3 Benefits of Social and Emotional Learning

Preparing students for a life of intention, service, ethical decision making, and a belief in the good in oneself and others begins with the everyday moments of their early education. At St. Timothy’s, our lessons focus on even the non-cognitive skills children need to thrive. In addition to traditional academic subjects, students master social and emotional learning (SEL) to understand themselves and interact with peers and adults. 

What Exactly is Social and Emotional Learning?

SEL is a learning methodology that helps develop lasting, meaningful interpersonal skills. There are five core principles of SEL: 

  • Self-awareness
  • Self-management
  • Relationship
  • Social awareness
  • Responsible decision making 

With a better understanding of their own emotions, children handle day-to-day interactions more empathetically. 

What Are Examples of Social and Emotional Learning in the Classroom?

There are many ways to approach SEL in the classroom, enabling students to process their feelings and consider others’. For instance, art or writing prompts that encourage students to discuss their emotions, class discussions to ask how everyone is doing, relevant books, and daily check-ins are great examples of SEL in action.  

Social and Emotional Learning Benefit 1: Strong Sense of Self

Self-awareness, self-management, and self-control are essential concepts for children to mimic. We help students grow into confident people who believe in themselves with these tools. SEL enables students to take charge of their own lives by understanding their emotions, feeling them fully, and productively addressing them. 

Managing stress, regulating emotions, and practical problem-solving are essential to SEL. Students who feel confident and encouraged to speak up are more likely to work through their feelings appropriately. They can then translate that knowledge of their own emotions when dealing with others.  

Social and Emotional Benefit 2: Better Relationships

Introspection is a significant pillar of SEL, allowing students to turn kindness outwards by relating the experiences of others to their own. Knowing how to interpret one’s feelings helps when breaking down the perspectives of others. 

SEL also helps students develop relationships by introducing the concepts of diverse experiences, community, and listening to other people. They learn to grasp the idea of the world beyond themselves through service, open discussions, and activities that facilitate solid social skills.    

Social and Emotional Benefit 3: Improved Performance

Students tend to perform well in class when they have an excellent relationship with themselves and others. SEL is known to improve grades and test scores and encourage students to put forth their best effort. SEL teaches soft skills necessary for children to succeed; they work well with others, ask questions, and put effort into their education. When students know that others are respectful and willing to help, they will be comfortable learning in a collaborative environment.  

Students are also less likely to face behavioral problems if they are comfortable with empathy and emotions. These teachings lead to less disruptive behavior or issues later on because they know how to manage their feelings appropriately. 

Social and Emotional Learning at St. Timothy’s 

At St. Timothy’s, we instill SEL ideologies and practices throughout our students’ curricula. Lower school students at St. Timothy’s learn SEL monthly from the school counselor, and middle schoolers have weekly lessons taught by the counselor or a classroom teacher. We recognize the importance of these significant benefits of SEL and have seen our students flourish from it. For additional information about SEL or St. Timothy’s, reach out to us today!