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'SEL', an integral part of education
and development of children.

L Umadevi

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Children have the cultural conditioning that they inherit social roles from adults. It happens in every society irrespective of the cultural disparities. The education systems in every society help the children for this eventual adaptation of responsibility. The result is the need for an improved education system worldwide.

Different modifications in different areas are suggested by the parents, mainly the basic academic skills, critical thinking, character reformation, training their ward to stay away from illegal drugs, violence and alcohol, and some need the support and involvement of the community in the education system. All these improvements that the parents and teachers suggested in different aspects can be coined as social-emotional learning. While principles that inform social-emotional learning which have been written in early days, the usage of this concept came to active when the CASEL (Collaborative for Academic Social and Emotional Learning) took initiative to put together all the stakeholders relating to child to promote the concept in order to create the school setting according to this.

Social-Emotional Learning or SEL

According to the “Collaborative for Academics Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL)”  SEL  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”. CASEL explains five core competencies as part of their Social-Emotional Framework.

These competencies include;

  • Self-awareness - Self-awareness is when a child or person understands one's own emotions, personal goals, and values, i.e., assessing one's strengths and limitations, having positive mindsets and optimistic to overcome the difficulties.

  • Self-management - It is about regulating or managing one’s own emotions in order to achieve personal and educational objectives. This entails the ability to postpone gratification, handle tension, suppress urges and persevere through challenges.

  • Social awareness - For people with different experiences or cultures, social sensitivity requires the ability to understand, empathize and show compassion. It also includes identifying and endorsing social expectations for conduct and recognizing family, education and community resources.

  • Relationship skills - Relationship abilities help students to build and sustain stable as well as fulfilling relationships and behave according to social norms. Such skills include clarity of communication, effective listening, cooperating, avoidance of inappropriate social pressure, constructively negotiating disputes, and finding assistance when needed.

  • Responsible decision making - Responsible decision-making means learning how to make constructive decisions in different settings about personal activity and social experiences. It needs the ability to understand ethical principles, safety issues, precise behavioral standards for unsafe activities, the health and well-being of oneself and others, and to make a rational assessment of the effects of different acts.

Effective social and emotional learning programming involves coordinated classroom, school, family and community practices those help students to develop the following five key skills. Promoting social and emotional learning for students in all classrooms includes teaching and modeling social and emotional skills, providing learners with opportunities to practice and hone those skills, and providing students with an opportunity to apply these skills in different contexts. Social-emotional learning program helps the teacher’s class management skills, it also improves the teacher-student relationships and also with a teacher having good experience in social-emotional training, that helps students to acquire social skills. Such students’ also develop problem-solving and anger-management skills.

(Jennings and Greenberg, 2009; Webster-Stratton and Reid, 2010)

Families are the first and most significant influence on the social-emotional growth of an infant. For the most part, families instinctively perform this obligation by simply listening to the needs of their children and creating a healthy space for development and learning. Their social-emotional growth occurs as children grow older through their encounters and relationships with extended families, teachers, sports, events, parents, classmates, community leaders, media figures, and many other life experiences. As parents, it is important to enable our children to extend their circle of influence and to find more ways to facilitate their social-emotional growth. The aim is to raise happy children who are positive contributors to our society.

Today's expectations and stresses of kids seem to be constantly rising. The student's results are becoming more evident attitudes, which are seen at school and in the classroom in particular. Students with Special Needs include students having a large range of problems like delays in growth or medical problems. This presents different problems to the life of a student. These challenges are often reflected in their school life. As a result, students with Special Needs are continually identified as an ‘at-risk’ population academically, socially, and emotionally. There are also higher school suspension rates for Students with Special Needs. The influence of LD on the emotional and social development of children at school and argues on the importance of increasing school-based SEL programs to promote the social and emotional development of such students. (Cavioni, 2017)

In a variety of ways, the introduction of ‘SEL’ services for all students supports special students. They benefit from opportunities to develop their own social and emotional skills, and they enjoy relationships with their teachers that are stronger and more confident. In addition, an environment and culture of inclusion and acceptance are encouraged by universal SEL services. Bullying decreases as all students undergo SEL programming, peer-to-peer interactions strengthen, and students show more empathy and helpfulness for students with special needs.

Now, this is an era of technology. In every aspect of life, one should know the technological skills to succeed in one’s own area. Digital citizenship is defined here as the habits, techniques, and strategies we use to engage in this on-line world. As technology in our lives has become pervasive, questions about its negative effects have been raised. Despite this, technology can still be a beneficial advancement for the growth of Social and Emotional Learning (SEL). The year is 2020, due to the pandemic, the role of technology has turned like an essential commodity in everyone’s life, especially in the education sector.

Across all areas, technology helps to work across distances and at scales, not otherwise possible. Video conferencing, for example, is an effective way for language learning. Communication, cooperation, culture and comprehension in different school cultures are essential skills to be learned in social and emotional learning. Live translation software can significantly enhance parental involvement, such as at parent-teacher conferences, using either text or audio, eliminating the expensive need for human interpreters. Gamification is also being used in other fields of education, and now also in SEL, to great effect. SEL’s lessons are not lost here. The empathy stressed in social and emotional learning is equally applicable in the digital sphere. Fostering social and emotional learning through technology is an excellent way to help our students prepare for the adult world. Some of the best technological tools that help students like Google classroom, Google jam board, class craft, weird enough productions, class catalyst and FUNecole.


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