Social-Emotional Learning: A Beginner's Guide

Social emotional learning (SEL) has been steadily gaining momentum in the education field. Research and schools are taking notice of how teaching these social and emotional skills has an overwhelmingly positive effect on students’ ability to learn and succeed in school.

Social emotional learning (SEL) is an umbrella term for several attributes:

  • Self-awareness

  • Social awareness

  • Emotion regulation

  • Social skills

  • Responsible decision making

SEL is part of a holistic approach to teaching, which views a student as a whole person, not just the sum of their academic skills. At Lil’ Eggheads, we view our students similarly; a child’s temperament and behavior is part of their performance as a student. SEL takes a look at these pieces of the puzzle, and just like Lil’ Eggheads, seeks to educate the whole child!

Developing these skills is a natural part of child development and has an impact on how children do in the classroom. Think about how hard it is to work when things at home or in your personal life aren’t going well. Emotional intelligence alerts us to how our emotions are getting in the way of us doing our best work, and emotional regulation skills allow us to put aside our emotions for the moment to let us get back to work. 

It’s the same for students. No matter how young or old, stress is stress, and it affects how a student does in school. By teaching students how to recognize how they’re feeling and talk about it, it helps them to work through or put aside their emotions and get back to learning.

In our next post, we’ll go over how the Social emotional learning approach works in the classroom or in a session, and provide a few ways to develop these skills at home!  

In addition, if you’d like to learn more, there are some incredible resources online! Here are a few of our favorites: