This ensures that students can connect with the messages in a way that works for them. Some of the resources include:
– Drawing tools
– Decisional balances
– Concept maps
With these resources, students find it fun and exciting to use the platform online. Teachers are able to choose what resources to use. Plus, there is progress analysis of the students, making it easier to provide personalized lessons to the students. Reports can be sent home to parents so that it’s easier to maintain the relationships and ensure that students are using their interpersonal skills at home.
Providing the Needed Help
It’s been proven time and again that students aren’t getting all of the help that they need to manage their behavior and stress at home. It’s why there’s more bullying going on and why so many students are graduating high school without being able to make ethical choices.
The CASEL competencies have been created to ensure that social and emotional learning is broken down into digestible bites. The SEL Adventures platform then takes the information to ensure that students can assess their emotions, effectively regulate them, and have empathy for others. Additionally, the various resources allow students to build their relationship skills so that they know how to function around their classmates in a healthier way.
Class participation is of the utmost importance. As a teacher, you want to make sure that your students are comprehending from a day to day basis. You also want to encourage them to ask questions if they don’t know something. Otherwise, you go through the class with everyone just staring at you, not knowing whether they “get” the material or not.
The problem is that many students don’t want to raise their hand. They’re scared of being bullied, shy about talking in front of the class, and nervous about what other people will think. When you have a classroom filled with middle schoolers, everyone will have their own reasons for not raising their hand. The problem is, you need them to raise them so that you can find out what your students know and don’t know.
The good news is that there are some ways to get your students to feel more confident in the classroom. SEL Adventures is a social-emotional learning platform that can make an impact, too. It will help you to develop pro-social behaviors that can lead to more positive relationships.
Avoid Calling Out
Calling out the answers are only great if your students are assertive. If anyone has been bullied, they’re going to shy away. Students who participate are more likely to do better in class, so avoid letting only a few voices to be heard.
Show Model Behavior
SEL Adventures focuses on various resources, including videos and comics to model proper behavior. These concepts can be used to show students what you expect out of them. They’ll learn that they have to raise their hand in order to be heard. More importantly, they’ll learn that it’s the best way to enhance their educational experience.
Don’t Allow Comments
When someone raises their hand to ask a question, be sure to shut down any comments made elsewhere in the classroom. Students will often be wary of raising their hand if they know that other students are going to make snide or rude comments in the background. Promote an open learning atmosphere. By focusing on empathy in the classroom, too, students are less likely to make comments when someone asks a question.
As students learn that there is “no stupid question” and that you expect them to raise their hand periodically when you ask a question to the class, they’ll develop the confidence to raise their hand more often. If you notice a few students that never raise their hand, have them stay back after class to talk to them. There may be some social anxiety going on that you weren’t aware of – and that you can fix given the opportunity.
Start putting some of the ideas into practice in your classroom. Adding SEL Adventures platform to the curriculum, too, can make a big difference.
Brian Coleman, a school counselor and counseling department chair at Jones College Prep in Chicago, Ill., has been named the 2019 School Counselor of the Year by the American School Counselor Association (ASCA). The School Counselor of the Year award honors professionals who devote their careers to advocating for the nation’s students and addressing their academic and social/emotional development and college and career readiness needs.
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