Mental intelligence, resilience, socio-emotional learning“These posts are trending on social media and at the forefront of initiatives in many of our schools.” For a complex reason: the epidemic has put children under stress and created some kind of trauma in many children and adolescents.
Addressing the socio-emotional well-being of children in the classroom is not only important; It is critical and it is not only necessary after an epidemic. Being emotionally aware and wealthy is a life skill. Dr. Susan David, a world-renowned author and researcher, states that “the way we navigate our inner world — our daily thoughts, emotions and self-stories The The single most important determinant of success in our lives. “
What is the bright spot for our teachers? Integrating socio-emotional learning in school days makes our lives easier, not harder. I promise. It’s not going to feel like loading one more thing on your plate. Once you do this, you will feel that something has actually been taken from your plate. Why? Because when you and students begin to associate with what is happening inside and use it as a source of creative and intellectual expression, the learning culture among peers becomes lighter, softer, more empathetic. You will find that writing encourages social-emotional growth.
Write down what you know – and what you feel
As a writing teacher for 26 years, I have found that writing works can be a powerful tool for developing one’s mental intelligence and resilience. Students who are able to access their thoughts, emotions and self-stories and then give them their voices literally and figuratively Themselves. Over time they rely on writing to communicate, navigate and adapt to what life brings. Writing helps students in even the most chaotic backgrounds feel that they can strengthen control of certain measurements and organize their experiences.
What I was surprised to discover was that the quality of their writing improved when students were attracted to the socio-emotional learning taught by their teachers explicitly and implicitly. Strong writing results from learning experiences of self-management, self-awareness, social-awareness, relationship skills and responsible decision making (CASEL skills). It makes sense, after all. Writing, whether formal or informal, starts from the inside. So, the more emotional the writer, the stronger the writing.
So, let’s explore some ways you can integrate the mutually beneficial pairing of writing and socio-emotional learning.
Fiction writing and self-management
Let’s start with the CASEL definition of self-management: “The ability to effectively manage one’s emotions, thoughts and behaviors in different situations and to achieve goals and aspirations.” As students learn to navigate difficult emotions, especially in challenging situations, writing can be extremely helpful. When I love to go into the genre of fiction. The great truth we know is called fiction piece. Writers often find themselves learning more about emotions and working with a “created” character while working with them.
Start by asking students to create a character but choose a familiar problem that the character can work on.
In one instance, a very new kindergartener, at home during the epidemic, felt lonely. He chose to write a story about Black Panther as the main character. In the story, the Black Panther meets a Chrysalis. The story reads, “The Black Panther waited and waited and waited and waited. One day a beautiful butterfly was born. The Black Panther tells him to be his sidekick and the butterfly says yes.
Can you hear how this young writer is almost advising himself? “Wait, be patient, and you’ll be with others again.”
In this subsequent writing example from a high grade, the student was having a hard time getting along with an older brother. She loved him very much, but the older brother saw her as an annoying little sister. So, he wrote a story about two sisters, Chloe and Casey, who had an exciting relationship. In this story, though, Chloe shows up for younger sister Casey when things get tough.
This student writer shared the story with his brother. That brother became much more aware of how he was treating her and they were able to resolve some (not all) tensions.
So, one way to integrate SEL and writing is to take on real-world challenges with fictional characters that make difficult parts of relationships work successfully.
Personal narrative and self-awareness
CASEL defines self-awareness as: “One’s ability to understand one’s own emotions, thoughts, and values and how they affect behavior across contexts.” Sometimes looking at emotions and writing stories of those moments when those emotions were predominant was a healthy way to create self-awareness. That is, write a personal narrative.
To find personal narratives that dig deeper into the creation of emotional intelligence, it may be helpful to use a tool like the mood meter at Yale’s Emotion Intelligence Center or this tool by my friend and educator Liz Pappas (published by Benchmark Education Company).
One of the most important parts of becoming more emotionally intelligent is naming emotions at a grainy level. People usually name some common emotions such as angry, stressed or overwhelmed. When people can drill down and name more specific emotions, and then examine the times when they feel that way, they learn to manage their moods and build resilience. And, of course, SEL’s goal is to have resilience.
Model how to choose a topic
To introduce students to writing personal narratives, ask them to use a list of emotions to identify more specific emotions they want to write. And then tell the student writers to think about the times when they felt that way. Those moments become stories, and they force students to draft and refine because memory is important.
You may want to model this process by thinking aloud and perhaps writing a few words on the chart paper. For example, I can choose the word Crying And remember when my eldest child went to college in Dublin, Ireland. That experience could be the focus of my personal description. Students can then try the process you modeled to bring their own story.
Once you realize that students are ready for greater complexity, invite them to choose multiple emotions they feel at the same time, because when you think about it, we are all feeling multiple emotions together. This invitation not only allows students to experience multiple emotions at the same time, it also allows students to write about those emotions and test them once written.
Create a time to reflect
The test is an integral part of SEL. As part of the process of writing personal narratives based on emotions, add a little reflection time. Use these questions to guide students in their reflections:
- When I respond to my emotions, is that the best result for me? For others?
- When I felt these emotions, did I take a break and decide what to do next?
- How did I work through them in a healthy way while feeling mixed emotions? What can I do differently next time?
Or offer some text-centered reflection prompt:
- What have I done to really clear my emotions to my readers?
- How did I organize my writing to show the many emotions I was feeling?
- How did I dare to show my true passion in my writing?
Using personal descriptions as a way to refine your self-management skills is both effective and powerful.