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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Social and Emotional Learning

Find and share resources for creating a healthy school culture by helping students develop skills to manage their emotions, resolve conflicts, and make responsible decisions.

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Overview

What is Social and Emotional Learning?

When students work together on project teams, they learn to collaborate, communicate, and resolve conflicts. Cooperative learning and character development supports the social and emotional development of students and prepares them for success in the modern workplace. Watch an introduction video.

History

A Short History

Teaching the soft skills, traditionally associated with conflict resolution and character education, has evolved from being considered "wishy-washy" to being an integral part of educating the whole child. See how a movement takes off.

Experts

What Experts Say

National and local experts discuss how educating the whole child by including social and emotional skills with academics is critical for success in school and in life. See what the experts say.

Research

SEL Research Review

Numerous research reports show that social and emotional learning (SEL) can have a positive impact on students' academic performance. Edutopia's SEL research review explores those reports and helps make sense of the results. Dig deeper.

Why

Why Champion SEL?

Helping students develop a sense of self will ultimately help them to better manage their emotions, communicate, and resolve conflicts nonviolently. See how to help students build character.

Discuss

Serving Gifted Students in General Ed Classrooms

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If You Had Only One Day, What Would You Teach?

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A Look Inside the Classroom of the Future

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Cracking the Code of Student Emotional Pain

Tue, 07/21/2015 - 10:00
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The Value of a Real Apology

Thu, 07/16/2015 - 12:00
5 230 4,334 views

If You Had Only One Day, What Would You Teach?

Tue, 07/07/2015 - 11:22
21 49 246 views

Browse

blog

In the Classroom: Helping Children Speak about Death and Loss

Edutopia blogger Maurice Elias suggests social, emotional learning includes a space for students to discuss loss of loved ones, which can also deepen their empathy for each other.

1 228 1,166 views
blog

The End of the Year is Near: 4 Fun Ways to Leave

Edutopia blogger Rick Curwin, recognizing that endings are difficult for both teachers and students, offers four fun, meaningful activities to help close out the year: interviewing, role-playing, giving imaginary gifts, and creating abstract art.

4 294 10,211 views
article

Core Strategies for Innovation and Reform in Learning

See an overview of Edutopia's core strategies, including project-based learning, social-emotional learning, comprehensive assessment, technology integration, integrated studies and teacher development.

4 346 298,116 views
blog

Your Face Scares Me: Understanding the Hyperrational Adolescent Brain

Edutopia blogger Todd Finley explores the power and purpose of the teenage brain, discovering surprises such as low dopamine levels, abundant of hyperrationality, and how adults can enable teen impulse by subtly redirecting it.

5 726 35,570 views
blog

Teaching Character: The Choices We Make

Guest blogger Bill Courtney, business owner and community volunteer, explores the elusive qualities that make a 'high-character individual,' and how real character flows from our decision about how we will react to challenges.

7 468 4,080 views
blog

Teachers Need to Follow Their Own Rules

Edutopia blogger Rick Curwin explains how behavior follows values, asks how children can be expected to follow rules that their teachers fail to model consistently and meaningfully, and proposes two simple but profound behavior changes.

27 820 17,785 views
blog

Emotions are Contagious

Guest blogger Lori Desautels suggests that, instead of fighting fire with fire when a student acts up, deploy four positive interactions - recognizing signs, understanding patterns, modeling self-awareness, and validating feelings - to defuse the...

1 546 5,829 views

Pages

article

The Advantage of Disadvantage: Teachers with Disabilities Are Not a Handicap

Disabled teachers bring a unique perspective to the classroom.

35 8 14,587 views
Teaching Grit Cultivates Resilience and Perseverance
video

Teaching Grit Cultivates Resilience and Perseverance (Research Made Relevant Series)

In rural New Hampshire, fifth-grade teacher Amy Lyon has created a curriculum based on researcher Angela Duckworth’s ideas about grit. Students set and work toward their own long-term goals, learning valuable lessons about dealing with frustration and...

2 444 14,295 views
blog

How Reading Literature Cultivates Empathy

Edutopia blogger Elena Aguilar proposes that, as the Common Core rolls in, teachers will have to make strategic decisions about when and how to integrate literature.

9 6,625 14,149 views
blog

Creating Classrooms for Social Justice

Teach your students about making positive change in the world by connecting with them, discussing real-world problems and multiple perspectives, creating classroom community, and including authentic assessment.

5 852 14,004 views
blog

Gratitude: A Powerful Tool for Your Classroom

By exercising the "gratitude muscle" with a gratitude journal, students can harness positive thinking to increase their grades, goals, and quality of life.

4 884 13,858 views
blog

Laughter and Learning: Humor Boosts Retention

Humor activates the brain's dopamine reward system, stimulating goal-oriented motivation and long-term memory, which means that humor can improve retention in students of all ages.

16 1,037 13,712 views
blog

8 Tips for Schools Interested in Restorative Justice

Restorative justice promotes a positive, orderly school environment. Students and all members of the school community can learn and practice self-discipline, empathy, and accountability.

10 517 13,566 views

Pages

An Introduction to Social and Emotional Learning
Video

Social and Emotional Learning 101

Emotional intelligence must be developed in children before any other learning can effectively take place.

7 87 27,260 views
Educating Hearts: A Districtwide Initiative to Teach How to Care
Video

Educating Hearts: A Districtwide Initiative to Teach How to Care

The Anchorage School District's investment in social and emotional learning is paying off both socially and academically.

13 57 11,232 views