The Benefits of Social-Emotional Learning & Why You Should Apply It Today!

In today's day and age, for a holistic learning approach, a student’s Emotional development is just as important as his or her Intelligence Quotient. In fact with changing times, it is safe to say that the development of a student's, Emotional Quotient has gained prime importance. With this realisation, it becomes prudent for schools and institutes to inculcate a focus on such development in their curriculum.


What is Social-Emotional Learning?

Social and emotional learning (SEL) is the process through which children and adults understand and manage emotions, set and achieve positive goals, feel and show empathy for others, establish and maintain positive relationships, and make responsible decisions.

Often taught in the classroom nowadays, social-emotional learning gives tomorrow’s adults the tools for success. Educators have found that a focus on social and emotional learning also contributes to a positive school climate and increased academic success. Beyond immediate outcomes in the classroom, social and emotional learning prepares students to solve problems, manage emotions, and communicate.


Effects of Social-Emotional Learning

Research conducted over two decades demonstrates that educational practices with a focus on Social and Emotional learning gain significant results. Calculated from observation in various fields, there is a reason to believe that Social-Emotional learning intervention in education increase students’ academic performance. This in comparison to students who did not participate in such Social-Emotional learning programs. Students participating in SEL programs also show an improvement in their classroom behaviour. It has also been observed that students display an increased ability to manage stress and depression, and a better overall attitude about themselves and others around them.

Studies conducted by the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL), suggests that adding a social and emotional learning program leads to an increase in positive development and productivity of students. According to the research, 57 percent more students in schools that initiated an SEL program improved their learning and communication skills. Compared to schools without a functional Social-Emotional learning program, 27 percent of schools saw an improvement in their overall academic performance. 24 percent of students in schools with an active SEL program saw an improvement in their emotional well-being and social behaviour. To summarise, current data has shown that the addition of an active SEL program to the school curriculum can lead to significant real-world benefits for students.


Applying Social-Emotional Learning

Social and emotional development can be encouraged, and social and emotional skills, attitudes, and behaviours can be taught using a variety of approaches:

  • Separate lessons designed to enhance students’ social and emotional competence explicitly.
  • Teaching practices such as cooperative learning and project-based learning, which promote Social-Emotional development.
  • Integration of Social-Emotional Learning programs and academic curriculum.
  • Strategies that promote Social-Emotional Learning as a school-wide initiative that creates a climate and culture favourable to learning.

Social and Emotional Development is vital today for the generations of tomorrow. As we as educators take students into our hands, it is necessary to understand that the development of children must have a holistic approach. Enabling them to become positive and productive citizens and human beings thanks to an education that not only focuses on academics but their own personal advancement as well.

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