Forget the ABC’s and 123’s.
Why is it not a priority to teach our children social emotional health and well-being? Why are we so concerned with milestones and where a child is at academically, that we overlook their social emotional welfare?
There has been a switch in what people are now thinking is important for children to “master.” Social Emotional Learning skills, or those most related to character, confidence, anger management, optimism and self-awareness, are other important contributors to student success.”
CASEL (the Collaborative for Academic, Social and Emotional Learning) an organization based at the University of Illinois, defines Social Emotional Learning as:
“Social and emotional learning is the process through which children and adults acquire and effectively apply the knowledge, attitudes and skills necessary to understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.”
“Don’t become preoccupied with your child’s academic ability but instead teach them:
to sit with those sitting alone, to be kind, be a friend, to encourage others, to think about other people, to look for the good THIS IS HOW THEY’LL CHANGE THE WORLD” -Anonymous
We are so focused on making sure our children are the next rocket scientist that we are not making sure to give them the tools that will make them successful in life. For instance, child has lots of cousins, and family friends around his age. When we get together it is always a competition on who is potty trained, who knows their ABC’s, and who is going to be the next president. I on the other hand am looking at who is sharing, who is offering up their toy to the crying friend next to them, who is making sure everyone is include, who is going to the one child sitting alone waiting to see if they can join in. Now this is not to say that academics are not important but that we might be forgetting to invest in a child’s character as well. On a further point, we should focus on overall wanting a well-rounded child instead.
When we partner social emotional education with academics children become affluential individuals. “Teaching social emotional learning skills can help increase students’ self-awareness and impulse control, boost attendance rates and help them make constructive and responsible decisions in and outside of the classroom. When combined with effective academic instruction, SEL can help all students have a positive and well-rounded educational experience.” (https://www.mheducation.com/…/social-emotional-learning-imp…)
According to Edutopia there are five key areas to focus on with social emotional education.
- Social Awareness
- Relationship Skills
- Responsible Decision making
Thank you all for taking the time and wanting to make this world a better place by raising the best version of tiny humans that you can!
-Ms. Michaela R.
Child Success Advocate
Lead Preschool Teacher