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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

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Gratitude Builds Character and Health

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Sometimes Misbehavior Is Not What It Seems

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Browse

blog

Creating More Compassionate Classrooms

Guest blogger and high school humanities teacher Joshua Block shares the six structural and pedagogical reminders he uses to steadily improve the ethic of compassion in his classroom.

9 2,214 16,092 views
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Winter Reads by Women Writers

Edutopia blogger Elena Aguilar recommends her six all-time favorite novels by women writers for hours of engaging, meaningful winter reading.

7 186 2,102 views
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Helping Students With Identity Secrets

Edutopia blogger Rick Curwin takes a compassionate look at students living with identity secrets, and proposes three steps toward creating a culture of acceptance.

8 350 3,781 views
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A Call to All Social-Emotional Learning Leaders

Edutopia blogger Maurice Elias asks SEL and character education leaders to work together to create a set of guidelines and to also decide on a common language and terminology.

15 179 1,962 views
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Teaching Your Students How to Have a Conversation

Guest blogger Dr. Allen Mendler presents eight strategies for helping your students reclaim and master the lost art of conversation.

19 7,543 106,909 views
blog

Writing and Thinking Through the Student User's Guide Assignment

Guest blogger Ashley Hutchinson, in collaboration with her colleagues Stephanie Noles and Mike Flinchbaugh, explain how their high school students now come with self-written user's guides.

7 1,159 28,826 views
blog

Bullying: In the Trenches, We Can't Wait for a Definition

Guest blogger Becki Cohn-Vargas, Director of Not In Our School, likes that researchers and lawmakers are seeking to define bullying, but she stresses that we must continue preventing it even as we wait for a definition.

20 277 2,241 views

Pages

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What Bullying Looks Like in the Digital Age and How to Prevent It

As cyberbullying increases, our best options are recognizing patterns, keeping evidence, intervening when appropriate, reporting any incidents, and educating everyone -- bullies included.

1,371 10,223 views
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Social and Emotional Curriculum: Self-Reflection

In her Seven Doors to Happiness blog series, filmmaker Randy Taran opens Door Number Three to reveal techniques and positive outcomes for self-reflection..

3 59 10,223 views
article

Six Tips for Teaching Social and Emotional Skills After School

Best practices from WINGS for Kids, a carefully designed South Carolina program.

86 10,223 views
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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 1,872 10,083 views
blog

How to Trust Your Students

Edutopia blogger Todd Finley shares what it means for teachers to trust their students, providing evidence of the immediate and long-term benefits.

5 1,040 10,083 views
blog

Building Social and Emotional Skills in Elementary Students: Emotional Management

In Part 6 of her elementary student SEL series, filmmaker Randy Taran sets the stage for Ninja Mastery, a.k.a. learning emotional management.

13 570 9,943 views
article

What They See Is What We Get: A Primer on Light

Ten myths about lighting and color in schools.

8 36 9,803 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 27,427 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 11,614 views